Women's Political Empowerment: A New Global Index, 1900-2012

43 Pages Posted: 18 Dec 2015 Last revised: 24 May 2016

See all articles by Aksel Sundström

Aksel Sundström

University of Gothenburg

Pamela Paxton

University of Texas at Austin

Yi-ting Wang

National Cheng Kung University

Staffan I. Lindberg

Göteborg University - Varieties of Democracy Institute; Göteborg University - Department of Political Science

Date Written: December 1, 2015

Abstract

The V-Dem index on women’s political empowerment provides information about women’s civil liberties, civil society participation, and political participation globally. Spanning from 1900 to 2012, three dimensions of empowerment, and over 170 countries, it is among the most comprehensive measures of women’s empowerment available. This paper presents a conceptualization of women’s political empowerment and provides an overview of the construction of the index and operationalization of its three sub-dimensions: Women’s civil liberties, civil society participation, and political participation. Compared to other indices measuring women’s empowerment, such as the GDI, the GEM, the GII and the CIRI data on human rights, the V-Dem index allows more precise measurement and is superior in temporal scope and coverage of countries of the Global South. The paper demonstrates the benefits of this new index and its sub-dimensions through several empirical illustrations.

Suggested Citation

Sundström, Aksel and Paxton, Pamela and Wang, Yi-ting and Lindberg, Staffan I., Women's Political Empowerment: A New Global Index, 1900-2012 (December 1, 2015). V-Dem Working Paper 2015:19. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2704785 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2704785

Aksel Sundström (Contact Author)

University of Gothenburg ( email )

Viktoriagatan 30
Göteborg, 405 30
Sweden

Pamela Paxton

University of Texas at Austin ( email )

Austin, TX 78712
United States

Yi-ting Wang

National Cheng Kung University ( email )

No.1, University Road
Tainan
Taiwan

Staffan I. Lindberg

Göteborg University - Varieties of Democracy Institute ( email )

Sprängkullsgatan 19
Gothenburg, Gothenburg 405 30
Sweden

HOME PAGE: http://www.pol.gu.se/varianter-pa-demokrati--v-dem-/

Göteborg University - Department of Political Science ( email )

Box 711
Gothenburg, S-405 30
Sweden

HOME PAGE: http://www.pol.gu.se

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