Does regionalism prove to be an advantage for woman´s equality? The presence of women in business associations in Spain

GT 3.1 Grupos de interés y proceso político: Formación, estrategias y dinámicas

Casilda Güell Ampuero (Universitat Internacional de Catalunya)
Iván Medina Iborra
Joaquim Molins López-Rodó
Joan Pere Plaza Font

 As L.Chappell and P.Meier point out, the effects of regionalism for men and women as citizens have to be analyzed. For example, in Australia, the different levels of the federal government offer advantages for feminists and greater opportunity of maneuvering (Chappell, 2002). On the other hand, Swedish regional development policies create difficulties for politizing gender as a power dimension in society (Hudson and Rönnblom, 2007) The different architectures within the state affect the equal employment opportunity (Chappell and Meier, ECPR Joint Sessions 2011), and, as a consequence, its representation capacity within business associations in Spain.  This paper will look at how and if devolution enhances gender consciousness and, as a consequence, promotes women for leadership choices within business associations in Spain.  Our paper will analyse comparatively the presence of women in the executive committees in the chambers of commerce and of six Spanish regions (Catalonia, the Basque country, Galicia, Andalusia, Madrid and Comunitat Valenciana).  (2008-2012). We compare three regions with a strong nationalist basis (Catalonia, the Basque country and Galicia) and three regions with weaker regionalist claims (Madrid, Andalusia and Valencia).  The paper has four main aims: first, observing if there are inequalities between the presence of women and men and its evolution; second, observing if the feminine profile is present amongst the positions of leadership; third, observing if this correlation depends on the region under scrutiny; and, fourth, contrasting these results with the theories of power and interest groups. The methodology used will be based on Quantitative exploration of the Plenary and Executive committees of organizations. This paper is part of our research group "Business associations and regional interests: a comparative study of six European regions."