The role of women’s descriptive representation on same-gender and proximity voting among women

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  • 1 University of Ottawa, , Canada
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The article examines the relationship between the descriptive representation of women in political parties and its effect on same-gender and proximity voting among women. In particular, we examine whether women are more likely to support parties that have more women representatives or a woman party leader. We also consider whether women’s descriptive representation in parties may help women cast a vote that better corresponds to their preferences. To answer these questions, we make use of data from the Comparative Study of Electoral Systems. We analyse respondents’ vote choice in 55 elections across 14 countries. Overall, our results show that the presence of a woman party leader motivates women to support such a party and that it also encourages women to vote for a party closer to their ideological position. The results, however, do not provide strong evidence that the presence of more women representatives in parties also fosters same-gender and proximity voting among women.

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  • 1 University of Ottawa, , Canada

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