Women and Regional Politics: Political Determinants of Women’s Descriptive Representation in the Czech and Slovak Regional Elections of 2000–2017
(Ženy a regionálna politika: Politické determinanty deskriptívnej reprezentácie žien v krajských voľbách v Českej republike a na Slovensku v rokoch 2000–2017)
Politické vedy, Volume 21, Number 4/2018, pages 49-73
Recommended form for quotation of the article / Odporúčaná forma citácie článku:
MAŠKARINEC, P. 2018. Women and Regional Politics: Political Determinants of Women’s Descriptive Representation in the Czech and Slovak Regional Elections of 2000–2017. In Politické vedy. [online]. Vol. 21, No. 4, 2018. ISSN 1335 – 2741, pp. 49‑73. Available at: http://doi.org/10.24040/politickevedy.2018.21.4.49-73
Although there is an extensive comparative research focusing on the influence of various factors contributing to the increase of female representation at the national level, relatively little space is devoted to a similar research at (sub)state levels of governance. Hence, the main objective of this article is to analyse the determinants of women’s descriptive representation in Czech and Slovak regional elections. We show that women’s representation at the regional level is lower not only in comparison with the national but especially with the local level. Our results confirm that women are significantly advantaged in the regions where women held a much higher representation in the previous electoral term. However, other factors show only little positive (expected) influence on women’s representation in the Czech Republic (district magnitude), while we find negative influence of economic development (unexpected) and Catholicism (expected). On the contrary, in Slovakia, most factors influence women’s representation in the expected way. We find higher women’s representation in the regions characterized by higher economic development, higher district magnitudes, higher difference in salaries between men and women and a lower share of Catholics and Hungarians. Furthermore, electoral system proves to be a strong factor as a proportional system, together with higher magnitudes, strongly increases women’s representation. Generally, while the results from the Czech Republic indicate that women’s representation is influenced rather by institutional variables, together with greater openness for women based on previous experience, in Slovakia the relation among various factors is much more complex, influenced by all types of variables.
Key words: Czech Republic, Slovakia, regional politics, regional elections, women and politics, women’s representation