The gendered political ambition cycle in mixed member electoral systems

Hilde Coffe, Louise Davidson-Schmich

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This article introduces a theoretical model that shows how four mechanisms (work–life balance, psychological, gatekeeper bias and diversity mechanisms) explain why pursuing a nomination as list Members of Parliament is the more attractive option for women in mixed-member electoral systems. It also demonstrates how women’s resulting greater likelihood of being list Members of Parliament creates what we call a gendered cycle, further reducing women’s interest in the single-member district tier. To empirically test our model, we present quantitative data for the case of New Zealand and Germany, as well as qualitative interview data collected from members of German parties’ women’s auxiliary organisations.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)79-99
JournalEuropean Journal of Politics and Gender
Issue number1
Early online date18 Nov 2019
Publication statusPublished - 29 Feb 2020


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