Women's Legislative Representation and Gender Equality: What Works in the Absence of a 'Critical Mass'

26 Pages Posted: 19 Jul 2010 Last revised: 11 Oct 2010

Date Written: 2010

Abstract

Considerable improvements have been made since the last quarter of the twentieth century in the “descriptive” representation of women in legislatures both in the developed and developing countries around the world. Beginning in the 1990s, many democracies and several political parties have created laws to support and to some extent, influence women’s participation in the public policy process. Majority of the female-friendly policies have received notable endorsement from numerous international and regional bodies like the United Nations, the Southern African Development Corporation, the Council of Europe and the Inter-Parliamentary Union (Krook 2006). The perceived changes in women’s legislative representation have contributed in moving the idea of women’s participation in politics and in the policy process from being a marginal issue to predominance and continues to address the under representation of women and gender-related interests in politics and public policy (Celis 2008).

Suggested Citation

Tandoh-Offin, Patrick, Women's Legislative Representation and Gender Equality: What Works in the Absence of a 'Critical Mass' (2010). APSA 2010 Annual Meeting Paper, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1644024
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