Skip to main content
×
×
Home

Ineffective and Counterproductive? The Impact of Gender Quotas in Open-List Proportional Representation Systems

  • Michael Jankowski (a1) and Kamil Marcinkiewicz (a2)
Abstract

Research on the impact of gender quotas in open-list proportional representation systems has described quotas as ineffective or even paradoxical. While some authors argue that gender quotas without a placement mandate will be essentially ineffective since most women will be nominated to unpromising positions, others suppose that women will be disadvantaged by gender quotas because the increase in the number of female candidates will decrease the average number of preferential votes cast for women. We reexamine the evidence for these claims by analyzing the case of Poland. We demonstrate that the gender quota introduced there in 2011 increased the number of women placed at promising ballot positions and had very little impact on the number of preferential votes cast for women. Additionally, using simulations, we show that the quota had a positive impact on the number of elected women.

Copyright
References
Hide All
Allik, Mirjam. 2015. “Who Stands in the Way of Women? Open vs. Closed Lists and Candidate Gender in Estonia.” East European Politics 31 (4): 429–51.
Baldez, Lisa. 2004. “Elected Bodies: The Gender Quota Law for Legislative Candidates in Mexico.” Legislative Studies Quarterly 29 (2): 231–58.
Besley, Timothy, Folke, Olle, Persson, Torsten, and Rickne, Johanna. 2017. “Gender Quotas and the Crisis of the Mediocre Man: Theory and Evidence from Sweden.” American Economic Review 107 (8): 2204–42.
Blom-Hansen, Jens, Elklit, Jørgen, Serritzlew, Søren, and Villadsen, Lousie. 2016. “Ballot Position and Election Results: Evidence from a Natural Experiment.” Electoral Studies 44: 172–83.
Campbell, Rosie, and Cowley, Philip. 2014. “What Voters Want: Reactions to Candidate Characteristics in a Survey Experiment.” Political Studies 62 (4): 745–65.
Carnes, Nicholas, and Lupu, Noam. 2016. “Do Voters Dislike Working-Class Candidates? Voter Biases and the Descriptive Underrepresentation of the Working Class.” American Political Science Review 110 (4): 832–44.
Dahlerup, Drude. 2007. “Electoral Gender Quotas: Between Equality of Opportunity and Equality of Result.” Representation 43 (2): 7392.
Dubrow, Johsua Kjerulf. 2011. “The Importance of Party Ideology: Explaining Parliamentarian Support for Political Party Gender Quotas in Eastern Europe.” Party Politics 17 (5): 561–79.
EAST PaC. 2015. “East European Parliamentarian and Candidate Data 1985–2014.” Funded by Poland's National Science Centre (decision number 2012/05/E/HS6/03556). https://electoralcontrol.org/east-pac-data/ (accessed November 8, 2017).
Erzeel, Silvia, and Celis, Karen. 2016. “Political Parties, Ideology and the Substantive Representation of Women.” Party Politics 22 (5): 576–86.
Faas, Thorsten, and Schoen, Harald. 2006. “The Importance of Being First: Effects of Candidates’ List Positions in the 2003 Bavarian State Election.” Electoral Studies 25 (1): 91102.
Folke, Olle, and Rickne, Johanna. 2016. “The Glass Ceiling in Politics.” Comparative Political Studies 49 (5): 567–99.
Fortin-Rittberger, Jessica, and Eder, Christina. 2013. “Towards a Gender-Equal Bundestag? The Impact of Electoral Rules on Women's Representation.” West European Politics 36 (5): 969–85.
Fortin-Rittberger, Jessica, and Rittberger, Berthold. 2014. “Do Electoral Rules Matter? Explaining National Differences in Women's Representation in the European Parliament.” European Union Politics 15 (4): 496520.
Fréchette, Guillaume R., Maniquet, Francois, and Morelli, Massimo. 2008. “Incumbents’ Interests and Gender Quotas.” American Journal of Political Science 52 (4): 891909.
Giger, Nathalie, Holli, Anne Maria, Lefkofridi, Zoe, and Wass, Hanna. 2014. “The Gender Gap in Same-Gender Voting: The Role of Context.” Electoral Studies 35: 303–14.
Golder, Sona N., Stephenson, Laura B., Van der Straeten, Karine, Blais, André, Bol, Damien, Harfst, Philipp, and Laslier, Jean-François. 2017. “Votes for Women: Electoral Systems and Support for Female Candidates.” Politics & Gender 13 (1): 107–31.
Górecki, Maciej A., and Kukołowicz, Paula. 2014. “Gender Quotas, Candidate Background and the Election of Women: A Paradox of Gender Quotas in Open-List Proportional Representation Systems.” Electoral Studies 36: 6580.
Gwiazda, Anna. 2015. “Women's Representation and Gender Quotas: The Case of the Polish Parliament.” Democratization 22 (4): 679–97.
Gwiazda, Anna. 2016. Democracy in Poland: Representation, Participation, Competition and Accountability since 1989. London: Routledge.
Holli, Anne Maria, and Wass, Hanna. 2010. “Gender-Based Voting in the Parliamentary Elections of 2007 in Finland.” European Journal of Political Research 49 (5): 598630.
Jankowski, Michael. 2016. “Voting for Locals: Voters’ Information Processing Strategies in Open-List PR Systems.” Electoral Studies 43 (3): 7284.
Jankowski, Michael, and Marcinkiewicz, Kamil. 2016. “Are Populist Parties Fostering Women's Political Representation in Poland? A Comment on Kostadinova and Mikulska.” Party Politics Published online June 6. https://doi.org/10.1177/1354068816650995.
Jones, Mark P. 1998. “Gender Quotas, Electoral Laws, and the Election of Women: Lessons from the Argentine Provinces.” Comparative Political Studies 31 (1): 321.
Jones, Mark P. 2009. “Gender Quotas, Electoral Laws, and the Election of Women: Evidence from the Latin American Vanguard.” Comparative Political Studies 42 (1): 5681.
Kelley, Jonathan, and McAllister, Ian. 1984. “Ballot Paper Cues and the Vote in Australia and Britain: Alphabetic Voting, Sex, and Title.” Public Opinion Quarterly 48 (2): 452–66.
Kostadinova, Tatiana, and Mikulska, Anna. 2015. “The Puzzling Success of Populist Parties in Promoting Women's Political Representation.” Party Politics 23 (4): 400412.
Krook, Mona Lena. 2009. Quotas for Women in Politics: Gender and Candidate Selection Reform Worldwide. New York: Oxford University Press.
Krook, Mona Lena, Lovenduski, Joni, and Squires, Judith. 2009. “Gender Quotas and Models of Political Citizenship.” British Journal of Political Science 39 (4): 781803.
Krook, Mona Lena, and Norris, Pippa. 2014. “Beyond Quotas: Strategies to Promote Gender Equality in Elected Office.” Political Studies 62 (1): 220.
Kukołowicz, Paula. 2013. “Do Voters Read Gender? Stereotypes as Voting Cues in Electoral Settings.” Polish Sociological Review 182 (2): 223–38.
Kunovich, Sheri. 2003. “The Representation of Polish and Czech Women in National Politics: Predicting Electoral List Position.” Comparative Politics 35 (3): 273–91.
Kunovich, Sheri. 2012. “Unexpected Winners: The Significance of an Open-List System on Women's Representation in Poland.” Politics & Gender 8 (2): 153–77.
Luhiste, Maarja. 2015. “Party Gatekeepers’ Support for Viable Female Candidacy in PR-List Systems.” Politics & Gender 11 (1): 89116.
Marcinkiewicz, Kamil. 2014. “Electoral Contexts That Assist Voter Coordination: Ballot Position Effects in Poland.” Electoral Studies 33: 322–34.
Marcinkiewicz, Kamil, and Stegmaier, Mary. 2015. “Ballot Position Effects under Compulsory and Optional Preferential-List PR Electoral Systems.” Political Behavior 37 (2): 465–86.
Marcinkiewicz, Kamil, and Stegmaier, Mary. 2016. “The Parliamentary Election in Poland, October 2015.” Electoral Studies 41: 221–24.
Marien, Sofie, Schouteden, Anke, and Wauters, Bram. 2016. “Voting for Women in Belgium's Flexible List System.” Politics & Gender 13 (2): 305–35.
Matland, Richard E. 1994. “Putting Scandinavian Equality to the Test: An Experimental Evaluation of Gender Stereotyping of Political Candidates in a Sample of Norwegian Voters.” British Journal of Political Science 24 (2): 273–92.
Matland, Richard E. 2004. “The Norwegian Experience of Gender Quotas.” Presented at the International Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance (IDEA)/CEE Network for Gender Issues Conference.
McElroy, Gail, and Marsh, Michael. 2010. “Candidate Gender and Voter Choice: Analysis from a Multimember Preferential Voting System.” Political Research Quarterly 63 (4): 822–33.
Millard, Frances. 2014. “Not Much Happened: The Impact of Gender Quotas in Poland.” Communist and Post-Communist Studies 47 (1): 111.
Millard, Frances, Popescu, Marina, and Tóka, Gabor. 2013. “The Impact of Preference Voting Systems on Women's Representation and the Legitimation of Quota-Based Nomination Results.” Presented at the Joint Sessions of Workshops of the European Consortium for Political Research in Mainz, Germany, March 11–16.
Milyo, Jeffrey, and Schosberg, Samantha. 2000. “Gender Bias and Selection Bias in House Elections.” Public Choice 105 (1–2): 4159.
Put, Gert-Jan, and Maddens, Bart. 2013. “The Selection of Candidates for Eligible Positions on PR Lists: The Belgian/Flemish Federal Elections 1999–2010.” Journal of Elections, Public Opinion & Parties 23 (1): 4965.
Quota Project. 2016. “Global Database of Quotas for Women.” http://www.quotaproject.org/.
Roberts, Andrew, Seawright, Jason, and Cyr, Jennifer. 2013. “Do Electoral Laws Affect Women's Representation?Comparative Political Studies 46 (12): 1555–81.
Sanbonmatsu, Kira. 2002. “Gender Stereotypes and Vote Choice.” American Journal of Political Science 46 (1): 2034.
Schmidt, Gregory D. 2009. “The Election of Women in List PR Systems: Testing the Conventional Wisdom.” Electoral Studies 28 (2): 190203.
Schwindt-Bayer, Leslie A., Malecki, Michael, and Crisp, Brian F.. 2010. “Candidate Gender and Electoral Success in Single Transferable Vote Systems.” British Journal of Political Science 40 (3): 693709.
Spierings, Niels, and Jacobs, Kristof. 2014. “Getting Personal? The Impact of Social Media on Preferential Voting.” Political Behavior 36 (1): 215–34.
Stegmaier, Mary, Tosun, Jale, and Vlachova, Klara. 2014. “Women's Parliamentary Representation in the Czech Republic: Does Preference Voting Matter.” East European Politics and Societies 28 (1): 187204.
Thames, Frank C., and Williams, Margaret S.. 2010. “Incentives for Personal Votes and Women's Representation in Legislatures.” Comparative Political Studies 43 (12): 15751600.
Thames, Frank C., and Williams, Margaret S.. 2013. Contagious Representation: Women's Political Representation in Democracies Around the World. New York: New York University Press.
Valdini, Melody Ellis. 2012. “A Deterrent to Diversity: The Conditional Effect of Electoral Rules on the Nomination of Women Candidates.” Electoral Studies 31 (4): 740–49.
Van Erkel, Patrick F. A., and Thijssen, Peter. 2016. “The First One Wins: Distilling the Primacy Effect.” Electoral Studies 44: 245–54.
Vengroff, Richard, Nyiria, Zsolt, and Fugiero, Melissa. 2003. “Electoral System and Gender Representation in Sub-National Legislatures: Is There a National-Sub-National Gender Gap?Political Research Quarterly 56 (2): 163–73.
Verge, Tània. 2015. “The Gender Regime of Political Parties: Feedback Effects between ‘Supply’ and ‘Demand.’” Politics & Gender 11 (4): 754–59.
Wauters, Bram, Maddens, Bart, and Put, Gert-Jan. 2014. “It Takes Time: The Long-Term Effects of Gender Quota.” Representation 50 (2): 143–59.
Wauters, Bram, Weekers, Karolien, and Maddens, Bart. 2010. “Explaining the Number of Preferential Votes for Women in an Open-List PR System: An Investigation of the 2003 Federal Elections in Flanders (Belgium).” Acta Politica 45 (4): 468–90.
Wylie, Kristin, and Santos, Pedro dos. 2016. “A Law on Paper Only: Electoral Rules, Parties, and the Persistent Underrepresentation of Women in Brazilian Legislatures.” Politics & Gender 12 (3): 415–42.
Recommend this journal

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

Politics & Gender
  • ISSN: 1743-923X
  • EISSN: 1743-9248
  • URL: /core/journals/politics-and-gender
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *
×

Keywords

Type Description Title
WORD
Supplementary materials

Jankowski and Marcinkiewicz supplementary material 1
Appendix

 Word (65 KB)
65 KB

Metrics

Altmetric attention score

Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 5
Total number of PDF views: 79 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 505 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between 28th December 2017 - 15th August 2018. This data will be updated every 24 hours.