Faculté des lettres et sciences humaines

Ethnic Group Representation in a Cross-National Comparison

Ruedin, Didier

In: The Journal of Legislative Studies, 2009, vol. 15, no. 4, p. 335-354

This paper compares the levels of ethnic group representation in parliament in 95 democracies. The analyses are comparative in nature, breaking with the literature where single country studies are the norm. Considering both electoral and cultural variables, the results cast doubt on whether the role of the electoral system in shaping political representation is dominant. In contrast to what much... More

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    Summary
    This paper compares the levels of ethnic group representation in parliament in 95 democracies. The analyses are comparative in nature, breaking with the literature where single country studies are the norm. Considering both electoral and cultural variables, the results cast doubt on whether the role of the electoral system in shaping political representation is dominant. In contrast to what much of the literature suggests, once controlling for the ethnic make-up of society and cultural attitudes, electoral aspects seem of little significance. Levels of ethnic group representation are best explained with cultural variables, in particular liberal attitudes towards marginalised groups in society.