Although existing studies of international women’s rights norm diffusion demonstrate the importance of international linkages for fostering change, few examine their influence on individual attitudes. Of those that do, none consider how ties to different world cultural domains—world polity vs. world society—impact this process, despite their divergent roots. Whereas world polity via CEDAW facilitates diffusion by holding states accountable, world society via women’s international NGOs (WINGOs) appeals to citizens by encouraging activism and awareness. Focusing on trends in developing nations, which remain underexamined but theoretically relevant, I assess the unique effect of each on diffusion to attitudes. I further expand the literature to examine the direct and interactive effects of national-level compliance (quotas) on this process. Using a multilevel analysis of World Values Survey data from 31 developing nations, I demonstrate that the duration of CEDAW ratification (world polity) and nationally mandated legislative quotas (national-level compliance) directly facilitate this diffusion, but WINGOs (world society) alone do not. Yet, where quotas exist and global ties are sufficient, WINGOs become significant, and CEDAW’s effectiveness increases. These results suggest that world polity and world society are both salient for diffusion to attitudes but should be considered separately and in conjunction with national-level outcomes that moderate their effects.
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Research Article| November 27 2020
The Diffusion of International Women’s Rights Norms to Individual Attitudes: The Differential Roles of World Polity and World Society
Department of Sociology State University of New York at Stony Brook Email: email@example.com
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Sociology of Development (2020) 6 (4): 459–492.
Jessica Kim; The Diffusion of International Women’s Rights Norms to Individual Attitudes: The Differential Roles of World Polity and World Society. Sociology of Development 27 November 2020; 6 (4): 459–492. doi: https://doi.org/10.1525/sod.2020.6.4.459
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