WP3 The creation of new institutions through layering
This work package has examined the creation of new institutions that have been layered on top of existing institutions in two separate research projects.
In the first project, team members, Professor Francesca Gains (University of Manchester) and Professor Vivien Gains (University of Birmingham) investigated Police and Crime Commissioners (PCCs), a new institution that was layered on to existing local police structures in England. Their creation was part of the Conservative party’s election manifesto in 2010 and the first ones were elected in 2012. PCCs were new governance structures intended to increase participation, accountability and democracy. This research has investigated the role that gender plays in PCCs. It has examined how entrenched norms, rules and procedures have played out in this new institution and its policy outputs. The research has asked whether informal norms have changed to match changes in formal structures.
In the second project, UIC PhD student, Leah Culhane, has examined the introduction of electoral gender quotas as a new layered institution that was used for the first time in the Republic of Ireland in 2016. Leah Culhane has explored how far the quotas have disrupted existing patterns of male dominance that have long been reinforced by informal norms and practices at the local level, particularly surrounding notions of ‘localism’. These projects used a range of qualitative techniques such as participant observation and in-depth ethnographic work together with quantitative analysis.
Duration 36 months October 2013 to September 2016
- Prof Francesca Gains
- Prof Vivien Lowndes (external team member, University of Birmingham)
- Leah Culhane
- Francesca Gains and Vivien Lowndes (2014). 'How is institutional formation gendered, and does it make a difference? A new conceptual framework and a case study of Police and Crime Commissioners in England and Wales', Politics and Gender, vol. 10:4, December 2014
- Francesca Gains and Vivien Lowndes, Making violence against women a policy priority - The importance of sub national institutions in shaping policy reform: A case study of the new Police and Crime Commissioners in England and Wales, no.3, December 2015
- Francesca Gains and Vivien Lowndes, How is Gender implicated in institutional design and change. The role of informal institutions: A case study of Police and Crime Commissioners in England and Wales, no.6, December 2016
- Leah Culhane, ‘Local Heroes and ‘Cute Hoors’: Informal Institutions, Male Over representation and Candidate selection in the Republic of Ireland’ in Georgina Waylen (ed) Gender and Informal Institutions Rowman and Littlefield International, 2017
- Police and Crime Commissions - Lessons for devolution - Francesca Gains and Vivien Lowndes
- Police and Crime Commissioners - Two years on: Are there lessons for designing devolution? - Francesca Gains and Vivien Lowndes