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Women in politics: evidence from the Indian states

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  • Irma Clots-Figueras

Abstract

This paper uses panel data from the 16 main states in India during the period 1967- 1999 to study the effects of having higher female representation in the State Legislatures on public goods, policy and expenditure. I find that women legislators make different decisions than men legislators. Moreover, women elected in seats reserved for scheduled castes and tribes make different decisions compared to women elected in general seats. Scheduled caste/tribe women favour capital investments, especially on low tiers of education and irrigation. They also favour “women-friendly” laws, such as amendments to the Hindu Succession Act that give women the same inheritance rights as men. In contrast, general women legislators do not have any impact on “women-friendly” laws, oppose redistributive policies such as land reforms, favour pro-rich expenditure and invest in high tiers of education.

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File URL: http://eprints.lse.ac.uk/19294/
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library in its series LSE Research Online Documents on Economics with number 19294.

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Length: 48 pages
Date of creation: Oct 2005
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:ehl:lserod:19294

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Keywords: gender; caste; panel data; policy; India.;

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  1. David S. Lee, 2001. "The Electoral Advantage to Incumbency and Voters' Valuation of Politicians' Experience: A Regression Discontinuity Analysis of Elections to the U.S..," NBER Working Papers 8441, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Timothy Besley & Robin Burgess, 2002. "The Political Economy Of Government Responsiveness: Theory And Evidence From India," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, MIT Press, vol. 117(4), pages 1415-1451, November.
  3. Besley, Timothy & Coate, Stephen, 1997. "An Economic Model of Representative Democracy," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, MIT Press, vol. 112(1), pages 85-114, February.
  4. Stephen Coate & Timothy Besley, 2000. "Elected versus Appointed Regulators: Theory and Evidence," NBER Working Papers 7579, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Timothy Besley & Robin Burgess, 2000. "Land Reform, Poverty Reduction, And Growth: Evidence From India," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, MIT Press, vol. 115(2), pages 389-430, May.
  6. Timothy Besley & Anne Case, 1994. "Unnatural Experiments? Estimating the Incidence of Endogenous Policies," NBER Working Papers 4956, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Anthony Downs, 1957. "An Economic Theory of Political Action in a Democracy," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, University of Chicago Press, vol. 65, pages 135.
  8. Dreze, Jean & Sen, Amartya, 2002. "India: Development and Participation," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, Oxford University Press, edition 2, number 9780199257492, October.
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