Why gender matters so much in policy making

Source: Oxford University Press

The 2018 U.S. elections changed many things, including, most notably, the gender composition of elected representatives in Washington and throughout the country. Both the Senate and House of Representatives are now nearly 25% female, a record high and more than double the percentage of 20 years ago. Nine women are currently serving as governors (tying the record), including five newly-elected this year, and countless more women were elected to state legislatures and other local offices. This change in gender composition is potentially a big deal, especially considering what many would call the “female-hostile” approach of the Trump administration and conservative Republicans. Even though the women elected to office are not necessarily your typical women, it is interesting to examine what research in economics suggests about what may happen in the future.

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