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The Swiss National Council © The Swiss Parliament

Strong parliaments

We help strengthen parliaments to make them more effective and representative.
Swiss National Council

Strong parliaments are the cornerstone of democracy and essential for development. They represent the people, pass laws and hold governments to account. As an organization made up of nearly all the world’s national parliaments, the IPU helps parliaments become more representative, gender-balanced, younger, transparent, accessible, accountable and effective.

To do this, the IPU pools the collective expertise and experience of its Members to establish common standards and guidelines  on parliaments. We encourage parliaments to lead their own development through tools such as our Common Principles for Support to Parliaments.

We also help parliaments harness the power of new technology through the Centre for Innovation in Parliament, a partnership between the IPU and parliaments to develop and share good practices in digital innovation and tools such as social media.

The IPU’s democratic ideals have been enshrined in two important declarations. In 1994, IPU Members adopted the Declaration on Criteria for Free and Fair Elections  followed by the Universal Declaration on Democracy three years later. 

IPU Members also have a dedicated Committee on Democracy and Human Rights  that meets at every Assembly.
 

Setting standards
143
Number of national parliaments which have endorsed the Common Principles for Support to Parliaments
Explore strong parliaments
We pull together common values and principles of parliaments' work into sets of standards and guidelines that present a vision of democratic parliaments and describe good practices.
We work actively throughout the world to help develop strong, well-functioning parliaments that can rise to modern challenges.
The International Day of Democracy is celebrated around the world on 15 September each year. Its sister day, the International Day of Parliamentarism, is celebrated worldwide on 30 June.
Contact us for more information on how we can support your parliament
Latest news and stories on strong parliaments
Press releases
Afghan parliament

International Day of Parliamentarism 2022: More diversity, slightly fewer functioning parliaments

On the eve of the International Day of Parliamentarism and the IPU’s 133rd anniversary on 30 June, a snapshot of the state of parliaments and parliamentarians offers mixed results. According to the latest IPU figures, some parliaments are becoming more
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Press releases
Swedish Parliament

IPU launches new indicators to measure parliamentary performance

The IPU and partners have published a radically new approach to measuring parliamentary progress with the launch of a preliminary version of indicators that will allow parliaments to give themselves a health check. The Indicators for Democratic Parliaments is an
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News in brief
Australian polling booth

More women and more diversity in new Australian parliament

All 151 seats in the House of Representatives and 40 of the 76 Senate seats were up for reelection in the recent Australian parliament elections. The Labor Party, led by Anthony Albanese, beat the incumbent Liberal/National coalition government. According to
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Voices
Birth of new democracies

133 years of IPU history in (just over) 133 seconds

Watch 133 years of IPU's history in (just over) 133 seconds. How did the IPU grow from a handful of parliamentarians from 9 countries who met for the first time on 30 June 1889 to become the global organization of
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Voices
Birth of new democracies

133 years of IPU history in (just over) 133 seconds

Watch 133 years of IPU's history in (just over) 133 seconds. How did the IPU grow from a handful of parliamentarians from 9 countries who met for the first time on 30 June 1889 to become the global organization of
Read more
Strong parliaments
Latest publications on strong parliaments
The third Global Parliamentary Report examines public engagement in the work of parliament. The information, findings and recommendations in this report set out a road map for enhanced public engagement by parliaments and parliamentarians, working collaboratively with the community to
The World e-Parliament Report 2020 documents the experiences, innovations and lessons learned in making sure parliaments continued to function during the COVID-19 pandemic. The report is based on data from 116 parliaments and focus groups involving 49 parliaments.
This comparative research paper looks at the governance of parliamentary administrations. Parliamentary administrations – responsible for providing the organizational, day-to-day, budgetary and technical functions of parliaments – play a key role in effective functioning of parliaments by offering administrative expertise
Strong parliaments
Related events
Workshop
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Wroxton College
Oxfordshire
United Kingdom

Jul 30 2022
Virtual event
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The launch is repeated on successive days, and participants can join the session that is most suitable for them.
Jun 08 2022
Virtual event
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Presentation of the Global Parliamentary Report 2022: Public Engagement in the Work of Parliament
May 30 2022
Strong parliaments