Parliaments & Representatives

Parliaments & Representatives

Women make up only 23.5% of Members of Parliament according to the latest available data of the Inter-Parliamentary Union. While significant strides in women’s political participation have been made since the adoption of the Beijing Platform for Action in 1995, which set Member States’ target of achieving gender balance in political decision-making, women are still underrepresented in political decision-making at all levels and gender balance remains an aspirational goal.  Gains in women’s participation have been notable in countries that have taken proactive steps to support women’s political participation, including reforming or amending discriminatory laws, taking concrete action to address violence against women in politics and gender discrimination within parliaments, addressing gender-specific barriers, and supporting women in all forms of decision-making including at local level and in executive government.


Fresh call for gender equality in local politics in York
Politicians in York have added their voices to calls for better gender representation in local government, after newly-published research about the imbalance.The IPPR North report, published on...
Old boys’ club puts women off politics
An old boys’ network in local political parties is deterring women from standing as councillors, a report has said.Only one in three local councillors and one in seven council leaders are women. The...
Papua New Guinea PM wants to push for more women MPs
Papua New Guinea's prime minister says he's looking to revive a proposal to reserve 22 seats in the country's parliament for women.No women were elected in recent elections, making Papua New Guinea...
New Kenya Parliament could be dissolved for having less than one-third women
More women have been elected to Parliament this year compared to 2013, but the 12th Parliament might be plunged into an unprecedented constitutional crisis of meeting the two-thirds gender rule.The...
Kyrgyzstani women leaders organize to pass legislation to protect victims of dom...
Women in Kyrgyzstan face stark barriers to full political participation. Despite holding 23 seats in parliament, women reside in few leadership positions in parties. For example, Kyrgyzstan law...
Tunisia’s parliament passes landmark law to ‘end all violence’ against women
Tunisia’s parliament has approved a bill aimed at ending “all violence against women” in a move welcomed by rights groups.The new law, which is expected to enter into force next year, defines...
No female MPs in Papua New Guinea's new parliament
Not one of Papua New Guinea’s 111 MPs will be female when the 10th parliament sits next month despite a record number of women candidates standing in the country’s chaotic general election.One-term...
‘We don’t have bodyguards, we are completely vulnerable’: female MPs on the fear...
Paula Sherriff tries her best not to be paranoid, or let it get in the way of her work as an MP. But, ever since her friend and colleague Jo Cox was murdered in the street a few miles from...
Pennsylvania's women legislators few in number but more effective at passin...
A recent study found that women legislators in Pennsylvania’s General Assembly — though small in number — are more effective at passing legislation than their male counterparts.Researchers found,...

iKNOW Politics Partners Resources

UN Women
ParlTools: A new platform by ParlAmericas and UN Women dedicated to parliamentarians
UN Women, Inter-Parliamentary Union
Women in Politics Map: 2017
UN Women, Inter-Parliamentary Union
Women in Politics Map: 2017
Inter-Parliamentary Union
Evaluating the gender sensitivity of parliaments: A self assessment toolkit by IPU
ipu toolkit

Related Websites

UN Women's Global Gender Equality Constitutional Database
City 50-50 Platform encourages gender parity in power spheres in Brazil
Violence against Women in Politics
E-learning Portal for Parliaments
Women’s Caucus Fact Sheet