A Year of Legislative Strengthening

  • Jenna Ruffoni and the Legislative Strengthening Team

For the first time in over twenty years, authoritarian governments outnumber liberal democracies, according to a Varieties of Democracy Institute (V-Dem) report. However, in this year of elections, 1.8 billion potential voters have an opportunity to participate in the democratic process and make their voices heard. With elections come newly elected officials, and with thousands of parliamentarians taking office in the next several months, many of them for the first time, strengthening legislatures should become a priority for development partners. 

IRI is proud to collaborate and support parliaments worldwide to advance responsive and democratic governance and looks forward to opportunities to engage new members and democratic champions through our peer learning exchanges. In 2023 alone, with the support of the House Democracy Partnership (HDP) and the Institute for Representative Government (IRG), IRI successfully organized and conducted 13 parliamentary exchanges, bringing together more than 600 members of parliament and staff from 34 countries. Through these peer engagement opportunities, legislators and staff worked to foster resilience and collaboration, and renew commitment to democracy in parliaments around the world. Highlights of IRI’s work in 2023 include: 

HDP Chairman Vern Buchanan addresses HDP MPs in Washington, DC

As IRI continues its work bolstering legislatures throughout 2024, we look to build on progress made in 2023, innovate program approaches, and implement responsive and timely programming in close collaboration with partners around the world. 

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