Building Parliamentary Capacity

Building Parliamentary Capacity


Parliaments are a critical component of a country’s governance system. Typically, they oversee the executive arm of the government, represent the electorate, and formulate and enact legislation. To perform these roles, parliaments need to maintain training programs to strengthen and ensure effective, proactive, and responsive governance. Building the capacity of both Members of the Parliaments (MPs) and parliamentary staff ensures that the needs of all members of the legislature are met and helps sustain parliamentary institutions for the challenges of tomorrow. At a time when public expectation for improved democracy is on the rise and that the executive power is still weakening the structure of parliamentary governance in many countries, it is more important than ever to build stronger parliament. McGill University’s School of Continuing Studies, in collaboration with the World Bank, the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association and other international partners, offers two programs: one tailored toward staff and the other focusing on newly elected MPs. It is also emerging as a leader. The School is also emerging as a leader in cutting-edge parliamentary research.

Download our parliamentary programs brochure.




The Professional Development Certificate in Parliamentary Management program, designed for parliamentary staff, consists of six expert-moderated online courses, each involving live video discussions, pre-recorded video sessions, and moderated online discussion forums complemented by one-on-one professional mentoring. This program helps develop a well-trained cadre of mid-and senior-level staff to bolster parliamentary democracy and build the legislatures of tomorrow.


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The Professional Development Certificate in Parliamentary Governance program, designed for newly elected Members of Parliament from Small States, focuses on the fundamentals of parliamentary governance. It includes an overview of the three arms of government, different parliamentary models in the Commonwealth, the core functions of parliament, executive- legislative relations, the role of an MP, as well as the relationship between parliament and the media. Combining theory and practice, the program uses a blended learning methodology of face-to-face and online courses. This program is sponsored by the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association.

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The School of Continuing Studies can customize its programs and courses to meet specific needs of a country or a region. Customized programs or courses could be delivered in the host country or at McGill University in Montreal.

Most recently, customized programs have been held in West Africa, East Africa and in the Pacific region.

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For more information contact us at parl.scs [at] mcgill.ca






One of the key elements of our parliamentary program is cutting-edge research, the results of which inform the content of our programs. In turn, program participants provide invaluable insights and commentary on our research findings. In this way, we ensure that our research is not just academically rigorous but also practical and actionable.

Online Lecture Series: The Role of Parliaments in Curbing Corruption

 The role of parliaments in curbing corruption image

McGill University's School of Continuing Studies is pleased to offer a free three-lecture online learning event discussing the key role played by parliaments and constraints they face in curbing corruption.

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Join McGill Parliamentary Community!

This group was created to facilitate communication between participants and alumni of McGill University Programs for Parliamentary Staff and Members of Parliament: Professional Development Certificate in Parliamentary Management & Professional Development Certificate in Parliamentary Governance.


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