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Title: Endogenous institutionalism and the puzzle of gender quotas : insights from Latin America
Author: Aberceb Carvalho Gatto, Maria Luiza
ISNI:       0000 0004 6421 7495
Awarding Body: University of Oxford
Current Institution: University of Oxford
Date of Award: 2016
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Given their potential to negatively impact men's goal of staying in office, can gender quotas be aligned with the preferences of male legislators who adopt the policy? In other words, does the rapid spread of gender quotas worldwide challenge notions of the rationality of legislators as career-driven individuals? These are the main questions that drive this thesis. To answer these questions, I develop a prospect theory-based framework that accounts for how electoral security and political ambition impact legislators' behaviour in influencing the strength of gender quota designs. I argue that, faced with growing pressures to adopt gender quotas, male parliamentarians engage in the risk-taking process of assenting with gender quotas, meanwhile seeking to minimize the potential costs of the policy to their future careers by actively weakening quota designs. To evaluate the plausibility of my theory, I employ a series of multi-method and multi-level analyses presented across five substantive chapters, each of which is respectively based on: 1) a cross-sectional analysis of Latin America countries; 2) an elite survey experiment with Brazilian state legislators; and, in-depth process tracing of the cases of gender quota adoption in 3) Costa Rica; 4) Brazil; and, 5) Chile. The work makes three main contributions. Firstly, although previously identified, the resistance of male legislators towards gender quotas had never been systematically analysed in a comparative manner; focusing on the behaviour of male incumbents is thus a relevant contribution. Secondly, although various authors have provided explanations for the origins of gender quota adoptions, no work had ever comparatively assessed sources of the variation in gender quota designs. Thus, I move the study of gender quotas beyond the binary choice of adoption. Thirdly, I show that the static assumptions of endogenous institutionalism need to be modified by the introduction of risk, which can only be achieved by integrating the insights of prospect theory.
Supervisor: Power, Tim ; Doyle, David Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Women politicians ; Sex discrimination in employment--Law and legislation ; Latin America--Politics and goverment--21st century