5.1 General context
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There is no distinct definition of youth participation in Slovenia. ‘Youth’ is defined as relating to individuals from 15 to 29 years of age, and all measures and programmes related to youth participation are designed for this age group.
Institutions of representative democracy
The Republic of Slovenia is a parliamentary democracy: it is a constitutional republic with a centralized form of government.
Head of state
The head of state is the President of the Republic, who is directly elected and holds only ceremonial powers.
Slovenia has a bicameral parliament composed of the National Assembly (Državni zbor; or lower house) and the National Council (Državni svet; or upper house). The National Assembly has 90 deputies and serves as the main legislative chamber, while the National Council has 40 members representing social, economic, professional and local interests, and has minor legislative powers.
The executive authority in the country is the Government headed by the Prime Minister with a team of ministers. The Prime Minister and the ministers are elected by and responsible to the National Assembly.
Slovenia does not have regional authorities. At the local level, there are 212 municipalities, each with a directly elected mayor as the executive branch, and a directly elected municipal council as the legislative branch of local government.
Main legal principles concerning elections
Elections in Slovenia are based on free universal suffrage by secret ballot. The right to elect a candidate, or active right, and the right to run for an office, or passive right, are optional (that is, not mandatory). Voters have many modalities of voting at their disposal: general voting (at the polling station), early voting (at a special polling station), postal voting (for voters in care in special facilities, hospitals or penal institutions), voting outside the district of permanent residence, conventional voting at home for citizens unable to visit polling stations, and voting from abroad.