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Parliaments and Representatives

Democracy and the equal participation of men and women in the political arena are closely intertwined. No parliament or any decision-making body can claim to be representative without the participation of both men and women. As stated in the Universal Declaration on Democracy adopted by the Inter-Parliamentary Union’s Member Parliaments in 1997, "The achievement of democracy presupposes a genuine partnership between men and women in the conduct of the affairs of society in which they work in equality and complementarity, drawing mutual enrichment from their differences."

Recent years have seen a steady increase in the number of women in parliament, though the world average of less than 22 percent remains far from the goal of parity between women and men. The election of women to the highest positions of state and government in several countries has also contributed to the changing face of politics.

While the road to election is a difficult one, the challenges for women do not stop there. Once women enter parliament or other bodies, they are faced with many new challenges. Parliament is traditionally a male-oriented domain where the rules and practices have been written by men. It is, therefore, an ongoing challenge to transform parliament into a gender-sensitive environment, to ensure that actions are gender-sensitive and to guarantee that gender is mainstreamed throughout the legislature.

World News

Men still dominate Uganda’s party politics – women’s participation is mostly cosmetic

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Men still dominate Uganda’s party politics – women’s participation is mostly cosmetic

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Electoral gender quotas in Uganda – first introduced in 1989 – have increased women’s numbers in Uganda’s parliament to 34%. Today there are 189 women out of 557 members of parliament.

Electoral gender quotas in Uganda – first introduced in 1989 – have increased women’s numbers in Uganda’s parliament to 34%. Today there are 189 women out of 557 members of parliament.

Beyond quotas for women's political empowerment

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May 23, 2024

Beyond quotas for women's political empowerment

Politics has historically been a male-dominated space. Men hold the majority of power in the political sphere globally due to entrenched patriarchal norms that prioritize male leadership and decision-making.

Politics has historically been a male-dominated space. Men hold the majority of power in the political sphere globally due to entrenched patriarchal norms that prioritize male leadership and decision-making.

Impact Report 2023

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May 22, 2024

Impact Report 2023

The IPU grew in 2023 with the accession of the parliaments of Liberia and the Bahamas, its 179th and 180th Members respectively, as well as many observers and partners signing up to join or rejoin our global parliamentary community. 

The IPU grew in 2023 with the accession of the parliaments of Liberia and the Bahamas, its 179th and 180th Members respectively, as well as many observers and partners signing up to join or rejoin our global parliamentary community. 

The grim 'Nari Shakti' reality: When will women be adequately represented in Indian politics?

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May 21, 2024

The grim 'Nari Shakti' reality: When will women be adequately represented in Indian politics?

“For me, a better democracy is a democracy where women do not only have the right to vote and to elect but to be elected.”

Michelle Bachelet, former president of Chile.

“For me, a better democracy is a democracy where women do not only have the right to vote and to elect but to be elected.”

Michelle Bachelet, former president of Chile.

World News

Ireland: record number of women set to contest June's local elections

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Ireland: record number of women set to contest June's local elections

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A record number of women candidates are expected to run in June's local elections.

So far, 649 women have been selected or declared for the contests.

Although nominations do not close until midday on Saturday, this would mean around a third of candidates would be women.

The figures were provided by Women for Election based on analysis by the NUI Maynooth lecturer, Adrian Kavanagh.

A record number of women candidates are expected to run in June's local elections.

So far, 649 women have been selected or declared for the contests.

Although nominations do not close until midday on Saturday, this would mean around a third of candidates would be women.

The figures were provided by Women for Election based on analysis by the NUI Maynooth lecturer, Adrian Kavanagh.

World News

Empowering women's political participation in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan

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Empowering women's political participation in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan

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If you want to know how civilized a culture is, look at how they treat its women.” - Bacha Khan

In the heart of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP), a region brimming with resilience and potential, there exists a stark reality that impedes its progress: the underrepresentation of women in the political sphere. This disparity not only stifles the voices of half the population but also hampers the region's socio-economic development.

If you want to know how civilized a culture is, look at how they treat its women.” - Bacha Khan

In the heart of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP), a region brimming with resilience and potential, there exists a stark reality that impedes its progress: the underrepresentation of women in the political sphere. This disparity not only stifles the voices of half the population but also hampers the region's socio-economic development.

Sexism still ranks as the biggest hurdle facing women in elected office

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May 21, 2024

Sexism still ranks as the biggest hurdle facing women in elected office

It’s no secret that women have made unprecedented strides in seeking and attaining elected office over the last decade.

It’s no secret that women have made unprecedented strides in seeking and attaining elected office over the last decade.

Weaponising gendered disinformation across Africa

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May 16, 2024

Weaponising gendered disinformation across Africa

Gendered disinformation is being used across Africa as a tactic to silence critics and exclude women from online civic discourses, new research shows.

Gendered disinformation is being used across Africa as a tactic to silence critics and exclude women from online civic discourses, new research shows.