• Australia
  • Austria
  • Belarus
  • Belgium
  • Bhutan
  • Burkina Faso
  • Cameroon
  • Canada
  • Chile
  • China
  • Côte d'Ivoire
  • Croatia
  • Cyprus
  • Czech Republic
  • Denmark
  • Ecuador
  • Egypt
  • Estonia
  • Fiji
  • Finland
  • France
  • Gabon
  • Germany
  • Greece
  • Hungary
  • Iceland
  • India
  • Ireland
  • Israel
  • Italy
  • Japan
  • Jordan
  • Kiribati
  • Latvia
  • Lebanon
  • Lithuania
  • Luxembourg
  • Mali
  • Malta
  • Mexico
  • Monaco
  • Mongolia
  • Netherlands
  • New Zealand
  • Norway
  • Oman
  • Philippines
  • Poland
  • Portugal
  • Republic of Korea
  • Republic of Moldova
  • Romania
  • Russian Federation
  • Rwanda
  • Samoa
  • Saudi Arabia
  • Senegal
  • Serbia and Montenegro
  • Singapore
  • Slovakia
  • Slovenia
  • South Africa
  • Spain
  • Sri Lanka
  • St. Kitts and Nevis
  • Suriname
  • Sweden
  • Switzerland
  • The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia
  • Tunisia
  • Turkey
  • Ukraine
  • United Kingdom
  • Viet Nam
  • Zambia
  • Zimbabwe



Professor Emeritus, University of Leeds, Fellow of the Human Rights Centre, University of Essex and Associate Director, Democratic Audit UK

David Beetham has become one of the best-known and most distinguished experts in the field of democratic theory and practice. He has published widely in this area. Besides theoretical works on democracy and human rights, Professor Beetham has pioneered new methods of assessment of democracy and human rights, and worked with a number of international organisations to help implement them.

His recent publications include: The International Idea Handbook on Democracy Assessment (Kluwer Law International, 2002), The State of Democracy (Kluwer Law International, 2002), Democracy under Blair (Politico's, 2003), Democracy: a Beginner's Guide (One World Publications, 2005) and Introducing Democracy: 80 Questions and Answers, 2nd edition (UNESCO, 2006).


Former Speaker of the Israeli Knesset

Avraham Burg is a former head of the National Religious Party. Mr. Burg has in recent years been a senior member of the Israeli Labour Party and one of the most charismatic members of Parliament. In 1999, he became the youngest Speaker in the history of the Israeli Knesset.

He has boldly argued that there cannot be democracy in Israel without equal rights for all who live there, Arab as well as Jew. On 1 December 2003, Avraham Burg and a group of Israeli and Palestinian civic leaders negotiated and signed the Geneva Accord, a proposal that, if implemented, would resolve some of the thorniest issues of the Israeli/Palestinian conflict and pave the way towards ending decades of bloodshed.

Honorary Secretary General of the Inter-Parliamentary Union

Pierre Cornillon was Secretary General of the Inter-Parliamentary Union from 1987 to 1998. Prior to being elected to this post, he had spent 22 years in the service of the organisation. Since 1998, Mr. Cornillon has carried out missions for the promotion of human rights and democracy in various countries. He has taken part in many international meetings and has held advisory positions in several international bodies dealing with parliament and democracy.

Mr. Cornillon is a member of the International Panel on Democracy and Development, which was established in 1998 by the Director General of UNESCO to guide that Organization's programmes aimed at strengthening democracy. He is an adviser to the African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) group of States in Brussels, which he is assisting in establishing a parliamentary assembly. Having been a member of the International Advisory Council of the International Foundation for Election Systems (IFES), Mr. Cornillon is currently a member of the Board of Directors of IFES Ltd. in London.

Assistant Director of the International Relations Service, French Senate

Olivier Delamare Deboutteville has been senior staff member in the French Senate since 1978. He has held several positions, including sitting on the Finance Committee for seven years, where he headed a group of senior parliamentary staff who assist the General Budget Rapporteur in examining the technical aspects of financial laws. He left the Senate for a four-year period, during which he served as adviser to the then minister for the economy and finance, Mr. Jean Arthuis, from 1995 to 1997. After two years in the private sector he went back to the Senate in January 2000, where he has been serving since 2002 as Assistant Director of the International Relations Service in charge of bilateral and multilateral cooperation and relations with international organizations.

Co-Director, Lokniti - Institute for Comparative Democracy, Delhi

Peter Ronald deSouza is Visiting Senior Fellow at the Centre for the Study of Developing Societies. He currently coordinating the State of Democracy in South Asia (SDSA) project.

Professor deSouza taught in the Political Science Department at Goa University for 16 years. In March 2000 he was a Visiting Professor at Birkbeck College, London University, and in May 2001 he was a Visiting Scholar at the Taubman Centre, Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University. Professor deSouza has, from the direction of political theory, engaged with what can be termed as the puzzles of Indian democracy. Some of the areas on which he has worked and published concern the banning of books, electoral reform, decentralized governance, electoral violence, political parties, human security, minority rights in India, marginal citizens and righting historical wrong.

Professor deSouza has also worked as a consultant or advisor with International IDEA, ICNRD-5, World Bank, Ford Foundation and UNDP. He has also written numerous democracy-related articles in national and international journals.

UN Special Rapporteur on Violence against Women, its Causes and Consequences

Yakin Ertürk is a professor of sociology and a former head of the Gender and Women’s Studies Programme at the Middle East Technical University, Ankara, Turkey. She also taught at the Centre for Girls, at King Saud University in Riyadh (1979-1982) and from 1979 to 1981 served as its Chair. Between 1997 and 2001 she worked with the United Nations, serving first as Director of the International Research and Training Institute for the Advancement of Women (INSTRAW) in Santo Domingo then as Director of the Division for the Advancement of Women (DAW) at UN headquarters in New York. In August 2003, she was appointed by the UN Human Rights Commission as Special Rapporteur on Violence against Women, its Causes and Consequences.

Professor Ertürk’s areas of interest include human rights, identity politics and violence against women, globalization, population movements, labour use patterns and women in development. She received her PhD degree in development sociology from Cornell University in 1980.

Director, Governance Programs, National Democratic Institute for International Affairs

Scott Hubli serves as Director for NDI's Governance Programs, providing technical support to NDI's legislative strengthening, public integrity, rule of law, and local governance programs worldwide. In this capacity, Mr. Hubli advises NDI staff on governance program strategy, design, implementation and evaluation; he also develops and maintains a pool of pro bono experts and trainers on governance issues. Since joining NDI in November 2000, Mr. Hubli has conducted legislative assessment and training missions in over 20 countries.

Mr. Hubli received his Juris Doctor degree with Honors from the University of Wisconsin Law School, and holds a Masters of Public Policy and Administration from the Robert M. La Follette Institute of Public Affairs. Prior to joining NDI, Mr. Hubli had served as a Senior Technical Advisor on a USAID project to strengthen the Palestinian Legislative Council; as Legislative Counsel for the Wisconsin State Legislature, and as an associate with the New York law firm of Debevoise and Plimpton.

Senior Regional Public Information Officer, United Nations High Commission for Refugees

In 1986, Francis Kpatindé joined Jeune Afrique magazine as a journalist. He worked with the United Nations assistance mission in Haiti in 1993 and on the first post-apartheid elections in South Africa in 1994. Between March 1995 and October 1997, Mr. Kpatindé served as spokesperson for Africa in the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) before returning to Jeune Afrique as one of the magazine's editors-in-chief. Since May 2005, he is the Senior Regional Public Information Officer for UNHCR in West Africa. Mr. Kpatindé holds a DESS degree in Diplomacy and Administration of International Organisations from the University of Paris XI.

Executive Director of LatinoBarometro

Marta Lagos has worked in the public opinion field since 1984, firstly at the Centro de Estudios de la Realidad Contemporánea (CERC), where she was director from 1990 to 1993. She started the Barómetro CERC, a public opinion barometer that has monitored the Chilean transition since 1987. In 1994 she founded her own market and society opinion research company in partnership with MORI in the UK. Since its inception in 1995, Marta Lagos has been the Executive Director of LatinoBarometro, which surveys annually public opinion in 18 Latin American countries.

Author of many publications in the field of public opinion research, she is a member of the World Values Survey team and part of the committee that organizes the Comparative Study of Electoral Systems (CSES). Additionally, Mrs. Lagos, has been consultant on survey issues and the electoral process in transition in 23 countries and in international organizations including IDB, UNDP, World Bank, UN and the EU.

Marta Lagos Cruz Coke holds a M.A. in Economics from Heidelberg University, Germany.

Head of Department, Public Law and Director of the Law, Race & Gender Research Unit, University of Cape Town

Christina Murray is Professor of Constitutional and Human Rights Law at the University of Cape Town. Between 1994 and 1996 she served on a panel of seven experts advising the South African Constitutional Assembly in drafting South Africa's ‘final’ Constitution. Since then she has advised a number of government departments in South Africa on the implementation of the new system of multi-level government and worked with South Africa’s national Parliament and many of its nine provincial legislatures. Her most recent constitutional work outside South Africa has been in Sourthern Sudan, Indonesia and Kenya. She has taught and written on the law of contract, human rights law (and particularly issues relating to gender equality and African customary law), international law, and constitutional law.

Former Speaker of the Zimbabwean National Assembly

Cyril Ndebele was a member of the political movement which fought for Zimbabwe's independence, and was part of the Zimbabwe African National Union (ZANU) PF’s legal team during independence negotiations. He has held senior positions in the ZANU PF, including membership of its Politburo. He was a Member of Parliament from 1990 to 2000, where he chaired several important committees (privileges, legal, standing rules and orders). He was elected Speaker from 1995 to 2000. As Speaker, Cyril Ndebele was instrumental in introducing parliamentary reforms designed to transform parliament into a more efficient, transparent and participatory democratic institution.

Cyril Ndebele was a founder member of the SADC Parliamentary Forum and has been a resource person at several international meetings on the workings of parliamentary democracy.

After legal training, Cyril Ndebele practised law in the United Kingdom and Zimbabwe. He has been Attorney and Advocate of the Supreme Court of Zimbabwe.

Speaker of the Moroccan Chamber of Representatives

Adbelwahad Radi was one of the founders of the Union nationale des forces populaires political party, and later the Union socialiste des forces populaires. He has held a number of positions of responsibility within the party, and has served as First Deputy Secretary since 2003. He has also co-founded many civil society and trade union organizations. From 1983 to 1984, Mr. Radi was Minister for International Cooperation.

Mr. Radi was first elected as a member of parliament in 1963. He has been constantly re-elected since 1977, and has served as the Speaker of the Chamber of Representatives since 1997. He is a strong proponent of parliamentary diplomacy and has held senior posts in a number of regional parliamentary organizations. Mr. Radi is a member of the IPU Executive Committee.

Member of the Philippine House of Representatives

An acclaimed human rights activist, Rep. Loretta Rosales is a representative of the marginal and under-represented sectors of Philippine society. During the repressive regime of former Philippine President Ferdinand Marcos, her underground activities led Loretta Rosales to be arrested on several occasions.

As Executive Director of the Institute for Political and Electoral Reform in 1994, Rep. Rosales actively lobbied for the enactment of the 1995 party-list law as provided for in the Philippines 1987 Constitution. Since 1998, she has been a member of the House of Representatives where she has chaired the Committee on Human Rights and co-chaired the Committee on Suffrage and Electoral Reforms.

Member of the Parliament of Mongolia

Sanjaasuren Oyun has been an opposition member of Parliament since 1998 and is currently the Chair of its Committee on Millenium Development Goals and Poverty Reduction policies. She entered politics following the assassination of her brother, Zorig, the Minister for Infrastructure Development and one of Mongolia’s main pro-democracy leaders.

As Leader of the Citizens’ Will Republican Party, she has made cleaner politics, transparency, accountability and anti-corruption the central pillars of her governance reforms. She is also the founder of the Zorig Foundation, an NGO whose mission is to advance democracy and the rule of law in Mongolia.

S. Oyun earned her PhD in isotope geochemistry from Cambridge University.

Member of the Mexican Senate

Dulce Maria Sauri has extensive experience as a legislator and public administrator. She was Governor of the State of Yucatan (1991-1994), and has been elected to either House of the Mexican Congress on numerous occasions since 1982. She was also President of the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) from Dec. 1999 to March 2002.

Since 1 December 2000, Ms. Sauri has been Chairperson of the Senate Asia Pacific Foreign Relations Committee. She is also a member of the Foreign Relations Committee, the North America Foreign Relations Committee and the Finance and Public Credit Committee.


The following is a non-exhaustive list of organisations involved in strengthening parliamentary institutions.


Inter-Parliamentary Union

The Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) is the international organisation of Parliaments of sovereign States. It was established in 1889. The Union is the focal point for world-wide parliamentary dialogue and works for peace and co-operation among peoples and for the firm establishment of representative democracy.

The IPU operates a Technical Cooperation Programme under which it assists national parliaments, particularly in developing countries, to improve the organisation of their work and strengthen their infrastructure. Under this programme, which was initiated in the early 1970's, the IPU (i) provides advisory services (ii) offers projects of assistance.

The programme focuses on strengthening the parliamentary institution itself, as well as providing assistance to elected parliamentarians and parliamentary staff. It systematically integrates this work with gender and human rights perspectives. Indeed, certain projects are specifically focused on ensuring greater participation of women in the parliamentary process.

Website: http://www.ipu.org

Assemblée parlementaire de la Francophonie

L'Assemblée parlementaire de la Francophonie regroupe des parlementaires de 73 parlements ou organisations interparlementaires répartis sur les cinq continents. Son action vise principalement à promouvoir et défendre la démocratie, l’État de droit, le respect des droits de l’Homme, le rayonnement international de la langue française et la diversité culturelle.

En étroite collaboration avec l’Agence de la Francophonie, elle engage et met en œuvre des actions dans les domaines de la coopération interparlementaire et du développement de la démocratie. Ses actions visent à renforcer la solidarité entre institutions parlementaires et à promouvoir la démocratie et l’État de droit, plus particulièrement au sein de la communauté francophone. Le programme Noria a été lancé en 2002 pour répondre à un besoin en renforcement des capacités de parlements francophones du Sud en matière de production, de gestion et de diffusion de l’information législative interne grâce aux Technologies de l’Information et de la Communication. Ce programme fait suite au programme PARDOC au bénéfice des services documentaires des parlements francophones.

Website: http://apf.francophonie.org

Commonwealth Parliamentary Association

The Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA) is composed of branches formed in Parliaments and Legislatures in Commonwealth countries which subscribe to parliamentary democracy.

The CPA's mission is to promote the advancement of parliamentary democracy by enhancing knowledge and understanding of democratic governance and by building an informed parliamentary community able to deepen the Commonwealth’s democratic commitment and to further co-operation among its Parliaments and Legislatures.

Website: http://www.cpahq.org

National Conference of State Legislatures

The National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) provides technical assistance in democracies and emerging democracies across the globe with the goal of strengthening the legislative institution. Drawing on its experience in the U.S. states, the NCSL provides assistance on such institutional issues as the legislative process, parliamentary procedure, committee structures and functions, staff organisation, ethics training, leadership training, and constituent relations.

NCSL has conducted a variety of projects in the areas of accountability, civic education, ethics, federalism, legislative management, new member training, and transparency in government. NCSL has also organised a number of workshops that often involve the entire legislature and are usually conducted by U.S. state legislators, legislative staff and/or NCSL staff.

Website: http://www.ncsl.org/public/internat/Technical.htm

AWEPA, European Parliamentarians for Africa

AWEPA is an association of parliamentarians that works to support the well functioning of parliaments in Africa and to keep Africa on the political agenda in Europe. Action is undertaken for human resource development with parliamentarians and other elected representatives and institutional capacity building within parliaments and decentralized authorities.

This includes attention to:

  • the key role of well-functioning parliaments with regards to democracy, human rights and peaceful conflict management;
  • the attainment of gender equality at all levels of political decision-making;
  • African-European sharing of parliamentary experience;
  • building parliamentary networks at national, regional and inter-regional levels as fora for political and non-governmental interaction

Website: http://www.awepa.org


Organization of American States

The Organization of American States’ (OAS) Program to Support the Strengthening of Legislative Institutions (PAFIL) has worked with parliaments for several years in order to strengthen their role in representative democracy and in the integration process.

The Program has supported the efforts of national and regional parliaments through its cooperation, harmonization and legislative adjustment initiatives, particularly in those concerning the Inter-American agenda such as: drug trafficking, corruption, terrorism, and natural disasters—challenges that also require minimally compatible and coordinated legislative responses.

Website: http://www.ddpa.oas.org/opd/pafil/default.htm

United Nations Development Programme

As part of its Democratic Governance practice area, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) provides support to parliaments to ensure that they have the capacity, resources and necessary independence to carry out their core functions effectively.

Parliamentary development is a particularly strategic entry point for UNDP programming and policy advisory services in a bid to harness parliaments' capacity as agents of change and potential promoters of the Millenium Development Goals. The organisation now supports over 50 parliaments around the world. Parliamentary development is one of the fastest growing areas of UNDP’s democratic governance practice, with the number of projects up tenfold from a decade ago.

UNDP provides a package of integrated technical assistance aimed at strengthening the three chief functions of parliaments — lawmaking, oversight, and representation. The organisation works to build the capacity of legislators and technical staff, promote institutional reform, and strengthen parliaments’ relationships with the executive and judiciary branches of government as well as with civil society.

Website: http://www.undp.org/governance/sl-parliaments.htm

World Bank Institute

The World Bank Institute’s Parliamentary Strengthening Programme aims to enhance parliaments’ capacity to effectively fulfill their responsibilities, especially with regard to government policy implementation and budget oversight.

The Programme's objectives include:

  • strengthening the capacity of parliaments to oversee the allocation and use of public funds
  • assisting parliaments in better representing the interest of citizens in the policy process, especially in the context of the PRSP
  • supporting parliamentary learning networks on key policy issues related to development
  • encouraging and promoting leading research on the role of parliaments, where such research can contribute to the better design of World Bank parliamentary support programs.

Website: http://www.worldbank.org/wbi/governance/parliament/


Centre for Legislative Development, the Philippines

The Centre for Legislative Development is a Philippine-based non-governmental organisation, which aims to assist in the capacity development of national and local legislatures and in broadening citizen participation in the legislative process. It provides training, policy research and information development services concerning legislative strengthening, advocacy, gender and public policy, and local governance in the Asia Pacific region.

Website: http://www.cld.org

International Republican Institute

The International Republican Institute (IRI) was established in April 1983 as a private, non-partisan, non-profit organisation dedicated to advancing democracy worldwide.

IRI conducts a wide range of international programs to promote and strengthen democratic ideals and institutions. IRI programs are individually structured to meet the needs of the participants in the host country. These programs include training on such issues as civic responsibility, the legislative process for newly elected government officials and the mechanics of organizing political parties and election campaigns.

Website: http://www.iri.org

King Prajadhipok’s Institute, Thailand

King Prajadhipok's Institute (KPI) is an independent public organisation under the supervision of the Thai Parliament. The institute undertakes academic work in the form of research, training, and dissemination of information about democracy and governance. KPI also provides consultation on topics related to politics and governance at national and local levels.. KPI organizes conferences to encourage the dissemination of political information both to the public and also to policy makers and government. Parliamentarians are among KPI's main target groups

National Democratic Institute for International Affairs

The National Democratic Institute for International Affairs (NDI) is a nonprofit organisation working to strengthen and expand democracy worldwide.

NDI's programs support the professional development of legislatures, encourage greater public participation in the legislative process, address corruption, and promote the principles of transparency and accountability in national policymaking. Programmes address parliamentary organisation, including legislative oversight, internal rules of procedure, public access to information, effective utilization of parliamentary staff, and the role of political party caucuses. NDI programs also promote greater citizen participation in legislative decision making by encouraging public hearings, town hall meetings, and increased communication between elected officials and their constituents.

Website: http://www.ndi.org/globalp/gov/governance.asp

Parliamentary Centre, Canada

The Parliamentary Centre is a Canadian not-for-profit organisation devoted to improving the effectiveness of representative assemblies and governance mechanisms in Canada and around the world.

Founded in 1968 to strengthen the capacity of Canada’s Parliament, the Centre is now a global agency that also supports democratic institutions in Asia, Africa, Latin America, Eastern Europe and the Middle East. The Centre designs, implements and manages programs; conducts and publishes research; and establishes and expands parliamentary networks. The Centre acts as a broker and facilitator, fostering partnerships and providing access to a range of expertise.

Website: http://www.parlcent.ca

State University of New York

The Centre for International Development at the State University of New York (SUNY/CID) assists legislatures, local governments and court systems to function more effectively, and it also helps citizen groups and non-governmental organisations to interact more successfully with governments. SUNY/CID has also coordinated several conferences on legislative strengthening that have served as a forum for practitioners, legislators, and academics to advance the study and practice of improving legislatures.

Website: http://www.cid.suny.edu

Also based at the State University of New York, the Center for Legislative Development (CLD) also engages in democratic capacity building work. Since 1970, CLD has worked in over two dozen parliaments in Africa, Latin America, Eastern Europe, the Middle East, and other parts of the Islamic world. CLD performs its mission through a program that includes research and writing on democratization issues, assessments of legislative needs, the design of parliamentary capacity-building programs, and evaluating the results thereof.

Website: http://www.albany.edu/cld/



Copyright © 2006 Inter-Parliamentary Union