Substantive representation of women and policy-vote trade-offs: does supporting women’s issue bills decrease a legislator’s chance of reelection?

Jaemin Shim*

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articlepeer-review

    2 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    The paper investigates how parliamentary efforts to represent the interests of female electorates influence the legislators’ re-election chances. Taiwan is chosen as the case study and, for empirical analysis, I utilise an original bill co-sponsorship dataset that consists of roughly 400,000 cosponsors for all bills submitted between 1992 and 2016. The findings, based on regression analyses, show that making more legislative effort on women’s issues–by prioritising them over other issues–results in electoral losses, and this negative effect is more pronounced among female legislators. The paper contributes to the gender politics literature by theorising and testing a hitherto underexplored relationship between two representational processes: how the substantive representation women by female legislators affects their descriptive representation. It also contributes to legislative and electoral studies by demonstrating that legislators’ policy-vote trade-offs are policy-sensitive and gendered, thus calling for a more nuanced approach to be taken in future research.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)533-553
    Number of pages21
    JournalThe Journal of Legislative Studies
    Volume28
    Issue number4
    Early online date5 Apr 2021
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2 Oct 2022

    Scopus Subject Areas

    • Political Science and International Relations
    • Law

    User-Defined Keywords

    • cosponsorship
    • Electoral connection
    • gender politics
    • substantive representation
    • Taiwan

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