Global Governance Institute


The Gender Gap and the Welfare State

07 March 2022, 6:15 pm–7:30 pm

Suffragette Banner (Unsplash / Birmingham Museums Trust)

Join us on 7 March for a keynote lecture with Dr. Dawn Teele (Johns Hopkins University) on the consequences of women's suffrage for electoral politics.

This event is free.

Event Information

Open to







Julia Kreienkamp


South Wing 9 Garwood Lecture Theatre
South Wing
Gower Street

Please note that this is a face-to-face event with limited ticket availability. If you have booked a ticket but find you are unable to attend we would be grateful if you could cancel the ticket to give others a chance to join us. 

What, if anything, happened after women got the right to vote? Most social scientists agree women won the vote stemmed thanks to strategic actions taken by women's movements, and that politicians' perceptions about how women would vote played a key role in reform. Yet the consequences of women's suffrage for electoral politics remain highly debated. Did they merely double the electorate in each constituency that supported each party, or did they vote differently than men? Did men, fearing women's votes would overwhelm them, respond to women's suffrage by mobilizing and retaliating? Scholarship from the United States finds that men and women tended to vote similarly, although women turned out at lower levels. What is curious about the lackluster conclusions in the US is that, at a higher level of relief, in both the US and Europe economists have found large fiscal effects emerging from suffrage reform. Scholarship on the welfare state has revealed changes in budgetary line items, including increases in health and sanitation expenditures, and enhanced social programming, and rising tariff rates, post suffrage. Set against the post mortem issued by political scientists who have studied the gender vote gap, the political economy effects of women’s enfranchisement cry out for explanation. In this spirit, this book searches for a political mechanism that links women’s suffrage to welfare state expansion and policy reform. 

About the Speaker

Dawn Teele

Associate Professor of Political Science at Johns Hopkins University

Dawn Langan Teele
Dr. Dawn Teele is the SNF Agora Institute Associate Professor of political science at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, MD. She is author of the award winning Forging the Franchise: The Political Origins of the Women's Vote (2018), and editor of Good Reasons to Run: Women and Political Candidacy (2020) and Field Experiments and Their Critics (2014). Her research has been published in a variety of outlets, including the Journal of Politics and the American Political Science Review. She is an editorial board member at numerous journals, and co-founder of EGEN, the Empirical Study of Gender Research Network, which incubates cutting edge scholarship on gender and politics. 

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