Presentation on theme: "Electoral Systems Women and Elections"— Presentation transcript:
1 Electoral Systems Women and Elections See the Trainer’s Guide for overall guidance on using this presentation. The Trainer’s Guide serves as a companion resource and outlines the objectives of the session and materials needed as well as provides additional guidance on conducting the training session. Please note that the Guide includes complete instructions on how to facilitate some of the exercises referenced in this PowerPoint presentation and additional information on the content of certain slides.Please adapt the PowerPoint presentation, exercises, examples and handouts in advance of your workshop. They have been created for a global audience and need to be adapted to better suit the local context, the background of your participants and their level of experience. Terms, images and examples from the participants’ country or region should be used as much as possible so that they are relevant and contextually appropriate. This presentation draws heavily from an NDI presentation on electoral systems. This presentation and guide were developed by Susan Kemp. NDI would also like to acknowledge those who contributed including Amy Hamelin, Caroline Hubbard, Susan Markham, Allison Muehlenbeck, Crystal Rosario and Rebecca Turkington.The National Democratic Institute
2 INTRODUCTIONS/ GROUND RULES Introductions Ground rules Ice breaker exerciseSLIDE CONTENT: To begin the session, introduce yourself and other staff, trainers and resource persons. Provide the participants an opportunity to introduce themselves and establish ground rules for the training.TRAINER NOTE: It will be important to establish a rapport among participants. If this is the first presentation of a training workshop, be sure to build in time for participants to get to know one another and establish ground rules for their interaction and participation. Guidance on ice breakers and ground rules can be found in the “Training and Facilitation” folder.You might also establish ground rules by asking participants to give suggestions and agreeing as a group. You can write the rules on a flip chart and hang it on the wall for reference during the training session.Photo: NDI
3 ELECTORAL SYSTEMS OBJECTIVES To understand the different types of electoral systemsTo increase awareness of the potential advantages and disadvantages to these systems from a gender perspectiveSLIDE CONTENT: This presentation covers gender and electoral systems. Specifically, the purpose is:To understand the different types of electoral systems.To increase awareness of the potential advantages/disadvantages to these systems from a gender perspective.TRAINER NOTE: Provide an overview of the session’s objectives so that participants understand its purpose and have realistic expectations about what to expect.You may also wish to ask participants what expectations they have for the session. What do they hope to get out of it? You can then relate their expectations to the objectives and suggest how unrelated expectations might be met in other ways.
4 ELECTORAL SYSTEMS TOPICS Proportional RepresentationMajoritarianMixedSLIDE CONTENT: There are different types of electoral systems which have an impact on the way elections are conducted and can have an impact on women’s political participation. This presentation will discuss proportional representation, majoritarian and mixed systems, analyzing each from a gender perspective.TRAINER NOTE: Once the objectives have been shared, give a brief overview of the topics to be covered. We want to give participants a sense of where we are heading in the presentation, so summarize the main concepts that will be addressed. You can also use this time to define any key terms that will be used throughout the training, to get a sense of participant levels and ensure a common understanding among the group. If there are many terms, you may want to create an additional slide (see next). Photo: Kathy Gest
5 KEY TERMS Electoral System Proportional Representation Majoritarian SystemOpen/Closed Party ListGender QuotaSLIDE CONTENT: Here you will give a brief overview of the terms commonly used when discussing this topic.Electoral System: the system that takes votes cast and translates them into election results – seats won by parties and candidates (International IDEA).Proportional Representation: an electoral system designed to represent in a legislative body each political group or party in proportion to its actual voting strength in the electorate (Merriam-Webster).Majoritarian System: an electoral system in which those candidates or parties with the most votes are declared the winners (there may also be additional conditions) (ACE Electoral Knowledge Network definition).Open/Closed Party List: In simple terms, a “closed list is a fixed list that voters cannot change. An open list is a list that voters can change with their votes” (UN International Electoral Assistance Working Paper, 2008).Gender Quota: a special measure to enhance women’s representation, either through reserved seats or requirements for placement of women on candidate lists (this can be legally required or a voluntary practice by parties).TRAINER NOTE: Defining the key terms that will be used throughout the training allows the trainer to get a sense of participant levels and ensure a common understanding among the group. Ask participants for their thoughts on the terms and decide on common definitions.Photo: NDI
6 What Do They Do?At the most basic level, electoral systems translate the votes cast in a general election into seats won by parties and candidates.SLIDE CONTENT: What exactly does an electoral system do? Why does it matter?The system translates the votes cast in the election into how many seats are won by parties and candidates.~ IDEA Electoral System Design Handbook
7 TYPES OF ELECTORAL SYSTEMS Plurality/MajorityFPTPTRSAVBVPBVProportionalList PRSTVMixedOtherSNTVLVBCParallelSLIDE CONTENT: Proportional representation (PR) systems: where voters choose from among party lists and parties receiving a sufficient proportion of votes are awarded seats based on their share of the votes. (Types: List PR, Single Transferable Vote)Voters in a majority /plurality system select from two or more candidates running for a single seat constituency, and the candidate receiving the majority of votes is the winner. (Types: First Past the Post, Two-Round System, Alternate Vote, Block Vote, Party Block Vote)Mixed systems combine different aspects of majority and plurality systems. (Types: Parallel or Mixed Member Proportional)Other (Types: Single Non-Transferable Vote, Limited Vote, Borda Count)TRAINER NOTE: Explain the different types of electoral systems and provide examples of each. Discuss the system in the target country and when possible, use examples from the region to highlight the different systems. Note: the chart above includes the different types of sub-systems, which may be more detailed than you want to cover in the training. For information on the various types of sub-categories, see International IDEAs Electoral Design Handbook, chapter 2 (in additional resources).EXAMPLES: Plurality/Majority: Australia, India, Canada, UK, USProportional: Finland, South Africa, Democratic Republic of the CongoMixed: Georgia, Nepal, MexicoOther: Slovenia (uses Borda Count for election of minority seats)MMP
8 PROPORTIONAL REPRESENTATION AdvantagesProportionalityEncourage formation ofpartiesFacilitate diverserepresentationCandidates need to getvotes from all over, notjust from a particularregionDisadvantagesCoalition governments,which can be unstableSmall parties havedisproportionate powerAccountabilitySLIDE CONTENT: There are inherent advantages and disadvantages to a PR system, including:Advantages: Proportionality; encourages formation of political parties; facilitates diverse representation; and candidates get votes from all over the country.Disadvantages: Results in coalition governments, which can be unstable; results in small parties having disproportionate power; and can limit direct accountability (less control by voters over individual candidates).TRAINER NOTE: Explain again that a PR system tries to deliver a close match between the percentage of votes cast for a candidate or party and the percentage of seats they receive. It generally tries to minimize the number of “leftover” votes. Discuss advantages and disadvantages – mention that these are generally the case with this type of system but depends on the specific sub-type, political context, etc.
9 PROPORTIONAL REPRESENTATION List PR Multi-member districtsParties create candidate listsVoters select a partyParties are allocated seats based on percentage of vote received“Open” or “closed” listsThresholds very importantSLIDE CONTENT:Used in multi-member districts.Parties create a list of candidates in a specific order, and voters vote for a party.Parties are allocated seats based on the percentage of the vote they received.In “closed” PR systems, winning candidates are selected from the list in order.In “open” PR systems, voters can mark preferences for candidates on the list, making name recognition more important.Thresholds are very important in list PR systems.TRAINER NOTE: Be prepared to discuss these aspects and answer questions, as this may be new information to participants. The additional resources section provides further explanation for your reference.EXAMPLES: Benin, South Africa
10 BALLOT EXAMPLE Photo: ACE Project SLIDE CONTENT/EXAMPLE: Picture is a list PR ballot from Ecuador, from the ACE Project: Photo: ACE Project
11 PROPORTIONAL REPRESENTATION List PR AdvantagesReflects proportionalityAllows smaller parties tocompeteMinority and women’squotas are easier toimplementEncourages developedpartiesCriticismsNeed more developedpartiesRequires greatercoordination by parties,concentrates power inhands of central partyorganizationWeakens link between partiesand constituentsSLIDE CONTENT: So what are some of the advantages and criticisms of List PR systems?Advantages: Proportionality – the percentage of votes a party gained closer to the number of seats they gain; Smaller parties have a greater chance for representation; Minority and women’s quotas are easier to implement; Encourages developed partiesCriticisms: Need more developed parties; Requires greater coordination by parties, concentrates power in hands of central party organization; Relatively weaker links between parties and constituents
12 PROPORTIONAL REPRESENTATION Single Transferable Vote (STV) Multi-member districtsResults through series of vote countsIf no one gets quota, candidate with lowest total votes is eliminated and votes redistributedContinues until all seats are filledSLIDE CONTENT: Now we’ll talk about another type of PR system– the Single Transferable Vote, STV.Voters in multi-member districts rank candidates in order of preference.The results are determined through a series of vote counts. To win, candidates must cross a quota of votes. In the first round, those who pass, win.In the second and subsequent votes, the “surplus votes” of the elected individuals are redistributed according to the voters’ second preference.If in any count, no one gets a quota, the candidate with the lowest total votes is eliminated and his/her ballots are redistributed.Candidates continue being selected until all the seats are filled.TRAINER NOTE: Explain STV process here and provide some examples of countries using this system.Examples: Scotland, New Zealand
13 PROPORTIONAL REPRESENTATION Single Transferable Vote (STV) AdvantagesVoters choose individualsand partiesFairly proportionalresultsStrengthens party-constituent connectionCriticismsComplex/requires higherliteracyParty members competeagainst each otherParty with a plurality ofvotes can end up gettingfewer seatsSLIDE CONTENT: There are advantages and criticisms to this system too.Advantages: Voters get to choose individuals and parties; Fairly proportional results; STV in practice – districts are small, so the party-constituent connection is strongCriticisms: Requires higher level of literacy and numerical knowledge; Complex; Party members are competing against each other; Party with a plurality of votes can end up getting fewer seats
14 MAJORITARIAN Also known as “plurality system” Whoever wins the most votes, wins the election. Photo: Marie-Eve_NDI-Pakistan
15 MAJORITARIAN TYPES First Past the Post Two-Round System Block Vote Party Block VoteAlternate VoteSLIDE NOTES: There are several types of majoritarian systems, which we’ll talk about in more detail in the following slides. They are:First Past the PostThe Two-Round SystemBlock VoteParty Block VoteAlternate Vote
16 MAJORITARIAN First Past the Post (FPTP) Citizens divided into districts cast a single vote for their candidateWhoever gets the most votes, winsMore typical of countries where a single individual represents a geographic areaSLIDE CONTENT: First Past the Post (Acronym = FPTP)Citizens are split into electoral districts and cast a single vote for their candidate. Whoever gets the most votes, wins.More typical of countries where a single individual represents a geographic area.EXAMPLES: UK, Bangladesh, Canada, India, Malaysia
17 MAJORITARIAN First Past the Post AdvantagesSimpleClear choices between candidatesEncourages links between constituents and MPsCan foster more broad-based politics where there is not a majority ethnic groupCriticismsExcludes smaller partiesCan lead to exclusion of ethnic minoritiesDependent on electoral boundaries (gerrymandering)SLIDE CONTENT:Advantages: Simple; Clear choices between candidates; Representatives tied to districts, creating stronger connections between constituents and MPs; Can foster more broad-based politics where there is not a majority ethnic groupCriticisms: Excludes smaller parties and can exclude minorities and women; Can foster ethnic identification in areas with significant ethnic majorities, to the exclusion of ethnic minorities; Dependent on electoral boundaries (gerrymandering)TRAINER NOTE: It may be useful to explain the term gerrymandering and give an example of this as well as of a country with a FPTP system.
18 MAJORITARIAN Two-Round System Similar to FPTP; Candidates require absolute majorityFirst round of FPTP voting. If someone gets a majority, s/he winsIf not, some candidates may be eliminated and a second vote takes placeSLIDE CONTENT: Another type of majoritarian system is the two-round system. It is very similar to FPTP, and candidates must get an absolute majority. There is a first round of FPTP voting-- if someone gets a majority, he/she wins. If no one does, then some candidates may be eliminated and a second vote takes place.EXAMPLES: France (presidential), Congo (Brazzaville), Mauritania
19 MAJORITARIAN Two-Round System AdvantagesGives voters a secondchanceEncourages bargains andtradeoffsMinimizes vote-splittingCriticismsExpensiveSimilar disadvantages toFPTPCan trigger conflictSLIDE CONTENT:Advantages: Gives voters a second chance; Encourages bargains and tradeoffs; Minimizes vote-splittingCriticisms: Expensive; more pressure on electoral administration; Similar disadvantages to FPTP; Bad for deeply divided societies (ex. Congo-Brazzaville’s return to violence and civil war)
20 MAJORITARIAN Block Vote Multi-member districtsVoters get as many votes as there are candidates—can use all, some or none“X” number of candidates with highest vote totals electedSLIDE CONTENT:Multi-member districtsVoters get as many votes as there are candidates. They can use all, some, or none.The “X” number of candidates with the highest vote totals are elected.EXAMPLES: Jordan, Mongolia, Thailand – common in places with weaker/nascent political parties
21 MAJORITARIAN Block Vote AdvantagesVoters can pickindividualsParties can have a moreactive role than in FPTPRewards organizedpartiesCriticismsCan exaggerate FPTPproblemsCan fragment partiesCandidate selection must produce a strategic number of candidates with broad appealSLIDE CONTENT:Advantages: Voters can pick individuals: Parties can have a more active role than in FPTP: Rewards parties which are organizedCriticisms: Can exaggerate problems with FPTP, particularly disproportionality; Can fragment parties; Candidate selection must be produce a strategic number of candidates with broad appeal – “Goldilocks problem” – Has to be just right
22 MAJORITARIAN Party Block Vote Multi-member districtsParties build lists of candidatesVoters choose party list not an individualParty list gets electedSLIDE CONTENT: Again, used in multi-member districts. Parties build lists of candidates to fill all the available seats. Voters get one vote and choose between party lists, not individuals. Whichever party gets the most votes, their list is elected.EXAMPLES: Singapore, Djibouti, Chad
23 MAJORITARIAN Party Block Vote Advantages Criticisms Simple Encourages strong partiesCan facilitate minority representationCriticismsSuffers from problems of FPTP, particularly disproportionalitySLIDE CONTENT:Advantages: Simple system; encourages strong parties; can facilitate minority representationCriticisms: suffers similar issues as FPTP, such as disproportionality.
24 MAJORITARIAN Alternative Vote Single-member districts Voters rank candidate preferencesIf candidate secures an absolute majority of first choice votes, s/he is electedIf not, candidate with the lowest votes is eliminated, and votes reallocatedSLIDE CONTENT:Alternative Vote is also known as Preferential Voting or Instant RunoffUsually used in single-member districts.Voters rank their preferences between candidates.If a candidate secures an absolute majority of first choice voters, s/he is elected.If this doesn’t happen, the candidate with the lowest votes is eliminated, and his/her ballots are reallocated to each voter’s second preference.This continues until someone gets a majority.EXAMPLES: Australia, Fiji, Ireland, Papua New Guinea
25 MAJORITARIAN Alternative Vote Criticisms Advantages Candidates must seek “first” and “second” votes of votersCan encourage compromiseAvoids “tactical voting” in FPTPCriticismsComplex/ requires higher level of literacyCentrist outcomes depend more on political context than electoral systemDoesn’t work well with larger, multi-member districtsSLIDE CONTENT:Advantages: Candidates must seek “first” and “second” votes of voters; This supposedly encourages centrist politics, cooperation, and compromise; Avoids “tactical voting” in FPTPCriticisms: Requires a higher level of literacy and numerical knowledge; Centrist outcomes often depend more on political context than electoral system; Doesn’t work well with larger, multi-member districts (too many choices)
26 BALLOT EXAMPLESLIDE CONTENT: This is an example of an alternative vote ballot from Australia from the ACE Project, Electoral System Design: The New International IDEA Handbook (2005), Photo: ACE Project, International IDEA Handbook (2005)
27 ELECTORAL SYSTEM DIMENSIONS District SizeDistrict MagnitudeThresholdParty vs. CandidateQuotasSLIDE CONTENT: There are a lot of different dimensions that impact/are impacted by the electoral system, such as:How voters are divided (districts)How many votes do voters get?How many members are being elected from each voting district? (district magnitude)What are the thresholds for winning? (The threshold is the share of votes necessary for a party to enter the parliament (or other elected body) in a proportional system.)Are voters voting for individuals or parties?TRAINER NOTE: The presentation will discuss these dimensions in terms of their impact on gender in the following slides. Photo: Kathy Gest
28 DISTRICT SIZE AND MAGNITUDE Single or multiple districts?Number of representatives elected per district (district magnitude)SLIDE CONTENT:District Size: In a proportional system, the country may be divided into a number of electoral districts. Each district is allocated a certain number of seats. Alternatively, the country may serve as one single district. Generally, larger districts tend to favor women, as party lists are longer and more women may therefore be elected, provided that they are placed high enough on the lists. In a majority system, smaller districts result in a larger number of seats in the parliament, which may favor the inclusion of women.District and Party Magnitude: Larger district magnitudes, or the number of representatives elected per district - and relatedly, party magnitudes - mean that more candidates will be elected off each of the party lists. Party magnitude is defined as the number of seats a party wins in a specific electoral district (ACE Project,Since the top candidates tend to be men, the lower down the electoral cutoff, the greater the likelihood of women being elected. This is particularly salient in preferential voting systems, where top placement is not guaranteed by a quota.TRAINER NOTE: Discuss the district size and magnitude in the target country. Have participants seen changes in electoral districts in their country, and if so, how have they seen it impact election results (positively or negatively)? Photo: Megan Doherty, NDI
29 PARTY LISTS AND THRESHOLD Open vs. Closed ListsHigher thresholds tend to result in more women electedSLIDE CONTENT: Party Lists: In a proportional system, candidate lists may be “open” or “closed,” which can have ramifications on women’s chances of being elected. Open List: Voters have the opportunity to express preferences for certain candidatesand potentially affect their position on the list. Because voters tend to express preferences for well-known candidates (who are more likely to be men), open list systems generally decrease the chances of women being elected. A well-organized campaign to choose women could have the effect of more women being elected, however.Closed List: In a closed party list system, voters cannot change the order of thecandidates as placed by the party on the list. Closed party lists generally increase the chances of women being elected, assuming that female candidates are placed high enough on the list. Threshold: The threshold is the share of votes necessary for a party to enter the elected body in a PR system. The threshold for parliament is often 5 % or lower. Higher thresholds tend to increase the number of women elected. The fewer number of parties, the greater number of seats that each party will receive. With a high threshold and fewer parties in parliament, parties can put forward much longer candidate lists. But candidates not only need to be on the list, they need to be in positions that are high on the list in order to gain a seat. Lower thresholds may encourage the participation of small parties, but they would gain fewer seats so may be less likely to place women in the top positions of their lists.TRAINER NOTE: Discuss the type of system in the target country/ies. This may not be relevant to highlight in countries with majoritarian systems, though it may still be worth mentioning if the country is considering changes to its electoral system.
30 OTHER ELECTORAL SYSTEM DIMENSIONS Party vs. CandidateQuotasSLIDE CONTENT:Party Vs. Candidate: Systems in which more emphasis/burden is placed on the candidate can cause challenges for women. This is because they often are less known or visible candidates. They may have less resources to launch an individual campaign and in many countries women candidates receive less media coverage/unequal air time.On the other hand, in a system where the voter selects a party, women’s representation levels will be impacted more by the parties’ commitment to recruiting women candidates and placing them in winnable positions.Quotas: Quotas can also impact women’s representation and the type of system can impact the effectiveness of the quota, among other factors.TRAINER NOTE: Discuss the type of system in the target country/ies. More details on quotas can be found in the Electoral Quotas presentation in this module. Photo: lrobinsonNDI
31 EXERCISEIn small groups, discuss the pros and cons of your current electoral system.SLIDE CONTENT: Now we will put all of the content we’ve covered together in a brief exercise, to look at the electoral system in our country and how it impacts women’s representation.TRAINER NOTE: Break participants into small groups of 5 to discuss their electoral system details and make a list of the advantages and disadvantages for women. Have each group provide pros and cons of each aspect discussed and open to the group for discussion. If time permits, break the participants into different groups to then develop recommendations for addressing one area that was identified as a disadvantage for women’s representation.
32 ELECTORAL SYSTEMS REVIEW Proportional RepresentationMajoritarianMixedElectoral System DimensionsQuestions?Feedback?SLIDE CONTENT: Today we’ve covered the types of electoral systems, including advantages and criticisms of each. We have also discussed other electoral system dimensions, such as party magnitude, district size, etc. and their potential impact on women’s representation.TRAINER NOTE: Here you should summarize the topics and main points covered and allow time for questions, feedback and evaluation. Go over any areas where participants had specific interest or questions and may require further clarification, resources or follow up.HANDOUT: Presentation evaluation sheet