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Women in National Legislatures

The legislative elections since the 1970s show that representation of women has increased in most Western democratic countries, reaching near parity in the Nordic countries. Before 1985, only parties in Sweden had adopted a quota to increase representation of women. Since the UN Beijing Plan of Action officially promoted “gender balanced decision making,” all countries except Finland, Italy, Japan, Luxembourg, and the United States have some sort of quota for candidate selection (Krook 2003).