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Are women pawns in the political game? Evidence from elections to the Spanish Senate

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  • Esteve-Volart, Berta
  • Bagues, Manuel

Abstract

This paper investigates the reasons behind the low representation of women among legislators. Using data from Spain, we find that parties tend to nominate female candidates to poorer positions on the ballot. We examine whether this is due to voter bias or party bias, and find two pieces of evidence supporting the latter: female candidates attract more votes, and political competition improves the quality of positions to which female candidates are assigned. Moreover, gender quotas fail to erode the strategic nomination of female candidates. The evidence in this paper helps explain why quotas in candidate lists might often lead to disappointing increases in the number of elected female politicians.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of Public Economics.

Volume (Year): 96 (2012)
Issue (Month): 3 ()
Pages: 387-399

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Handle: RePEc:eee:pubeco:v:96:y:2012:i:3:p:387-399

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Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/505578

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Keywords: Strategic nomination; Gender quotas; Voting;

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References

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  1. Petia Topalova & Esther Duflo & Rohini Pande & Lori Beaman & Raghabendra Chattopadhyay, 2008. "Powerful Women: Does Exposure Reduce Bias?," Working Papers id:1617, eSocialSciences.
  2. Amy King & Andrew Leigh, 2009. "Are Ballot Order Effects Heterogeneous?," Social Science Quarterly, Southwestern Social Science Association, vol. 90(1), pages 71-87.
  3. Raghabendra Chattopadhyay & Esther Duflo, 2004. "Women as Policy Makers: Evidence from a Randomized Policy Experiment in India," Econometrica, Econometric Society, Econometric Society, vol. 72(5), pages 1409-1443, 09.
  4. Frederico Finan & Claudio Ferraz, 2009. "Motivating Politicians: The Impacts of Monetary Incentives on Quality and Performance," Working Papers id:1889, eSocialSciences.
  5. Guillaume R., FRECHETTE & François, MANIQUET & Massimo, MORELLI, 2006. "Incumbents’ Interests, Voters’ Bias and Gender Quotas," Discussion Papers (ECON - Département des Sciences Economiques), Université catholique de Louvain, Département des Sciences Economiques 2006042, Université catholique de Louvain, Département des Sciences Economiques.
  6. Stefano Gagliarducci & Tommaso Nannicini, 2008. "Do Better Paid Politicians Perform Better? Disentangling Incentives from Selection," Working Papers 346, IGIER (Innocenzo Gasparini Institute for Economic Research), Bocconi University.
  7. Shue, Kelly & Luttmer, Erzo F. P., 2006. "Who Misvotes? The Effect of Differential Cognition Costs on Election Outcomes," Working Paper Series rwp06-048, Harvard University, John F. Kennedy School of Government.
  8. De Paola, Maria & Scoppa, Vincenzo & Lombardo, Rosetta, 2010. "Can gender quotas break down negative stereotypes? Evidence from changes in electoral rules," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 94(5-6), pages 344-353, June.
  9. Liran Einav & Leeat Yariv, 2006. "What's in a Surname? The Effects of Surname Initials on Academic Success," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 20(1), pages 175-187, Winter.
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Cited by:
  1. Folke, Olle & Rickne, Johanna, 2012. "Female representation but male rule? Party competition and the political glass ceiling," Working Paper Series, Center for Labor Studies, Uppsala University, Department of Economics 2012:9, Uppsala University, Department of Economics.
  2. Audinga Baltrunaite & Piera Bello & Alessandra Casarico & Paola Profeta, 2012. "Gender Quotas and the Quality of Politicians," CESifo Working Paper Series 3734, CESifo Group Munich.
  3. Stepan Jurajda & Daniel Munich, 2014. "Candidate Ballot Information and Election Outcomes: The Czech Case," CERGE-EI Working Papers wp500, The Center for Economic Research and Graduate Education - Economic Institute, Prague.
  4. Galasso, Vincenzo & Nannicini, Tommaso, 2013. "Men Vote in Mars, Women Vote in Venus: A Survey Experiment in the Field," IZA Discussion Papers 7483, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  5. Sonia Bhalotra & Irma Clots-Figueras & Lakshmi Iyer, 2013. "Path-Breakers: How Does Women’s Political Participation Respond to Electoral Success," Economics Discussion Papers, University of Essex, Department of Economics 740, University of Essex, Department of Economics.
  6. Casas-Arce, Pablo & Saiz, Albert, 2011. "Women and Power: Unwilling, Ineffective, or Held Back?," IZA Discussion Papers 5645, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  7. Folke, Olle & Rickne, Johanna, 2014. "The Glass Ceiling in Politics: Formalization and Empirical Tests," Working Paper Series, Research Institute of Industrial Economics 1034, Research Institute of Industrial Economics.

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