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Research Talks in Canadian Politics: Scott Pruysers (Dalhousie University)

Thursday, March 5, 2020
2:30 PM – 4:00 PM
Dunning Hall
Room: 12
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"Local Party Organization and Representational Outcomes: Evidence from Canada" - Scott Pruysers (Dalhousie University) 

 It is well established that political parties play a key role as gatekeepers to elected office. This talk explores the local determinants of a diverse candidate pool. In particular, I consider the district or riding specific party factors that are related to women’s participation in the parties’ candidate nomination processes. That is, why do some nomination races in a party have no women contestants, while others have many? Using data from an original survey of party constituency association presidents, extensive nomination data from Elections Canada, and a novel experiment with more than 400 undergraduate students, I will demonstrate that a number of local factors are related to the presence of women contesting a party’s nomination. Local party associations with a woman serving as president, as well as associations that hold earlier and longer nominations, are significantly more likely to see a woman enter the contest. The results are important as they call attention to what parties do at the grassroots, as well as highlight practical solutions for parties seeking to have more diversity in their candidate pool.

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