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date: 14 December 2018

Abstract and Keywords

Comparative research highlights electoral systems as an important variable explaining cross-national variations in women’s political representation worldwide. This chapter summarizes key patterns in women’s representation globally. It maps existing research on gender and electoral systems, focusing on the role of electoral formulas, district and party magnitude, and ballot structure in shaping women’s opportunities to be elected. It then identifies three areas within the gender literature that have foregrounded elements of electoral systems to generate new insights into central dynamics of political life. The chapter concludes with a discussion of emerging areas of research related to gender, electoral systems, and political representation.

Keywords: gender, women, electoral systems, political representation, gender quotas

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