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GOVERNANCE - Insights, Inspiration, & Innovation

Commonwealth Governance - Fast Facts

The Commonwealth is made up of 54 independent countries that work together to pursue common goals which promote development, democracy, and peace. Our combined population of 2.2 billion is almost a third of the global population.  Almost 60% of our population is under the age of 30.
  • Since 1991, 12 Commonwealth member countries have moved to multi-party democracy from military or one-party rule.
  • The Commonwealth has observed more than 140 elections in 36 countries since 1980.
  • In Sub-Saharan Africa, eight of the top 10 countries with the lowest levels of corruption are Commonwealth members, according to the Corruption Perceptions Index.
  • Twenty-seven Commonwealth countries have high or very high human development according to the inequality-adjusted Human Development Index.
  • Seven of the top 10 countries in the Ibrahim Index of African Governance, which measures rule of law, human rights, participation, human development and sustainable economic opportunity, are Commonwealth members.
  • Half of the top 20 global emerging cities are in the Commonwealth.
  • Five of the best performing 15 countries in the Youth Development Index are Commonwealth members.
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Managing Change

If you are aged 16 to 24, now is your chance to apply to become a member of the Prime Minister's Youth Council.  As a Youth Council member you would provide Prime Minister Trudeau input on national issues such as employment, access to education, building stronger communities, climate change and clean growth. The Council will meet multiple times a year.

Apply online.​

Commonwealth organisations are involved in diverse activities, from helping countries with trade negotiations to encouraging women’s leadership, building the small business sector, supporting youth participation at all levels of society and providing experts to write laws.

promotes democracy, rule of law, human rights, good governance and social and economic development. We are a voice for small states and a champion for youth empowerment. 

​The next Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) will be in June, Rwanda 2020.

The Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA) exists to develop, promote and support Parliamentarians and their staff to identify benchmarks of good governance and to implement the enduring values of the Commonwealth.

  • Commonwealth Judicial Education Institute 

​Chief Justices of the Commonwealth countries are Patrons to the Institute.  The Commonwealth Judicial Education Institute became an independent parallel official Commonwealth NGO in 1998, and is located at the Dalhousie Law School in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada. The work of the Institute is carried out throughout the world in cooperation with local and regional judges' and magistrates' associations and bodies. 

provides a space for high-level dialogue between business and Government leaders immediately preceding the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in Rwanda, June 2020.  The CBF also serves as a platform for Commonwealth nations to showcase investment opportunities to the global business community. The Forum provides an opportunity to influence the debate on global trade and investment issues.

Declaration on "What makes Societies Resilient", the results of a conference immediately preceding the 2015 Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in Malta, November 2015.

developed a call to action for gender equality

allows for cross-cultural connection and learning between participants and consensus on policies to address the challenges and opportunities facing young people.

strengthening and mobilizing Civil Society in support of Commonwealth principles and priorities.

​is an intergovernmental organisation created by Commonwealth Heads of Government in 1987 to promote the development and sharing of open learning and distance education knowledge, resources and technologies.  Hosted by the Government of Canada with headquarters in Burnaby, British Columbia, COL is the world’s only intergovernmental organisation solely concerned with the promotion and development of distance education and open learning. 

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