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Chapter 2: Obstacles to Women’s Participation in Parliament

Nadezhda Shvedova

Women around the world at every socio-political level find themselves under-represented in parliament and far removed from decision-making levels. The factors that hamper or facilitate women’s political participation vary with the level of socio-economic development, geography, culture, and type of political system. This chapter outlines a path for increasing women’s parliamentary representation and effectiveness by identifying the common problems that women face, the strategies to overcome these obstacles, and what women can do once they enter parliament.