Nearly every country in the world has some form of parliament. Parliamentary systems fall into two categories: bicameral and unicameral. Out of 190 national parliaments in the world, 78 are bicameral (156 chambers) and 112 are unicameral, making a total of 268 chambers of parliament with some 44,000 members of parliament. IPU membership is made up of 180 national parliaments
The IPU has been collecting data on parliaments since its inception in 1889, including information on women’s participation in politics since 1945. In this section, discover the IPU's knowledge bank for and about parliaments.
The in-person segment of the 13th Summit of Women Speakers of Parliament (13SWSP), convened by the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU), in close cooperation with the United Nations and the Austrian Parliament, will take place in Vienna (Austria) on 6 September 2021. The Summit will precede the Fifth World Conference of Speakers of Parliament (5WCSP), which will also be held in-person in Vienna from 7 to 8 September 2021.
The Summit provides women in the highest decision-making positions of parliament a forum in which to exchange ideas and experiences that are of interest to their national and international agendas. It is open to women Speakers of national parliaments as well as to women Presidents of regional and international parliamentary assemblies that are Associate Members of the IPU. Selected special guests will also be invited to attend the Summit.
The in-person segment of the 13th Summit of Women Speakers of Parliament on the theme Women at the centre: From confronting the pandemic to preserving achievements in a gender-responsive recovery will take stock of, recognize and pay tribute to women from all walks of life who have been instrumental in confronting the COVID-19 pandemic. It will also identify ways and means of preserving and consolidating women’s achievements and furthering progress in a gender-responsive recovery agenda, leaving no woman and no girl behind.