Class Year


Document Type

Student Research Paper

Date of Creation

Spring 2018

Department 1

Political Science


This paper aims at summarizing the knowledge surrounding gender quotas – which are a quick gate-way to women’s political participation – and at assessing the efficacy of their different means of implementation. Through the cross-national study of Slovenia and Croatia (two countries similar on almost every political, social, and historical development except for women’s political representation) and in tandem with an extensive review of previous works in the literature, this paper sheds some light on the techniques the civil society and feminist/women’s movements could use to maximize their political impact and overall gender-quota effectiveness. Indeed, this paper finds that by appealing to the voters and the public during the election period, raising its awareness on key issues, such as gender-equality, informal barriers of entry for women, “the secret garden of nomination” and most importantly party male-dominated “traditionalism”, women’s movements will elicit maximum party response. By attacking directly the nexus of the parties’ survival, namely the votes, at an inopportune moment, namely during the elections, instead of using legislative and lobbying means, women’s movements will maximize their chances of overcoming the innate limitations of an inefficient gender-quota.


Written as a capstone paper for Political Science 404: Comparative Politics.