ECPR Joint Sessions
University of Warsaw, Warsaw
29 March - 2 April 2015

The Causes and Consequences of Male Over-Representation

Comparative Politics
Workshop Number
Workshop Director
Rainbow Murray
Queen Mary, University of London
Workshop Co-Director
Elin Bjarnegård
Uppsala Universitet

Nearly every legislature worldwide has a male majority, generating significant research on women’s political under-representation. While male over-representation might be explicitly acknowledged, it is usually problematised in terms of its impact on women, and is seldom the central focus of study. This workshop will open up new research agendas focusing explicitly on male over-representation, studying the causes and consequences of having male majorities (as opposed to female minorities) within legislatures. Shifting the focus from women to men invokes a number of new questions and research areas within the field of gender and politics. For example, how have men maintained their privileged position in politics? What is the role of male networks for accessing and wielding political power? Do clientelism, nepotism, sexism and other mechanisms giving men an unfair advantage all facilitate the selection of inferior men, resulting in lower quality representation for all? Are factors facilitating and constraining legislative careers different for men and women? How have men reacted to attempts to level the playing field, and to the presence of more women? Do men modify and tone down their behaviour in the presence of women, or do they feel even greater pressure to perform certain types of masculinity? Is the effect of having more women in parliament liberating or threatening for men? Do men feel empowered or constrained by the cultures of masculinity within male-dominated institutions? What are men’s interests, and how well are they met by male representatives? Are any men excluded from the representative process, and are some men’s interests overlooked by masculinised legislatures? Is male over-representation damaging for both men and women? Might male citizens benefit from a better gender balance in parliaments? The many questions raised when shifting the focus towards male over-representation indicate that this is fertile terrain for research, requiring much greater exploration.

Paper List

A Game-Theoretical Essay On Political Selections, Male Overrepresentation and Gender Bias View Paper Details
All the Women are Middle-Class and all the Working Class are Men View Paper Details
Behind the Men: The Consequences of Governance Informed by Patriarchal and Hegemonic Norms on Masculinity View Paper Details
Defining and Measuring Men's Interests View Paper Details
Diamonds are a Boy’s Best Friend: The Character, Cause and Effect of Male Overrepresentation View Paper Details
Exploring the Extent and Causes of Gendered Campaign Strategies View Paper Details
In the Company of Men: Gender and Legislative Activity in the European Parliament View Paper Details
Male Dominance and Gendered Informal Politics in Russia and Iceland View Paper Details
Male Dominance in the New Democracies of Central and Eastern Europe: Institutional Origins and Mechanisms of Reproduction View Paper Details
Male Over-Representation in Ghana View Paper Details
Men’s View of ‘Women’s Issues’: What Parliamentary Discourses on Family Policies say about Masculinity in Poland View Paper Details
More Guys than the Guys: Sexed Reproduction of Corporate Elites View Paper Details
Single-Axis Politics: Explaining the Persistent Political Overrepresentation of Men from Majority Racial and Ethnic Groups View Paper Details
The Causes and Consequences of Male Over-Representation – A Research Agenda View Paper Details
The Political Representation of Men: An Empirical Exploration of Men’s Interests View Paper Details
The Power of Masculine Privilege: Comparing Male Overrepresentation in the Australian Political and the Construction Sectors View Paper Details
Share this page

"History is past politics, and politics is past history" - E.A. Freeman

Back to top