What Explains Low Female Political Representation? Evidence from Survey Experiments in Japan.

Author:

Kage, R. Rosebbluth, F. & Tanaka, S.

Editor:

Date:

2017

Region:

Theme:

Gender and Political Empowerment

Language:

English

Publisher:

Full Harvard Reference:

Kage, R. Rosebbluth, F. & Tanaka, S. (2017). What Explains Low Female Political Representation? Evidence from Survey Experiments in Japan. Politics & Gender, 15(2), pp.285-309.

Japan has one of the lowest female political representation of democratic countries. Based on surveys, the paper found that voters do not have negative attitudes towards female politicians, but rather that women are hesitant to run for office due to socially constructed family roles. In fact, voters’ welcome women to run but there was no option to reduce household work for women or to change the social expectations that exist. The paper predicts that things will not change until both women and men minimise their expectations surrounding women's roles and give men greater responsibility. Implicit bias is therefore reinforced with every female fighting against the odds until this is changed.