Theme: Government & Parliament | Content Type: Journal article

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Addressing Barriers to Women's Representation in Party Candidate Selections

Sofía Collignon

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An analysis of Conservative and Labour Party candidate selections reveals persistent gender disparities, with the Conservative Party nominating a significantly higher proportion of men. While various factors, such as local connections and harassment, abuse and intimidation (HAI) are cited as explanations, they fail to address systemic issues within the Conservative Party's recruitment processes and organisational culture. This article argues that the focus should shift from individual women to party structures and practices that perpetuate gender inequality. Drawing on previous research and empirical evidence, it calls for institutional reforms including the implementation of quotas and greater transparency in candidate selection. Finally, it calls for a gender-sensitive audit of party culture to address underlying barriers to women's participation in politics.

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