“This is a man’s world … ” sang James Brown. And we’ll forget about the rest of that line for a second.
Denmark may pride itself on being at the forefront when it comes to gender equality, but following the local elections this week, it’s clear the pinnacle of local politics is brimming with testosterone and facial hair.
Of the newly-elected mayors across Denmark’s 98 municipalities, 82 are men and just 14 are women. Two municipalities, Dragør and Kerteminde, are still undecided.
“There haven’t been any female mayor candidates running for Socialdemokratiet, Venstre or Konservative in over half of the municipalities, meaning it hasn’t even been possible to vote for a female mayoral candidate there,” Christina Fiig, an associate professor in gender and European politics at Aarhus University, told Metroxpress newspaper.
Where the women at, Funen?
Still, it’s better than the last local elections in 2013 when just 12 women were elected as mayor.
The 14 elected female mayors are primarily located in Zealand and Bornholm. Only three were elected in Jutland and none in Funen.
Nine of the 14 are members of Socialdemokratiet, while Venstre accounted for only two.
“Two of the central players in local politics, Venstre and Socialdemokratiet, don’t traditionally have a high female representation on their ballots. That plays a role regarding female representation in the municipalities.”
Both parties lamented the low frequency of women at the top of local politics and maintained it was an issue that needed to be addressed.