In this paper, the problem of robust stability of systems subject to parametric uncertainties is considered. Sufficient conditions for the existence of parameter-dependent Lyapunov functions are given in terms of a criterion which is reminiscent of, but less conservative than, Popov's stability criterion. An equivalent frequency-domain criterion is demonstrated. The relative sharpness of the proposed test and existing stability criteria is then discussed. The use of parameter-dependent Lyapunov functions for robust controller synthesis is then considered. It is shown that the search for robustly stabilizing controllers may be limited to controllers with the same order as the original plant. A possible synthesis procedure and a numerical example are then discussed. © 1996 IEEE.