Female Representation but Male Rule? Party Competition and the Political Glass Ceiling
AbstractA large literature has studied the context that affects women’s numerical representation, but few have moved beyond numbers to study the drivers of a gender gap in political influence among elected politicians. Using panel data for the careers of 35.000 Swedish municipal politicians over six election cycles we first document the said gender gap. Women are substantially less likely to be re-elected for office, which is the most important pre-condition for obtaining influential appointments. Turing to the determinants we find that supply factors, primarily family responsibilities, explain some of this gap. Meanwhile, demand factors such as experience, age, education and income do not. Finding that competition between political parties closes the gap, we argue that a negative bias against women among party selectors thrives in contexts where meritocracy is not enforced. Positive correlations between competition and measures of competence for elected politicians of both genders further support this conclusion.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Research Institute of Industrial Economics in its series Working Paper Series with number 923.
Length: 31 pages
Date of creation: 05 Sep 2012
Date of revision:
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Postal: Research Institute of Industrial Economics, Box 55665, SE-102 15 Stockholm, Sweden
Phone: +46 8 665 4500
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Web page: http://www.ifn.se/
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Careers in politics; Political competition; Supply of politicians;
Other versions of this item:
- Folke, Olle & Rickne, Johanna, 2012. "Female representation but male rule? Party competition and the political glass ceiling," Working Paper Series, Center for Labor Studies 2012:9, Uppsala University, Department of Economics.
- H10 - Public Economics - - Structure and Scope of Government - - - General
- J16 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Gender; Non-labor Discrimination
- J21 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Labor Force and Employment, Size, and Structure
- J45 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Particular Labor Markets - - - Public Sector Labor Markets
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2012-09-22 (All new papers)
- NEP-CDM-2012-09-22 (Collective Decision-Making)
- NEP-DEM-2012-09-22 (Demographic Economics)
- NEP-HME-2012-09-22 (Heterodox Microeconomics)
- NEP-LAB-2012-09-22 (Labour Economics)
- NEP-POL-2012-09-22 (Positive Political Economics)
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