The Boards of Executive Directors consists of the President and 25 Executive Directors. The President is the presiding officer, and ordinarily has no vote except a deciding vote in case of an equal division. The Executive Directors as individuals cannot exercise any power nor commit or represent the Bank unless specifically authorized by the Board to do so. With the term beginning November 1, 2010, the number of Executive Directors increased by one, totalling 25.
Alternates to Executive Directors have full power to act in the absence of their respective Executive Directors. Furthermore, Senior Advisors and Advisors assist the Executive Directors in their work, who can, along with the Alternates to Executive Directors, attend most Board meetings in an advisory capacity, without voting rights.
The first Board consisted of 12 Executive Directors, as prescribed in the IBRD Articles of Agreement, Article V Section 4(b). Increases in the number of elected Executive Directors require a decision of the Boards of Governors by an 80% majority of the total voting power. Before November 1, 1992, there were 22 Executive Directors, 17 of whom were elected. In 1992, in view of the large number of new members that had joined the Bank, the number of elected Executive Directors increased to 20. The two new seats, Russia and a new group around Switzerland, brought the total number of Executive Directors to 24. With the term beginning November 1, 2010, the number of Executive Directors increased by one, totalling 25.