Skip to main content
×
×
Home

Influences on the Number and Gender of Candidates in Canadian Local Elections

  • Sandra Breux (a1), Jérôme Couture (a2) and Royce Koop (a3)
Abstract

We explore influences on the number of candidates, and female candidates in particular, who contest mayoral elections in Canada. We draw on an original cross-national data set of election results from mayoral elections in Canada's 100 largest cities between 2006 and 2017. An average of 4.96 candidates contested mayoral elections in this period, and 16 per cent of all candidates were women. Density and mayoral prestige were related to higher numbers of candidates; in contrast, incumbent candidates and the availability of other elected positions were related to lower numbers. Notably, the presence of a female incumbent was related to higher numbers of women running for the position of mayor; in contrast, higher mayoral salaries were associated with an increase in the number of male but not female candidates. This analysis enhances our understanding of the factors underlying contested local elections, as well as the factors that appear to facilitate women contesting local elections.

L'objectif de cet article est d'explorer les facteurs susceptibles d'influencer le nombre de candidats, et plus précisément de candidates, qui se présentent aux élections municipales au Canada. À partir d'une base de données portant sur les élections à la mairie au sein des 100 plus grandes villes du Canada entre 2006 et 2017, nous montrons qu'en moyenne, au cours de cette période, 4,96 candidats se sont présentés aux élections municipales. De plus, parmi l'ensemble des candidats, 16 per cent d'entre eux étaient des femmes. Deux facteurs contribuent à expliquer en partie la présence d'un nombre plus élevé de candidats : la densité de la population d'une part et le prestige du poste d'autre part. Deux facteurs contribuent également à expliquer un nombre plus faible de candidats : la présence de candidat sortant et la présence d'autres postes électifs à pourvoir. Plus encore, selon le sexe des candidats, des distinctions apparaissent : les candidates sont plus susceptibles de se présenter si le candidat sortant est une femme. Les salaires contribuent également à augmenter le nombre de candidats, mais pas de candidates. Cette analyse permet donc d'affiner notre compréhension des joutes électorales à la mairie, ainsi que d'identifier certains facteurs qui semblent influencer la présence de candidates.

Copyright
Corresponding author
*Corresponding author. Email: royce.koop@umanitoba.ca
References
Hide All
Andrew, Caroline, Biles, John, Siemiatycki, Myer and Tolley, Erin. 2008. Electing a Diverse Canada: The Representation of Immigrants, Minorities and Women. Vancouver: UBC Press
Anzia, Sarah F. and Berry, Christopher R.. 2011. “The Jackie (and Jill) Robinson Effect: Why Do Congresswomen Outperform Congressmen?American Journal of Political Science 5(3): 478–93.
Barnes, Tiffany D. 2016. Gendering Legislative Behavior: Institutional Contraints and Collaboration. New York: Cambridge University Press.
Breux, Sandra and Bherer, Laurence. 2011. Les élections municipales au Québec: enjeux et perspectives. Québec: Presses de l'Université Laval.
Breux, Sandra and Couture, Jérôme. 2018. Accountability and Responsiveness at the Municipal Level: Views from Canada. Montreal/Kingston: McGill-Queen's University Press.
Breux, Sandra, Couture, Jérôme and Koop, Royce. 2017. “Turnout in Local Elections: Evidence from Canadian Cities, 2004–2014.” Canadian Journal of Political Science 50(3): 699722.
Butler, Daniel M. and Preece, Jessica Robinson. 2016. “Recruitment and Perceptions of Gender Bias in Party Leader Support.” Political Research Quarterly 69(4): 842–51.
Carroll, Susan J. and Sanbonmatsu, Kira. 2010. “Entering the Mayor's Office: Women's Decisions to Run for Municipal Office.” Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Midwest Political Science Association, Chicago.
Champagne, Patrick and Patry, Renaud. 2004. “La participation électorale dans les municipalités du Québec.” Muni-stat 1.
Couture, Jérôme. 2015. Essaient-ils d'acheter l’élection et si oui, y parviennent-ils? Doctoral dissertation, Université Laval, Québec.
Couture, Jérôme, Breux, Sandra and Bherer, Laurence. 2014. « Analyse écologique des déterminants de la participation électorale municipale au Québec. » Canadian Journal of Political Science 47(4): 787812.
Couture, Jérôme, Breux, Sandra and Bherer, Laurence. 2018. “Political Accountability and Responsiveness: What is the Role of Municipal Political Parties?” In Accountability and Responsiveness at the Municipal Level: Views from Canada, ed. Breux, S. and Couture, J.. Montreal/Kingston: McGill-Queen's University Press.
Crowder-Meyer, Melody, Gadarian, Shana Kushner and Trounstine, Jessica. 2015. “Electoral Institutions, Gender Stereotypes and Women's Local Representation.” Politics, Groups & Identities 3(2): 318–34.
Cutler, Frederick and Matthews, J. Scott. 2005. “The Challenge of Municipal Voting: Vancouver 2002.” Canadian Journal of Political Science 38(2): 359–82.
De Benedetto, Marco Alberto and de Paola, Maria. 2015. “Candidates’ Education and Turnout: Evidence from Italian Municipal Elections.” German Economic Review 18(1): 2250.
De Paolo, Maria, Scoppa, Vincenzo and De Benedetto, Marco Alberto. 2014. “The Impact of Gender Quotas on Electoral Participation: Evidence from Italian Municipalities.” European Journal of Political Economy 35: 141–57.
Federation of Canadian Municipalities. 2017. Guide à l'intention des candidates. https://fcm.ca/Documents/tools/Women/Municipal_Elections_in_Canada_a_Guide_for_Women_Candidates_FR.pdf (August 2, 2017).
Fox, Richard L. and Lawless, Jessica L.. 2004. “Entering the Arena? Gender and the Decision to Run for Office.” American Journal of Political Science 48(2): 264–80.
Frandsen, Annie Gaardsted. 2002. “Size and Electoral Participation in Local Elections.” Environment and Planning C: Politics and Space 20(6): 853–69.
Frederickson, H. George and Johnson, Gary A.. 2001. “The Adapted American City: A Study of Institutional Dynamics.” Urban Affairs Review 36(6): 872–84.
Fulton, Sarah A. 2012. “Running Backwards and in High Heels: The Gendered Quality Gap and Incumbent Electoral Success.” Political Research Quarterly 65(2): 303–14.
Fulton, Sarah A. 2014. “When Gender Matters: Macro-dynamics and Micro-mechanisms.” Political Behaviour 36(3): 605–30.
Gavan-Koop, Denisa and Smith, Patrick. 2008. “Gendering Local Governing: Canadian and Comparative Lessons—The Case of Metropolitan Vancouver.” Canadian Political Science Review 2(3): 152–71.
Jenkins, Shannon. 2007. “A Woman's Work Is Never Done? Fund-Raising Perception and Effort among Female State Legislative Candidates.” Political Research Quarterly 60(2): 230–9.
King, James D. 2002. “Single-Member Districts and the Representation of Women in American State Legislatures: The Effects of Electoral System Change.” State Politics & Policy Quarterly 2(2): 161–75.
Kirkland, Patricia A. and Coppock, Alexander. Forthcoming. “Candidate Choice Without Party Labels: New Insights from Conjoint Survey Experiments.” Political Behavior.
Kjaer, Ulrik. 2007. “The Decreasing Number of Candidates at Danish Local Elections: Local Democracy in Crisis?Local Government Studies 33(2): 195213.
Koop, Royce. 2016. “Institutional and Individual-Level Influences on Service Representation and Casework in Canadian Cities.” Urban Affairs Review 52(5): 808–31.
Koop, Royce and Kraemer, John. 2016. “Wards, At-Large Systems and the Focus of Representation in Canadian Cities.” Canadian Journal of Political Science 49(3): 433–48.
Lappie, John, and Marschall, Melissa. 2018. “Place and Participation in Local Elections.” Political Geography 64: 3342.
Lightbody, James. 2006. City Politics. Petersborough: Broadview Press.
Lucas, Jack. 2017. “Patterns of Urban Governance: A Sequence Analysis of Long-Term Institutional Change in Six Canadian Cities.” Journal of Urban Affairs 39(1): 6890.
Mévellec, Anne. 2018. Accountability and Local Politics: Contextual Barriers and Cognitive Varierty. In Accountability and Responsiveness at the Municipal Level: Wiews from Canada, ed. Breux, S. and Couture, J.. Montreal, McGill-Queen's University Press.
Mévellec, Anne and Tremblay, Manon. 2016. Genre et professionnalisation de la politique municipale. Montréal: Presses de l'Université du Québec.
Moore, Aaron A., McGregor, Michael and Stephenson, Laura B.. 2017. “Paying Attention and the Incymbency Effect: Voting Behavior in the 2014 Toronto Municipal Election.” International Political Science Review 38(1): 8598.
Oliver, J. Eric. 2012. Local Elections and the Politics of Small-Scale Government. Princeton: Princeton University Press.
Osborne, Martin J. and Slivinski, Al. 1996. “A Model of Political Competition with Citizen-Candidates.” The Quarterly Journal of Economics 111(1): 6596.
Pruysers, Scott and Blais, Julie. 2017. “Why Won't Lola Run? An Experiment Examining Stereotype Threat and Political Ambition.” Politics & Gender 13(2): 232252.
Rysavy, Dan and Bernard, Josef. 2013. “Size and Local Democracy: The Case of Czech Municipal Representatives.” Local Government Studies 39(6): 833–52.
Schneider, Monica C., Holman, Mirya R., Diekman, Amanda B. and McAndrew, Thomas. 2016. “Power, Conflict, and Community: How Gendered Views of Political Powers Influence Women's Political Ambition. Political Psychology 37(4): 515–31.
Siemiatycki, Myer. 2011. “Governing Immigrant City: Immigrant Political Representation in Toronto.” American Behavioral Scientist 55(9): 1214–34.
Smith, Adrienne R., Reingold, Beth and Owens, Michael Leo. 2012. “The Political Determinants of Women's Descriptive Representation in Cities.” Political Research Quarterly 65(2): 315–29.
Spicer, Zack, Michael McGregor, R. and Alcantara, Christopher. 2017. “Political Opportunity Structures and the Representation of Women and Visible Minorities in Municipal Elections.” Electoral Studies 48: 10–8.
Sproule-Jones, Mark. 2007. “Political Parties at the Local Level of Government.” Canadian Parties in Transition, ed. Gagnon, A.-G. and Tanguay, A. B.. Toronto: University of Toronto Press.
Tavares, Antonio F. and Carr, Jered B.. 2012. “So Close, Yet So Far Away? The Effects of City Size, Density and Growth on Local Civic Participation.” Journal of Urban Affairs 35(3): 283302.
Tolley, Erin. 2011. “Do Women “Do Better” in Municipal Politics? Electoral Representational across Three Levels of Government.” Canadian Journal of Political Science 44(3): 573–94.
Trimble, Linda and Arscott, Jane. 2003. Still Counting: Women in Politics Across Canada. Toronto: University of Toronto Press.
Trounstine, Jessica. 2008. Political Monopolies in American Cities: The Rise and Fall of Bosses and Reformers. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.
Trounstine, Jessica and Valdini, Melody E.. 2008. “The Context Matters: The Effects of Single-Member Versus At-Large Districts on City Council Diversity.” American Journal of Political Science 52(3): 554–69.
Voda, Petr, Svacinova, Petra, Smolkova, Andrea and Balik, Stanislav. 2017. “Local and More Local: Impact of Sex and Organization Type of Settlement Units on Candidacy.” Political Geography 59: 2435.
Volden, Craig, Wiseman, Alan E. and Wittmer, Dana E.. 2013. “When Are Women More Effective Lawmakers Than Men?American Journal of Political Science 57(2): 326–41.
Welch, Susan, and Karnig, Albert K.. 1978. “Correlates of Female Office Holding in City Politics.” Journal of Politics 41(2): 478–91.
Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

Canadian Journal of Political Science/Revue canadienne de science politique
  • ISSN: 0008-4239
  • EISSN: 1744-9324
  • URL: /core/journals/canadian-journal-of-political-science-revue-canadienne-de-science-politique
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *
×

Metrics

Altmetric attention score

Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 15
Total number of PDF views: 54 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 286 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between 11th September 2018 - 26th September 2018. This data will be updated every 24 hours.