Empowering Young Women? Gender and Youth Quotas in Tunisia

  • Jana Belschner
Part of the Gender and Politics book series (GAP)


In the context of an ongoing democratization process, Tunisia has adopted several electoral quotas for national elections: A gender parity quota in 2011 and a youth quota for citizens under 35 years of age in 2014. This chapter takes a closer look on the implementation and the intersectional effects of those tandem quotas. It focuses on the following questions: How are the quotas designed and implemented? How did they affect the shares of gender and age groups in the Tunisian parliament? How do they condition youth and women’s substantive and symbolic representation? The findings suggest that both quotas have the potential to alter political recruitment and representation in Tunisian politics. They led to an over-proportional share of young women MPs, as young female candidates could fulfil both quotas at a time. The comparative analysis of MPs’ socio-economic background, their activity in parliament, and their presence in leadership positions shows however that young women remain excluded from inner-party and parliamentarian power.


Representation Democratization Electoral quotas Intersectionality Age 



This work was supported by the Norwegian Research Council under grant number 250669/F10.


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© The Author(s) 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jana Belschner
    • 1
  1. 1.University of BergenBergenNorway

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