MSU Events Calendar
Gender and Local Government in Rural Communities in Poland: The Case of Village Representatives
(Conferences / Seminars / Lectures)
Ilona Matysiak will analyze the increasing participation of women in the local government in rural areas in Poland focusing on the traditional position of village representative. The function of a village representative is as liaison between the residents of a rural community and the local authorities at the superior levels. The share of women among village representatives in Poland has increased significantly in recent decades. In 1958, the percentage of female village representatives was only 0.8%, whereas now this percentage exceeds 35.0% on the national level and, in some regions, reaches almost 50.0%. It will be explored what mechanisms lie behind this change: What are its reasons? Do female village representatives differ from their male colleagues in their ideas and initiatives? Does it mean that rural women in Poland actually gained better access to power and local decision-making processes? The presentation is based on a recent qualitative empirical study conducted in rural areas of 10 municipalities located in different regions of Poland.