Women’s Representation in Europe — A Comparison Between the National Parliaments and the European Parliament

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Series Details Vol.6, No.4, December 2008 p463-485
Publication Date December 2008
ISSN 1472-4790
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Abstract: Prior research on women's representation conducted in various areas of the world has emphasized the type of electoral system, quotas, the economic affluence of a country and the timing of women's suffrage, as well as the percentage of women in leadership positions and the political culture. In this comparative study all of these characteristics are first investigated for each country's national parliament. In a second step, the robustness of the model is tested by applying it to the European parliamentary elections. In this sense, this study is novel, as it is the first comparative study to test the robustness of a model in two different settings. This analysis reveals that the model generated for the national level does not provide a good fit for explaining women's representation in the European Parliament. Consequently, it is still impossible to generalize about the state of women's representation in Europe.

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