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Making Quotas Work: The Effect of Gender Quota Laws on the Election of Women

Leslie Schwindt-Bayer

Gender quotas have proven to be the fastest and most popular means of increasing women’s political representation, but not all gender quotas are made equal. This article adds nuance to existing literature on the effectiveness of gender quotas, examining three key aspects of candidate quota laws that amplify or decrease quota effectiveness: the percentage of candidates required to be female, placement mandates, and enforcement mechanism. Considering the different types of quotas and the wide range of political contexts, the study provides essential insight into the impacts of each type of quota. Conclusions drawn from this work may be used to inform the design and implementation of future gender quotas.