Why are there fewer women than men in politics?

All over the world, there are far fewer women than men in political positions, and the disproportion is particularly visible in the case of senior positions. In Poland, in the initial years of transition, the participation of women in politics was very limited, and for many years Poland has performed quite poorly in the ranking of European countries based on general equality indicators, and in particular the position of women in politics. In 2011, the Polish government took steps to reduce the disproportion in women’s political participation by introducing proportional quotas on electoral lists. However, despite the increase in the proportion of female candidates on these lists and despite the increase in the number of female deputies in the Sejm, the number of women in Parliament still remains significantly lower than the number of men. In part, this is probably due to the conservative views or even prejudices of voters themselves. However, a significant role is also played by prejudices within political parties, whose leaders do not place women in top positions on electoral lists. It seems, therefore, that the introduction of gender quotas alone is not enough to overcome the barriers faced by women in the electoral process and further, more comprehensive changes in the law may be necessary.

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