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Gender Interactions Within Hierarchies: Evidence from the Political Arena

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  • Gagliarducci, Stefano
  • Paserman, M. Daniele

Abstract

This paper studies gender interactions within hierarchical organizations using a large data set on the duration of Italian municipal governments elected between 1993 and 2003. A municipal government can be viewed as a hierarchy, whose stability over time depends on the degree of cooperation between and within ranks. We find that in municipalities headed by female mayors, the probability of early termination of the legislature is higher. This result persists and becomes stronger when we control for municipality fixed effects as well as non-random sorting of women into municipalities using regression discontinuity in gender-mixed electoral races decided by a narrow margin. The likelihood that a female mayor survives until the end of her term is lowest when the council is entirely male, and in regions with less favorable attitudes towards working women. The evidence is suggestive that female mayors are less able at fostering cooperation among men, or alternatively, that men are more reluctant to be headed by women. Other interpretations receive less support in the data. Our results may provide an alternative explanation for the underrepresentation of women in leadership positions.

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Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 7272.

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Date of creation: Apr 2009
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Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:7272

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Keywords: Discrimination; Gender; Government stability; Hierarchies;

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Cited by:
  1. Massimo Bordignon & Matteo Gamalerio & Gilberto Turati, 2013. "Decentralization, Vertical Fiscal Imbalance, and Political Selection," DISCE - Working Papers del Dipartimento di Economia e Finanza def2, Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore, Dipartimenti e Istituti di Scienze Economiche (DISCE).
  2. Jordi Brandts & Orsola Garofalo, 2010. "Gender Pairings and Accountability Effect," Labsi Experimental Economics Laboratory University of Siena 034, University of Siena.
  3. Audinga Baltrunaite & Piera Bello & Alessandra Casarico & Paola Profeta, 2012. "Gender Quotas and the Quality of Politicians," CESifo Working Paper Series 3734, CESifo Group Munich.
  4. Folke, Olle & Rickne, Johanna, 2012. "Female Representation but Male Rule? Party Competition and the Political Glass Ceiling," Working Paper Series 923, Research Institute of Industrial Economics.
  5. Fernando Ferreira & Joseph Gyourko, 2011. "Does Gender Matter for Political Leadership? The Case of U.S. Mayors," NBER Working Papers 17671, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Vincenzo Galasso & Tommaso Nannicini, 2013. "Men Vote in Mars, Women Vote in Venus:A Survey Experiment in the Field," Working Papers 487, IGIER (Innocenzo Gasparini Institute for Economic Research), Bocconi University.
  7. Massimiliano Rigon & Giulia Martina Tanzi, 2012. "Does gender matter for public spending? Empirical evidence from Italian municipalities," Temi di discussione (Economic working papers) 862, Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area.
  8. Giacomo De Giorgi & Marco Paccagnella & Michele Pellizzari, 2013. "Gender complementarities in the labor market," Questioni di Economia e Finanza (Occasional Papers) 183, Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area.
  9. Sonia Bhalotra & Irma Clots-Figueras & Lakshmi Iyer, 2013. "Path-Breakers: How Does Women’s Political Participation Respond to Electoral Success?," Harvard Business School Working Papers 14-035, Harvard Business School.
  10. Stadelmann, David & Portmann, Marco & Eichenberger, Reiner, 2013. "How do Female Preferences Influence Political Decisions by Female and Male Representatives?," Annual Conference 2013 (Duesseldorf): Competition Policy and Regulation in a Global Economic Order 79748, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
  11. Rigon, Massimiliano & Tanzi, Giulia M., 2011. "Does gender matter for public spending? Empirical evidence from Italian municipalities," MPRA Paper 34845, University Library of Munich, Germany.

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