Women and power: Unpopular, unwilling, or held back?

Pablo Casas Arce, Albert Saiz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

60 Scopus citations


We use Spain’s Equality Law to test for the existence of agency problems between party leaders and their constituents. The law mandates a 40 percent female quota on electoral lists in towns with populations above 5,000. Using pre- and postquota data by party and municipality, we implement a triple-difference design. We find that female quotas resulted in slightly better electoral results for the parties that weremost affected by the quota. Our evidence shows that party leaders were not maximizing electoral results prior to the quota, suggesting the existence of agency problems that hinder female representation in political institutions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)641-669
Number of pages29
JournalJournal of Political Economy
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jun 1 2015

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Economics and Econometrics


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