Category Archives: Gender and Politics series

Rwanda: Liberation by numbers?

SJCK Profile pic

Our co-editor, SJ Cooper-Knock takes a look at Rwanda, which is often praised for leading the way on women’s representation in parliament. What do the country’s impressive statistics tell us about the life choices and life chances of women in politics, and beyond? This thought piece was penned as part of series on parliamentary politics for the […]

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Do Kenyan women get a fair deal?

Editor: Nic Cheeseman

Kenya is a mass of contradictions when it comes to gender, argues our co-editor Nic Cheeseman. So how well are women faring in terms of education, political participation, health, and economic opportunity? And what can be done to ensure that their prospects improve in coming years? 

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A positive feedback loop: men’s historical dominance of Zambian politics

Alice Evans

In this post, Alice Evans argues that women’s historical paucity in Zambian politics was largely due to gender divisions of labour. The colonial model of male breadwinner and female housewife fostered assumptions that men were more competent in socially valued domains, thus more suited to leadership. Alice is a Fellow in Human Geography at the […]

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Women, ethnicity and power in Africa


In many African countries, power is concentrated in the hands of the executive. Therefore, Leonardo Arriola and Martha Johnson  argue, we need to better understand how appointments to the executive are made, and what barriers exist for women who are seeking such appointments. In this blog, they suggest that in countries with a large number […]

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Why the quality of democracy matters for women’s rights in democratising states

Denise Walsh

This week, we build on our successful gender and politics series by sharing two blogs that provide additional angles on key issues in the field. We start with an article by Denise Walsh, which uses the cases of Chile and South Africa to highlight the ground that women can gain by organising early and gaining […]

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Of democratic inclusion and dividends: women cabinet ministers and women’s interests in sub-Saharan Africa


Continuing our gender and politics series, Chiedo Nwankwor shifts our attention from women in legislative bodies, to women in the cabinet. There has been some impressive progress in some countries in increasing the number of women cabinet ministers, but how do these women act once they get into their new posts? Chiedo shares her research […]

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Women organising for gender equality in Sierra Leonean politics


Continuing our series on gender and politics, Dr Hussainatu Abdullah reviews the progress of women fighting for gender equality in Sierra Leone since the end of the war. Hussainatu is a sociologist and an independent scholar with extensive research and consultancy experience in West Africa.    

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Sustainable representation of women through gender quotas: A decade’s experience in Morocco


In this article, Hanane Darhour tells us about her recent research into the sustainable representation of women in Morocco with Professor Drude Dahlerup, published in Women’s Studies International Forum.  Hanane is a Professor of English Studies in Ibn Zohr University.  

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The effects of political institutions on women’s representation in national politics

Jennifer Rosen

In this blog, Jennifer Rosen argues that if we want to increase the presence of women in parliaments we need to move away from a ‘one size fits all’ approach. Her research shows that Proportional Representation is more effective as a means of increasing the number of women in the legislatures of developed countries, whereas […]

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Women changing policy outcomes: learning from pro-women legislation in the Ugandan Parliament

Vibeke Wang

In this blog, Dr Vibeke Wang asks why the Eighth Parliament in Uganda, from 2006-2011, produced so much pro-women legislation. The answer, she argues, is more than just a matter of numbers: the cross-party women’s caucus has proved invaluable in helping to further a pro-women agenda. Vibeke is a member of the Department of Comparative […]

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