Gender and municipal politics : problems, perspectives and possibilities

Pini, Barbara & McDonald, Paula K. (2011) Gender and municipal politics : problems, perspectives and possibilities. In Pini, Barbara & McDonald, Paula K. (Eds.) Women and Representation in Local Government : International Cases Studies. Routledge, Abingdon, Oxon, pp. 1-15.

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Scholars of local government have repeatedly lamented the lack of literature on the subject (e.g., Mowbray 1997; Pini, Previte, Haslam & McKenzie 2007). As Dollery, Marshall and Worthington (2003: 1) have commented, local government has often been the ‘poor cousin of its more exalted relatives in terms of the attention it attracts from the research community.’ The exalted relatives Dollery et al. (2003) refer to are national political environments, where women’s participation has elicited significant attention. However, the dearth of research on the specific subject of women’s representation in local government is rarely acknowledged (Neyland & Tucker 1996; Whip & Fletcher 1999). This edited book attempts to redress this situation. Each chapter applies an explicit gender analysis to their specific topic of focus, making ‘gender visible in social phenomenon; [and] asking if, how, and why social processes, standards, and opportunities differ systematically for women and men’ (Howard, Risman & Sprague 2003: 1). These analyses in the local government context are critical for understanding the extent and nature of balanced representation at all levels of government. Furthermore, some women start their elective careers serving on school boards, city or town councils or as mayors, before progressing to state and national legislative offices. Hence, the experiences of women in local government illustrate broader notions of democracy and may for some individual women, shape their opportunities further along the political pipeline.

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ID Code: 42281
Item Type: Book Chapter
Keywords: Gender, Municipal Politics, Local Government, International, Case Studies
ISBN: 9780415559348
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > STUDIES IN HUMAN SOCIETY (160000) > POLITICAL SCIENCE (160600) > Comparative Government and Politics (160603)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > QUT Business School
Current > Schools > School of Management
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2011 Routledge
Deposited On: 30 Jun 2011 01:20
Last Modified: 11 Dec 2014 16:41

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