Women’s Political Representation in Indonesia: Who Wins and How?

Edward Aspinall, Sally White, Amalinda Savirani

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


    This article analyses barriers to women’s political representation in Indonesia and the ways that women candidates overcome them. Surveying the literature and drawing on three data sources – findings of thirteen teams of researchers studying women candidates running in the 2019 election, a survey of 127 such candidates, and a nationally representative survey of Indonesian citizens – the article identifies widespread patriarchal attitudes as one significant barrier, alongside structural disadvantages. It highlights two distinctive methods by which women candidates aim to overcome these barriers: one group of candidates target women voters and draw on women’s networks to mobilise what has been called “homosocial capital”; another group of dynastic candidates rely on the political and financial resources of (often male) relatives. The article briefly surveys the place of political Islam in both impeding and facilitating women’s representation. By surveying these issues, the article introduces this special issue on women’s political representation and the 2019 election.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)3-27
    JournalJournal of Current Southeast Asian Affairs
    Issue number1
    Publication statusPublished - 2021


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