The Kryptonian Empire is an intensely isolationist state populated by the humanoid Kryptonian species. They live near the extreme coreward edge of known space, almost directly to coreward of Earth and Nova Terra.
The Kryptonian Government consists of an hereditary monarch (the Emperor or Empress), and The Council.
The Monarch held significant political power, being able to remove members of the council at will, and even dissolved the council if they so wished.
While the Monarchy (as a concept) predates Unification, the monarchy has at various times changed hands among the royal houses. It is known that at various times the Houses of El, Zod, Var, and Am have all held the monarchy.
The Empire is divided into five guilds: Labor (which includes Engineers), Science (which includes medicine), Art (which includes commerce), Military, and Religious.
The High Council of the Empire consists of 17 members (Three from each Guild, except for Labor which as five). Each Guild's representation on the council includes a 'Minister' of the guild, and a 'Deputy Minister'. Each Guild choses the method by which it’s representatives on the Council are selected (for example the Religious guild representatives are selected by the High Priest/Priestess of Rao, who never serves on the Council). Once on the Council, the members then vote to select a ‘Prime Minister’ from their ranks, excluding the representatives of the Military Guild (who serve the Empire), and the Religious Guild (who serve the people).
The Kryptonian Empire was a product of the unification of Krypton approximately 15 thousand years ago, and as such predates most of the other civilizations in the galaxy. To put this in perspective, Krypton was unified prior to humanity developing the wheel.
Space flight was achieved soon after, and FTL travel by eight thousand years ago.
Development in the Empire has been historically slow, with humanity achieving population parity around 2200, and technological parity around 3100.
Around 2500 the Kryptonian Empire appeared to be on the verge of launching a massive invasion of all human controlled space. This was called off for some reason, and the Empire went ‘dark’ to the rest of the galaxy. It was in fact this threat of galactic genocide that spurred on the formation and development of the nascent human stellar empires including the unification of the home sectors of humanity into the UN.
Kryptonian technology has been fully competitive with the galactic mainstream at least since first contact was made with them in the mid-3rd millenium. In recent centuries little information on their specialties and preferred techniques has been available because of their extreme reluctance to interact with the rest of the galaxy.
What few observations have been made by various traders indicate that the Kryptonians possess a high but eccentric science that makes extensive use of exotic-physics principles and assorted crystalline devices. Detailed analysis of these devices has generally been impractical, and ships with sensor gear sophisticated enough to develop clear imagery of their installations are usually turned away at the border by heavily armed customs and border patrol forces. They are never allowed into the inner system near Kryptonian stars.
From what has been reconstructed from the routine use of navigation sensors on civilian merchantmen and the like, two things are certain. On the one hand, the Kryptonians definitely have technologies not known to galactic civilization as a whole, or on a scale larger than seen anywhere else in the galaxy. On the other, they also fail to make use of other technologies routinely seen elsewhere in known space. It is inferred that developing in isolation, the Kryptonian scientific community has advanced far along paths not explored by other civilizations, while at the same time ignoring or abandoning certain fields that are well known and heavily used among non-Kryptonians.
As noted above, the Kryptonians exist largely in isolation. The only major interaction between Krypton and the rest of the galaxy is in a handful of trade a diplomatic ports, none of which are on Krypton (Rao 4). The nearest to Krypton is on the second moon of Rao 6. The reader may wish to compare this policy on foreign relations to that of Tokugawa Japan)
The only Kryptonian diplomatic mission is located on Earth.