Inequality in Congruence: Gender Gap and Electoral Rules

Original scientific paper

Daniela Širinić ; Faculty of

Fulltext: english, pdf (356 KB) pages 124-141 cite

A number of studies on political representation focus on the comparative assessments of citizen ideological congruence. But this literature has largely overlooked an important topic: the representation of social groups. While present studies of congruence investigate whether some countries perform better than others in terms of the levels of median citizen congruence, they cannot say much about the extent to which political elites give adequate concern to every group of citizens in the representative process. In this paper I introduce the concept and measure of inequality in congruence and demonstrate its properties by comparing gender groups. I also ask whether virtues of proportional electoral arrangements endure when we consider group differences in ideological representation. Empirical tests that were conducted on data from 88 legislative elections in 33 countries strongly suggest that gender inequality in congruence is in fact considerably smaller in countries with majoritarian arrangements.

Inequality in Congruence; Gender Gap; Electoral Rules; Representation; Comparative Politics