12 research outputs found

    Pathways to Power: The Role of Political Parties in Women’s National Political Representation

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    The authors extend previous research on women’s participation in politics by examining the role of female elites in political parties in selecting and supporting women as political candidates. They hypothesize that political parties, in their role as gatekeepers, mediate the relationship between country-level factors, such as women’s participation in the labor force, and political outcomes for women. The article focuses on three outcomes for women: the percentage of female political party leaders, the percentage of female candidates in a country, and the percentage of women elected. New cross-national measures of women’s inclusion in political parties are developed and analyzed in a cross-national, path-analytic model of women in politics to find that (1) women’s position in party elites translates into gains for women as candidates only under proportional representation systems, (2) women’s position in party elites increases the likelihood that female candidates will be elected only in non-proportional representation systems, and (3) parties may be overly sensitive to the perceived liability of women as candidates, when in fact, women have success as candidates across all regions of the world

    Unexpected Winners: The Significance of an Open-List System on Women’s Representation in Poland

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    Scholars have debated the impact of open-list systems on women\u27s representation. While some argue that open lists provide a unique opportunity for voters to overcome parties\u27 bias against women, others argue that they create additional barriers. I examine several mechanisms that impact women\u27s representation within Poland\u27s open-list system. Results suggest that 1) voters shift women\u27s original list placements positively across all parties over three elections; 2) these shifts are more pronounced when women\u27s overall presence on the list and list placement are lower, regardless of party; and 3) positive shifts often result in the election of substantially more women than would have been expected. These findings add to our understanding of open-list systems by documenting variability in the effects of preferential voting across time and party in a postcommunist context. In addition, the unexpected positive effects of preferential voting in Poland add to a growing body of evidence that voters and parties on the center and right support female candidates at rates approaching or similar to parties on the left

    Gender Dependence and Attitudes toward the Distribution of Household Labor: A Comparative and Multilevel Analysis

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    We use comparative and multilevel methods to examine attitudes toward the distribution of household labor in 32 countries. We test hypotheses derived from Baxter and Kane’s (1995) gender dependence theory, which suggests complex relationships between societal-level gender dependence, individual-level gender dependence, and gender attitudes. Country-level data are from the United Nations and survey data are from the International Social Survey Programme’s 2002 Family and Changing Gender Roles III module. Our analysis is among the first to combine societal and individual indicators of gender dependence using multilevel modeling and to test for cross-level interactions between societal and individual gender dependence. Results provide mixed support for gender dependence theory and suggest several revisions – especially pertaining to men’s attitudes

    Systems of Distribution and a Sense of Equity: A Multilevel Analysis of Meritocratic Attitudes in Post-industrial Societies

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    Meritocratic attitudes are defined as general beliefs that education and its correlates should determine personal economic outcomes. Using the International Social Survey Project (ISSP): Social Inequality Module (1992), we examine both individual-level and country-level determinants of pro-meritocratic attitudes. According to self-interest and rational-action theories, individuals with high educational attainment and high personal income are expected to have strong meritocratic beliefs because meritocracy is in their best interest—they would gain under such a system. At the same time, both modernization and post-industrial theories imply that persons living in countries with a high degree of societal meritocracy hold stronger meritocratic beliefs than persons living in countries with low degree of societal meritocracy. Results of the Hierarchical Linear Modeling (HLM) analysis on a data set including 7,972 persons from 14 countries indicate that the impact of individuals’ education and income on meritocratic attitudes occurred as theoretically predicted. We also demonstrate that the relationship between the degree of societal meritocracy and the degree of support for such a system is statistically significant even if national wealth and educational stock (as well as individual-level variables) are controlled. In addition, we discovered that at the beginning of the 1990s a post-communist regime had a negative effect on support for meritocracy

    Pathways to Power: The Role of Political Parties in Women’s National Political Representation

    Get PDF
    The authors extend previous research on women’s participation in politics by examining the role of female elites in political parties in selecting and supporting women as political candidates. They hypothesize that political parties, in their role as gatekeepers, mediate the relationship between country-level factors, such as women’s participation in the labor force, and political outcomes for women. The article focuses on three outcomes for women: the percentage of female political party leaders, the percentage of female candidates in a country, and the percentage of women elected. New cross-national measures of women’s inclusion in political parties are developed and analyzed in a cross-national, path-analytic model of women in politics to find that (1) women’s position in party elites translates into gains for women as candidates only under proportional representation systems, (2) women’s position in party elites increases the likelihood that female candidates will be elected only in non-proportional representation systems, and (3) parties may be overly sensitive to the perceived liability of women as candidates, when in fact, women have success as candidates across all regions of the world

    Gender in Politics

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    Women’s political participation and representation vary dramatically within and between countries. We selectively review the literature on gender in politics, focusing on women’s formal political participation. We discuss both traditional explanations for women’s political participation and representation, such as the supply of women and the demand for women, and newer explanations such as the role of international actors and gender quotas. We also ask whether women are distinctive—does having more women in office make a difference to public policy? Throughout the review we demonstrate that a full understanding of women’s political representation requires both deep knowledge of individual cases such as the United States and broad knowledge comparing women’s participation across countries. We end with four recommended directions for future research: (a) globalizing theory and research, (b) expanding data collection, (c) remembering alternative forms of women’s agency, and (d ) addressing intersectionality
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