Introducing PaReSoGo, Dataset on Party Representation of Social Groups

  • Created by Olga Zelinska and Joshua K. Dubrow, Institute of Philosophy and Sociology, Polish Academy of Sciences
  • The data were funded by the National Science Centre, Poland Project “Political Voice and Economic Inequality across Nations and Time” (2016/23/B/HS6/03916)
  • The dataset on Party Representation of Social Groups (PaReSoGo) spans 25 Countries, 2002 – 2016
  • We are preparing a full description of PaReSoGo and for the data to be archived at the Polish Social Data Archive (ADS), anticipated for Spring 2021

Rationale for the Dataset

Parties and parliamentarians are charged with the responsibility to express and translate the voice of the masses in the legislature. A classic concern is the extent to which political parties who attained seats in parliament represent the masses; a smaller current in the literature is about the party representation of particular social groups. Social scientists have devised various ways to measure representation gaps across nations and time (see the MARPOR Party-Voter Dataset), but rarely do they account for particular social groups.

To address research questions about how well social groups are represented in parliament across nations and time, we created and are in the process of archiving the dataset, “Party Representation of Social Groups” (PaReSoGo) – that contains a simple and replicable measure of the party representation of social groups per country and year from high quality publicly available survey and administrative data.  This follows our presentation of the data idea in the conference, Building Multi-Source Databases for Comparative Analyses, in December 2019 in Warsaw, Poland.

About the Measure

Our country-year measure is based on the idea of issue congruence measures that match distributions. For survey data, we use the European Social Survey (ESS), 2002 – 2016, that contains items on sociodemographics, social attitudes, and retrospective vote choice, i.e. the party that the respondents said they voted for in the last general election. Following the research conducted by the grant on aggregation of survey data to the country-year level, discussed in the grant’s international conference, “Politics and Inequality across Nations and Time: Theoretical and Empirical Approaches,” held at IFiS PAN, December 12 – 14, 2018 in Warsaw, Poland, we aggregated the ESS items to the country and year level. We match the distribution of social groups’ party choices to a distribution of the percentage of parliamentarians in each party that were elected to parliament, as provided by ParlGov.

In our data, this match of distributions is made via the Dissimilarity Index (DI). To calculate the party representation with a DI we took a sum of absolute values of the share of seats a given party received in the elections and subtracted the share of ESS respondents who claim that they voted for this party, and divided by two. Here, the DI is a measure of distance in party representation between gender, age, education, intersectional, and attitudinal groups’ retrospective party vote choices and the distribution of parliamentarians in parties. In the PaReSoGo DI, the higher the value, the greater the distance between what social groups want and what parties there are in parliament. Table 1 illustrates the logic of calculations using Poland 2015 example for young adults.

            The PaReSoGo dataset contains 150 country years, which cover eight ESS rounds (2002-2016) and 95 national elections (1999-2016) across 25 countries. Table 2 illustrates the data basics. The minimum country-years that cover the same election is one; the maximum is three. For each country-year we calculated the DI for all ESS respondents and twelve social groups of gender, age, and education; intersectional groups based on gender and age; and attitudinal groups for and against immigration. Due to data availability, not all countries are available in all years, and not all groups are available in all country-years.

We are preparing a full description of PaReSoGo and for the data to be archived at the Polish Social Data Archive (ADS), anticipated for Spring 2021.

New Book: Gender Quotas in the Post-Communist World

Gender Quotas in the Post-Communist World: Voice of the Parliamentarians

Gender Quotas Book Cover 2020

Edited by Joshua K. Dubrow and Adrianna Zabrzewska

This is a sourcebook on gender quotas in nations that experienced multiple generations of Communist Party rule. It includes, for the first time in English, the complete historic parliamentary debate in Poland on the 2010 gender quota law.

This is a free book: Gender Quotas in the Post-Communist World: Voice of the Parliamentarians

This book was funded by the National Science Centre, Poland (2016/23/B/HS6/03916)

For more about the book, see here.

Politics and Inequality Conference: Program and Abstracts

We are pleased to present the final program and the titles and abstracts for the conference, “Politics and Inequality across Nations and Time: Theoretical and Empirical Approaches,” December 12 – 14, 2018, Institute of Philosophy and Sociology, Polish Academy of Sciences, 72 Nowy Swiat, Warsaw, Poland

Politics and Inequality Conference in Warsaw December 2018: PROGRAM

Politics and Inequality Conference in Warsaw December 2018: Abstracts

The conference also features a roundtable on “Aggregating Survey Data: Problems and Solutions.” Here is the description of the conference Roundtable on Aggregating Survey Data 

Political Voice and Economic Inequality across Nations and Time proposal from 2016

Funding for this event comes from the National Science Centre, Poland (“Political Voice and Economic Inequality across Nations and Time” 2016/23/B/HS6/03916), from the Institute of Philosophy and Sociology, Polish Academy of Sciences, and a conference grant from the Polish Academy of Sciences, with organizational support from IFiS PAN and CONSIRT – Cross-National Studies: Interdisciplinary Research and Training Program at The Ohio State University and PAN.

IFiS LogoPAN logo

 

Catherine Bolzendahl to Deliver a Keynote Speech at Politics and Inequality Conference in Warsaw

Catherine Bolzendahl ( @C_Bolzendahl ) of the University of California – Irvine will deliver a keynote speech at the conference, “Politics and Inequality across Nations and Time: Theoretical and Empirical Approaches,” at the Institute of Philosophy and Sociology, Polish Academy of Sciences, December 12 – 14, 2018 in Warsaw, Poland.

Professor Bolzendahl’s keynote title:

“Women’s Political Empowerment: A Path Toward Progress in Uncertain Times”

Abstract:

“Few social changes have been as dramatic and rapid as the increased political representation of women worldwide. Scholars and public figures rightfully tout these gains as remarkable evidence of greater gender equality, yet nowhere do women hold equal power to men in influencing and exercising political authority worldwide and efforts to increase women’s political agency are often actively and violently repressed. Addressing these issues means the comprehensive inclusion of women’s political empowerment as cornerstone of global research. I discuss how this is defined in my co-authored scholarship and using findings from my own current research I illustrate three axioms in this approach. First, women’s political empowerment is not a zero-sum game, and gender equality opens, rather than closes, the political domain to all members of society. Second, sex and gender are used simultaneously to create status inequalities that disadvantage women, thus, women’s political empowerment requires special attention given that women are the largest categorical group today experiencing long-term, ongoing barriers to political incorporation worldwide. Third, inequalities in political empowerment cut across multiple statuses and other sources of inequality. In sum, my work highlights the continued urgency to understand gender inequality through social and political research and data collection.”

catherine bolzendahlCatherine Bolzendahl is an Associate Professor in the Department of Sociology at the University of California-Irvine, USA. Professor Bolzendahl’s interests are in political change cross-nationally and over time, gender and politics, and of the meaning of family and gender in the political culture of the U.S. and in Western industrialized democracies. Professor Bolzendahl’s research has appeared in Social Forces, European Sociological Review, and British Journal of Sociology, among others. For information about her research, please visit: https://faculty.sites.uci.edu/catherinebolzendahl/

The conference is funded by Poland’s National Science Centre and a grant from the Polish Academy of Sciences, with organizational support from IFiS PAN, and CONSIRT – Cross-National Studies: Interdisciplinary Research and Training Program of The Ohio State University and PAN (CONSIRT.osu.edu).

The conference is free and open to the public. Click here for more information about the conference. 

 

Frederick Solt to Deliver a Keynote Speech at Politics and Inequality Conference in Warsaw

Frederick Solt ( @fredericksolt ) of the University of Iowa will deliver a keynote speech at the conference, “Politics and Inequality across Nations and Time: Theoretical and Empirical Approaches,” at the Institute of Philosophy and Sociology, Polish Academy of Sciences, December 12 – 14, 2018 in Warsaw, Poland.

Professor Solt’s keynote title:

“Economic Inequality, Demand for Redistribution, and Redistributive Outcomes: Building the Empirical Foundations for Dynamic Comparative Research.”

Abstract:

“Does rising income inequality in a country yield greater demand for more redistributive policy among its citizens? Does greater public demand prompt more redistribution? The answers to both of these questions are clearly not simply yes or no, but conditional on other circumstances. Assessing hypotheses regarding these circumstances will require comparable data–on inequality, on public opinion, and on redistribution–across space and time. This paper takes up that task. It first evaluates the author’s long-running project, the Standardized World Income Inequality Database (SWIID), as a source of data on income inequality and redistribution for this purpose. It then applies the author’s new approach, Dynamic Comparative Public Opinion (DCPO), to overcome the sparsity and incomparability of available survey data and provide comparable estimates of public opinion regarding redistribution for many countries over many years. Finally, it offers an appraisal of whether the combination of these two datasets can serve as a sound basis for further investigation of these two questions on the consequences of income inequality for politics and policy.”

frederick soltFrederick Solt is an Associate Professor in the Department of Political Science at the University of Iowa whose interests are in comparative political behavior and political economy from a cross-national perspective. Professor Solt created and maintains the Standardized World Income Inequality Database (SWIID). His research appeared in the American Journal of Political Science, Political Behavior, and Social Science Quarterly, among others. For a full list of his publications and more information about SWIID, please visit his website: https://fsolt.org/

The conference is funded by Poland’s National Science Centre and a grant from the Polish Academy of Sciences, with organizational support from IFiS PAN, and CONSIRT – Cross-National Studies: Interdisciplinary Research and Training Program of The Ohio State University and PAN (CONSIRT.osu.edu).

The conference is free and open to the public. Click here for more information about the conference.

Political Inequality and the 2008 U.S. Presidential Election

In my Social Stratification and Mobility course I teach at the University of Warsaw, I spent the first five weeks relating social stratification topics to the U.S. presidential election, focusing on the following topics: political inequality more generally, race, gender and social class (and intersections).  Most of the slides concern basics in social stratification with empirical evidence of the social, economic and political divide between the advantaged and the disadvantaged. Powerpoint lectures are here.

Exit polls are coming in.  How did disadvantaged groups vote?  The New York Times has an excellent interactive graph of exit polls.  You can easily compare “who voted for whom” of the 2008 election to every presidential election dating back to 1980.  More comprehensive exit polls, including questions about race, can be found at CNN.

Classic Readings in Class and Voting

Here is a website from a “Comparative Research on Social Class and Voting Behaviour: A Theory and Methods Course” organized by two top comparative sociologists — Ganzeboom and Nieuwbeerta — at the Oslo Summer School in Comparative Social Science Studies in July 2005.  It has PDF copies of classic class and voting articles and methodological articles related to social stratification.  Not to be missed.