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Incumbents’ interests, voters’ bias and gender quotas

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  • FRECHETTE, Guillaume R.
  • MANIQUET, François
  • MORELLI, Massimo

Abstract

The adoption of gender quotas inpart y lists has beena voluntary decision by many parties in many countries, and is now a subject of discussioninman y others. The Parity Low passed inF rance in 2001 is particularly interesting because for the first time the quota was set at 50 percent, and the deputies passing the reform are elected in single member districts. In this paper we rationalize parity onthe basis of the self interest of male incumbent deputies: The existence of a voters' bias in favor of male candidates is sufficient to convince the incumbents to advocate for equal gender representationinpart y lists, because it raises the incumbents chances of being re-elected. We confirm empirically the existence of male bias in the French electorate and we show that parity law may have Assembly compositioneffects and policy effects that vary with the electoral system.

Suggested Citation

  • FRECHETTE, Guillaume R. & MANIQUET, François & MORELLI, Massimo, 2006. "Incumbents’ interests, voters’ bias and gender quotas," LIDAM Discussion Papers CORE 2006083, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  • Handle: RePEc:cor:louvco:2006083
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    1. Raghabendra Chattopadhyay & Esther Duflo, 2004. "Women as Policy Makers: Evidence from a Randomized Policy Experiment in India," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 72(5), pages 1409-1443, September.
    2. Massimo Morelli, 2004. "Party Formation and Policy Outcomes under Different Electoral Systems," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 71(3), pages 829-853.
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    Cited by:

    1. Lori Beaman & Raghabendra Chattopadhyay & Esther Duflo & Rohini Pande & Petia Topalova, 2009. "Powerful Women: Does Exposure Reduce Bias?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 124(4), pages 1497-1540.
    2. Esteve-Volart, Berta & Bagues, Manuel, 2012. "Are women pawns in the political game? Evidence from elections to the Spanish Senate," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 96(3), pages 387-399.
    3. Zudenkova, Galina, 2011. "A Model of Party Discipline in a Congress," MPRA Paper 29890, University Library of Munich, Germany.

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