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This paper is concerned with the design of state-feedback variable-structure controllers (VSCs) for a class of continuous-time switched plants. In particular, a new VSC design method based on Lyapunov-Metzler (LM) inequalities and the properties of strictly positive real (SPR) systems is suggested. The method is applied to the control of a DC-DC power converter. The performance of the resulting control system is superior to that afforded by a recently proposed alternative sliding-mode control technique. The definition of LM-SPR systems and its direct application to establish a procedure for designing the switching rule and VSC input are presented.