This article needs additional citations for verification . (December 2017) (Learn how and when to remove this template message)
A ward is a local authority area, typically used for electoral purposes. In some countries, wards are usually named after neighbourhoods, thoroughfares, parishes, landmarks, geographical features and in some cases historical figures connected to the area (e.g. William Morris Ward in the London Borough of Waltham Forest). It is common in the United States for wards to simply be numbered.
In Swahili/Kiswahili Local Ward is called Kata.
In Australia, Canada, Monaco, New Zealand, Sri Lanka, South Africa, the United Kingdom, and the United States, they are an electoral district within a district or municipality, used in local government elections. In the United States, wards are usually subdivided into precincts for polling purposes.
In the Republic of Ireland, urban Wards and rural District Electoral Divisions were renamed Electoral Divisions in 1994.The electoral districts for local authorities are often popularly called "wards". These consist of multiple electoral divisions, and are officially called "local electoral areas".
In the case of a municipal amalgamation, the former cities and towns that make up the new metropolis may be referred to as wards.
A borough is an administrative division in various English-speaking countries. In principle, the term borough designates a self-governing walled town, although in practice, official use of the term varies widely.
A municipality is usually a single administrative division having corporate status and powers of self-government or jurisdiction as granted by national and regional laws to which it is subordinate.
A county is a geographical region of a country used for administrative or other purposes in certain modern nations. The term is derived from the Old French conté or cunté denoting a jurisdiction under the sovereignty of a count (earl) or a viscount. Literal equivalents in other languages, derived from the equivalent of "count", are now seldom used officially, including comté, contea, contado, comtat, condado, Grafschaft, graafschap, and zhupa in Slavic languages; terms equivalent to English language administrative terms such as municipality, district, circuit and commune/community are now often instead used.
An independent city or independent town is a city or town that does not form part of another general-purpose local government entity.
Local government is a generic term for the lowest tiers of public administration within a particular sovereign state. This particular usage of the word government refers specifically to a level of administration that is both geographically-localised and has limited powers. While in some countries, "government" is normally reserved purely for a national administration (government), the term local government is always used specifically in contrast to national government – as well as, in many cases, the activities of sub-national, first-level administrative divisions. Local governments generally act only within powers specifically delegated to them by law and/or directives of a higher level of government. In federal states, local government generally comprises a third or fourth tier of government, whereas in unitary states, local government usually occupies the second or third tier of government.
Japan is divided into 47 prefectures, which rank immediately below the national government and form the country's first level of jurisdiction and administrative division. They include 43 prefectures proper two urban prefectures, one "circuit" or "territory" and one metropolis. In 1868, the Meiji Fuhanken sanchisei administration created the first prefectures to replace the urban and rural administrators in the parts of the country previously controlled directly by the shogunate and a few territories of rebels/shogunate loyalists who had not submitted to the new government such as Aizu/Wakamatsu. In 1871, all remaining feudal domains (han) were also transformed into prefectures, so that prefectures subdivided the whole country. In several waves of territorial consolidation, today's 47 prefectures were formed by the turn of the century. In many instances, these are contiguous with the ancient ritsuryō provinces of Japan.
A district is a type of administrative division that, in some countries, is managed by the local government. Across the world, areas known as "districts" vary greatly in size, spanning regions or counties, several municipalities, subdivisions of municipalities, school district, or political district.
In Japan, a district is composed of one or more rural municipalities. Districts have no governing function, and are only used for geographic or statistical purposes such as mailing addresses.
The administrative geography of the United Kingdom is complex, multi-layered and non-uniform. The United Kingdom, a sovereign state to the northwest of continental Europe, consists of England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales. For local government in the United Kingdom, England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales each have their own system of administrative and geographic demarcation. Consequently, there is "no common stratum of administrative unit encompassing the United Kingdom".
An alderman is a member of a municipal assembly or council in many jurisdictions founded upon English law. The term may be titular, denoting a high-ranking member of a borough or county council, a council member chosen by the elected members themselves rather than by popular vote, or a council member elected by voters.
Local government in the United States refers to governmental jurisdictions below the level of the state. Most states and territories have at least two tiers of local government: counties and municipalities. In some states, counties are divided into townships. There are several different types of jurisdictions at the municipal level, including the city, town, borough, and village. The types and nature of these municipal entities vary from state to state. In addition to these general-purpose local governments, states may also create special-purpose local governments.
The bureaucratic administration of Japan is divided into three basic levels; national, prefectural, and municipal. Below the national government there are 47 prefectures, six of which are further subdivided into subprefectures to better service large geographical areas or remote islands. The municipalities are the lowest level of government; the twenty most-populated cities outside Tokyo Metropolis are known as designated cities and are subdivided into wards.
An electoral division is the smallest legally defined administrative areas in Ireland for which small area population statistics are published from the Census. There are a total of 3,440 electoral divisions in Ireland, with an average population of 1,447 and average area of 20.4 square kilometres. They are used to define local electoral areas for elections to county and city councils and to define constituencies in elections to Dáil Éireann. Until 1994, they were known as district electoral divisions (DED) in the county council areas and wards in the five county boroughs which were then in existence. Electoral divisions are local administrative units within the NUTS system of the European Union.
A borough in some U.S. states is a unit of local government or other administrative division below the level of the state. The term is currently used in six states:
The Local Government Act 1888 was an Act of Parliament which established county councils and county borough councils in England and Wales. It came into effect on 1 April 1889, except for the County of London, which came into existence on 21 March at the request of the London County Council.
The wards and electoral divisions in the United Kingdom are electoral districts at sub-national level represented by one or more councillors. The ward is the primary unit of English electoral geography for civil parishes and borough and district councils, electoral ward is the unit used by Welsh principal councils, while the electoral division is the unit used by English county councils and some unitary authorities. Each ward/division has an average electorate of about 5,500 people, but ward-population counts can vary substantially. As at the end of 2014 there were 9,456 electoral wards/divisions in the UK.
A local government area (LGA) is an administrative division of a country that a local government is responsible for. The size of an LGA varies by country but it is generally a subdivision of a state, province, division, or territory.
Local government in the Australian state of Victoria consists of 79 local government areas (LGAs). Also referred to as municipalities, Victorian LGAs are classified as cities (34), shires (38), rural cities (6) and boroughs (1). In general, an urban or suburban LGA is called a city and is governed by a City Council, while a rural LGA covering a larger rural area is usually called a shire and is governed by a Shire Council. Local councils have the same administrative functions and similar political structures, regardless of their classification. They will typically have an elected council and usually a mayor or shire president responsible for chairing meetings of the council. The City of Melbourne has a Lord Mayor and Deputy Lord Mayor, who are directly elected, and in the other councils a mayor and deputy mayor are elected by fellow Councillors from among their own number. Since 2017, the mayor of the City of Greater Geelong has not been directly elected. In addition, there are also 10 unincorporated areas, consisting of small islands or ski resorts, which are administered either by the state government or management boards.