LAC Main Seminar Series: Gendering Political Appointments: The Effect of Women Mayors on Bureaucratic Recruitment

Convener: David Doyle, University of Oxford

Speaker: Mariana Batista, Universidade Federal de Pernambuco


mariana batista photo

What is the effect of women executives on the composition of the bureaucracy? This research analyzes bureaucratic recruitment in Brazil’s 5,570 municipalities from 2009 to 2023, exploring how the election of female mayors affects the selection pattern of the local government state apparatus. The argument is that female leaders promote merit-based recruitment, especially in the first term, due to norms, socialization, and exclusion from political networks. Political appointments occur to promote representativeness in the bureaucracy or to promote a salient policy agenda. This research contributes to our understanding of the policy implications of gender diversity and representativeness in government composition and policymaking.