In Japan, lags behind both developed and developing countries in women’s political participation, the number of female assembly members is rising. However, it is unclear whether this increase has led to the adoption of more women-friendly policies. Therefore, this study empirically investigates the association between the two, focusing on local municipalities. We conducted a questionnaire survey of municipalities nationwide and found that more policies related to work–life balance were adopted when there were female assembly members than when there were not. And where more than 25% of the assembly members were women, policies on social and political participation and support for the socially vulnerable were stronger. Thus we find that in Japan’s municipal assemblies a higher proportion of female members makes the introduction of women-friendly policies more likely.

You do not currently have access to this content.