English title: Towards a modern gender gap in Europe?: A comparative analysis of voting behavior in 12 countries

Author(s): Nathalie Giger -

Language: English

Type: Journal article

Year: 2009


This article examines electoral gender differences in Western Europe. It describes the electoral gender gap in a longitudinal cross-national design (1974–2000, 12 countries) with EuroBarometer data. The analysis shows that gender differences in voting in Europe follow a similar movement to what has been described for the USA. Women tended to vote more for conservative parties in the 1970s, while in the new millennium they have given higher support to left parties. The speed of this development differs cross-nationally and not all countries reached the state of a modern gender gap (where women lean left). At the national level the driving force for the emergence of a modern gender gap is mainly increased levels of female labor participation. At the individual level structural variables explain traditional gender differences in voting, but fail to account for the gender gap in recent years.

Volume: 46

Issue: 3

From page no: 474

To page no: 492

Refereed: Yes

DOI: 10.1016/J.SOSCIJ.2009.03.002

Journal: The Social Science Journal

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