Women don't feel 'qualified' for the position, apparently.
We’re not sure what qualifications you need in order to be Prime Minister. A slightly dubious connection to an offshore bank account, perhaps. Or maybe a fondness for bacon, and a subscription to the Oxbridge alumni newsletter. It’s really quite hard to know.
Eitherway, one thing does appear to be clear: it’s probably easier to get the job if you’re a man. And the same goes if you’re based in America – after all, at least we’ve had one female Prime Minister, right? (One, out of 83, that is.)
But the gender imbalance is so deepseated, that one massive factor behind the male majority is actually a lack of women putting themselves forward for leadership positions within the community.
Yep, while men are presumably jumping up and down at local council meetings, shouting ‘pick me, pick me, pick me’ and manspreading all over the place with excitement whenever there’s an election on the horizon, studies show that women aren’t putting themselves forward to the same extent. And it’s all because we don’t believe we’re ‘qualified’ to lead others – be that on a local or national level. Whereas our lovely penis-bearing counterparts (who have been conditioned to believe that they deserve success just the way they are) don’t appear to suffer from the same level of preemptive insecurity at all.
But while studies have found women are twice as likely as men to avoid putting themselves forward as political candidates, research has actually discovered that the women who do run for positions in parliament are actually twice as qualified as their male competitors.
‘Women face a litmus test that men do not have to pass,’ explains the 2015 paper Politics is Personal: Keys to Likeability and Electability for Women. ‘Women have to prove they are qualified. For men, their qualification is assumed.’
And that doesn’t seem fair, does it?