Number of countries with women in highest position of executive power 1960-2023

Number of countries where the de facto highest position of executive power was held by a woman from 1960 to 2023

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Release date

August 2023



Survey time period

1960 to Aug. 4, 2023

Supplementary notes

*August 04, 2023.

This data refers to all countries that are current (or defunct, i.e. Yugoslavia) United Nations member states. This list does not include non-member states, such as Taiwan (which currently has a female leader).

This data was compiled from various sources, mostly from The Council of Women World Leaders and Encyclopedia Britannica, but also the official website of the Austrian, Barbadian, and Nepalese governments, as well as news outlets such as the BBC, RNZ, and peoplepill.

This data deals with the de facto leaders of countries, and does not include women who have held the title of President or Prime Minister who served in either a ceremonial role, or as deputy to another leader. For example, while Ireland has had two female Presidents, this is not included as executive power lies with the Taoiseach (Prime Minister).

This data shows the number of countries with women in the highest position of executive power at any point in that year, not how many women held these roles simultaneously.

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