New tool to measure democratic credentials of parliaments

November 16, 2023

In Georgia, UNDP supports parliament to increase transparency, citizen engagement and oversight.

Photo: UNDP Georgia

New York City - The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) launched today the multi-partner initiative Indicators for Democratic Parliaments, a platform to help assess the capacity and performance of parliaments to become stronger democratic institutions. With a series of 25 indicators, the new tool can be applied to all parliaments, regardless of size, political context or system. 

The set of indicators are aligned directly with the UN Sustainable Development Goal targets 16.6 and 16.7, which seek to develop effective, accountable and transparent institutions to ensure inclusive, participatory and representative decision-making at all levels.

"Parliaments are the lynchpins of democratic governance in societies, and parliamentarians today must grapple with the multiple challenges that countries face. The indicators are designed to help  them and their partners assess their capacities to do so, and support their learning and further development”, stated Sarah Lister, Head of Governance at UNDP.

"The decisions taken by parliaments shape the future of society and of our planet. That’s why we believe that the indicators are so important as they can bring a new impetus to parliamentary development. We stand ready to support parliaments in using the indicators to help strengthen parliamentary institutions worldwide", said Martin Chungong, Secretary General of IPU.

Designed primarily for parliaments to grade themselves, the new tools assess areas of work, such as lawmaking, budgeting and oversight, gender mainstreaming and electoral integrity. Representatives of the civil society, media, academia and general public can also access the tool to measure any given parliament’s performance. 

The platform is a culmination of research that began in 2019. Representatives of 50 parliaments from around the world provided input to develop the set of indicators.

The series of indicators have been developed through a joint initiative led by the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU). UNDP is one of the partner organisations, together with Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA), Directorio Legislativo Foundation, Inter Pares / International IDEA, National Democratic Institute (NDI), UN Women and Westminster Foundation for Democracy (WFD). 

Register here for an online introduction to the Indicators on:

21 November 2023, 10:00–11:30 CET or 22 November 2023, 16:00–17:30 CET. 

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