Objective: Palmer and Simon's (2008) “women-friendly” district index has proven a useful theoretical and empirical construct for researchers studying congressional elections. In one parsimonious measure, the authors capture 12 factors predicting women's election to the House of Representatives. The construct's utility in other political contexts, however, has not yet been tested. Methods: We test the women-friendliness index using a new data set on state legislative elections. Results: We find that the women-friendly district index is useful for predicting the election of women in state legislatures. The index's predictive power is robust to institutional variations and surpasses other contextual indicators, such as political culture. Conclusions: Our analysis suggests that “women friendliness” is a useful empirical concept with application in multiple political contexts.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Social Sciences(all)