A federal republic is a federation of states with a republic form of government. At its core, the literal meaning of the word republic when used to reference a form of government means: "a country that is governed by elected representatives and by an elected leader (such as a president) rather than by a king or queen".
In a federal republic, there is a division of powers between the federal government, and the government of the individual subdivisions. While each federal republic manages this division of powers differently, common matters relating to security and defence, and monetary policy are usually handled at the federal level, while matters such as infrastructure maintenance and education policy are usually handled at the regional or local level. However, views differ on what issues should be a federal competence, and subdivisions usually have sovereignty in some matters where the federal government does not have jurisdiction. A federal republic is thus best defined in contrast to a unitary republic, whereby the central government has complete sovereignty over all aspects of political life. This more decentralized structure helps to explain the tendency for more populous countries to operate as federal republics.Forum of Federations: , Schram, Sanford. Handbook of Federal Countries: United States, pg 373–391, 2005. Most federal republics codify the division of powers between orders of government in a written constitution.
The political differences between a federal republic and other Federation, especially federal monarchy under a parliamentary system of government, are largely a matter of legal form rather than political substance, as most federal states are democratic in structure if not practice with checks and balances. However, some federal monarchies, such as the United Arab Emirates are based upon principles other than democracy.
|Argentine Republic||Provinces and one autonomous city||President|
|CIA World Factbook: Austria, 14 May 2009||Republic of Austria||States||President|
|CIA World Factbook: Bosnia and Herzegovina, 14 May 2009||Bosnia and Herzegovina||Entities, Cantons and one federal District||Collective presidency|
|CIA World Factbook: Brazil, 14 May 2009||Federative Republic of Brazil||States and one federal district||President|
|CIA World Factbook: Ethiopia, 14 May 2009||Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia||Regions||President|
|CIA World Factbook: Germany, 14 May 2009||Federal Republic of Germany||States||President|
|CIA World Factbook: India, 14 May 2009||Republic of India||States and territories||President|
|CIA World Factbook: Mexico, 14 May 2009||United Mexican States||States and Mexico City||President|
|CIA World Factbook: Nepal, 14 May 2009||Federal Democratic Republic of Nepal||Provinces||President|
|CIA World Factbook: Nigeria, 14 May 2009||Federal Republic of Nigeria||States and one federal territory||President|
|CIA World Factbook: Pakistan, 14 May 2009||Islamic Republic of Pakistan||Provinces||President|
|Russian Federation||Federal subjects||President|
|CIA World Factbook: Switzerland, 14 May 2009||Swiss Confederation||Cantons||Federal council|
|CIA World Factbook: United States, 14 May 2009||United States of America||States and one federal district||President|
|CIA World Factbook: Venezuela, 14 May 2009||Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela||States, one capital district and federal dependencies||President|