Department of Political Studies

Department of Political Studies
Department of Political Studies

Elizabeth McCallion

Elizabeth McCallionDoctoral Candidate
MA Political Studies (Queen's); BA, Honours (Western)

Department of Political Studies
Mackintosh-Corry Hall, Room C306

Supervisors: E. Goodyear-Grant & Kyle Hanniman



Research Interests

Canadian politics & government, gender & politics, women legislators, institutionalism, representation, federalism, regionalism

Brief Biography

Elizabeth is a PhD candidate in the Department of Political Studies at Queen’s University and a Doctoral Research Fellow at the Institute of Intergovernmental Relations.

She studies Canadian politics and gender & politics, with a focus on representation. She is interested in how conceptions of representation can play out within formal political institutions, federal structures and processes, and through public dialogue. She is particularly concerned with whether and how women politicians act in the interests of women in society (known as substantive representation). Her Master’s project considered a non-constitutional reform that would ensure gender parity in the Canadian Senate. Her doctoral dissertation uses the Canadian Senate to explore how institutional features might shape the representation of women’s interests in parliament. In brief, partisanship and electoral pressures have been shown to stunt feminist initiatives in democratic legislatures around the world. The political conditions in the Canadian Senate are very different from those in democratically elected houses; senators are not subject to electoral and constituency pressures and there is a relatively low level of partisanship in the upper house (which is supposedly decreasing further with the recent reforms of 2014 and 2015). First, her project explores whether changes in the Senate’s institutional structure have facilitated changes in senators’ policy priorities and actions as they relate to women’s issues. She asks whether decreasing partisanship in the Senate has caused an increase in senators’ feminist initiatives. Second, her project aims to establish whether women’s issues receive different levels of attention or support from senators depending on the politicians’ sex and partisanship. Elizabeth hypothesizes that the Senate might provide an avenue for women's representation because of its absence of electoral pressures and its reduced partisanship.


Ontario Graduate Scholarship (2019-2020)
J.H. Stewart Reid Memorial Fellowship (CAUT) (2019-2020)
Ontario Graduate Scholarship (2018-2019)
Duncan and Urlla Carmichael Graduate Fellowship (2017-2018)
Queen’s Graduate Award (2016-2017)
University of Western Ontario Gold Medal (Political Science Honours Major) (2016)


POLS 110 - Introduction to Politics (2019-2020, Head TA)
POLS 212 - Canadian Politics (2018, TA)
POLS 280 - Introduction to Women, Gender, and Politics (2018, TA)
POLS 212 - Canadian Politics (2018, TA)
POLS 211 - Canadian Government (2017, TA)
POLS 110 - Introduction to Politics (2016-2017, TA)