This is part of a science fantasy setting I've been working on in an on-and-off manner over the last few months. The gist of it is that an interstellar human civilisation (just below level 2 on the Kardashev scale) is nearly wiped out by some sort of apocalyptic event, but the one ship traversing an unexplored bit of the galaxy manages to survive it, and winds up on a dry, cold, partly-terraformed planet which its crew and passengers go on to settle. Fast forward a few thousand years and their descendants have settled large parts of the planet (this rate of colonisation is probably slightly ASB, but never mind), and they've developed several different religious establishments that argue over how said events took place.
The planet is divided into different endorrheic lake basins, in between which is a vast, icy desert wasteland. The largest of these basins is governed by the United Provinces, a loose confederacy of eighteen provinces of various sizes, with a weak federal government that mostly settles disputes between the provinces and establishes rules of commerce and diplomacy that all provinces have to abide by. The trade centre of the United Provinces is Haumünd, which is located at the mouth of the great River Hau, and along with a large but sparsely populated hinterland it makes up the most populous of the eighteen provinces.
Haumünd's government is inspired in part by the City of London and the early Roman Republic, and consists of a Lord Mayor, who is elected by an incredibly byzantine electoral college system (entire books have been written in an effort to make sense of it, but to sum it up you could say Bureaucrats, Religions and Guilds, Oh My!
), and the Common Council, which is made up of three Courts: the Court of Burgesses, which is elected by the inhabitants of geographical wards (wealth qualifications take away the vote from a large number of people), the Court of Liverymen, which is made up of representatives from the various guilds (the Great Seven guilds - that is, the Mercers, the Fishers, the Grocers, the Chandlers, the Goldsmiths, the Blacksmiths, and the Tailors - have two votes, the other fourteen guilds have only one), and the Court of Aldermen, which is partly elected by the two other courts and partly appointed by the Lord Mayor. There's also a large number of senior magistrates of various kinds, who are chosen by the same electoral college that elects the Lord Mayor.