Considering how many of us are on Earth at any given time, it is frightening to think that a select few are what makes it turn. This list, originally compiled by Forbes, is compiled based on four factors. These factors include whether or not the male or female individual is in a role of power over others, the second is what financial resources the candidate personally controls. The third factor is whether the candidate exercises power in multiple spheres, and finally, that they do indeed exert their power.

The world is constantly and rapidly changing and is often in a state of unsteady balance, but below are the 20 most powerful men and women running the world today.

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