Imperian has hundreds of help files to help you learn more about the game and how to play.
10.1 The political structure of city-states
A city-state is ruled, first and foremost, by a ruling council. These council members can have different names, such as Mukhtar, Ephor, or Advisor. HELP <city> will show you what the ruling council name for that city is. In order to become a member of the ruling council (which normally have five members), you must contest an existing member in an election, and triumph in the election. HELP ELECTIONS will give you detailed information about elections and referendums. Out of the ruling council members, one member, who must be approved by every council member but one, becomes the leader of that city. That leader then enjoys immunity from electoral challenges from the populace. The leader of the ruling council then may appoint people to the heads of seven different ministries, and each of these ministers may appoint aides. These are: Ministry of the Ambassador (responsible for newbies) Ministry of War (responsible for all military matters) Ministry of Security (responsible for internal security) Ministry of the Treasury (responsible for the working funds of the city) Ministry of the Steward (responsible for the city coffers) Ministry of Trade (responsible for trade with villages) Ministry of the Chancellor (responsible for various internal economics) Ministry of Cultural Affairs (responsible for events and morale) So, in summary: The people elect the ruling council. The ruling council selects one of their number to be the leader. The leader appoints people to the seven ministries. The ministers appoint aides. Further help on the various ministries may be found under section 10.4 (Ministries).