Mary Nugent, Ph.D. Candidate

Rutgers University

Country: United States (District of Columbia)

Research Interests

Gender and Politics

Representation and Electoral Systems

Legislative Politics

European Politics

Gender Quotas

Feminist Men

Northern Ireland

UK Parliament

Labour Party

Youth Politics

Countries of Interest

United Kingdom

United States



Journal Articles:

(2016) Intersectional institutions Representing women and ethnic minorities in the British Labour Party, Party Politics

The political representation of women and ethnic minorities has received growing attention among political parties around the world. Focusing on the British case, we map data and debates concerning the selection of female and minority candidates, highlighting the simultaneous and interactive role of gender and race in shaping citizens’ opportunities to stand for and win election. Utilizing data from the Labour Party, our analysis illustrates the implications of distinct strategies to include members of politically marginalized groups—as well as provides evidence for the potential of “tandem quotas” to result in positive outcomes for minority women. Taken together, these findings suggest the need for stronger measures on the part of Labour to encourage the selection of minority candidates; a shift from “single-axis” to “multiple-axis” thinking when devising strategies to enhance group representation; and rejection of a “zero-sum” mentality regarding the nomination of female and minority candidates.

(2016) All-Women Shortlists: Myths and Realities, Parliamentary Affairs

Gender quotas have emerged globally as a key solution for improving women's political representation. Yet in Britain—where they take the form of all-women shortlists (AWS)—they remain contentious, both within and outside political parties. We identify nine common criticisms of AWS in the British context, related to candidate recruitment and selection, party and voter support and the effectiveness of ‘quota women’ as politicians. Using qualitative and quantitative data, we find that these objections do not hold when subjected to rigorous empirical analysis, suggesting that quotas do not pose a threat to ‘merit’ at any stage of the political process.

Book Chapters:

(2015) Women in Politics in Western Europe, Women, Policy and Political Leadership

Chapter summarizing the status and progress of women in politics in Western Europe.

Media Appearances:

TV Appearances:

(2017) i24NEWS

Discussing the UK/US relationship, following President Trump's tweets on far-right group Britain First

(2015) BBC Newsnight

Interviewed about the judging of a debate between students incarcerated in a maximum security prison and Harvard.

Radio Appearances:

(2016) Atlanta NewsRadio 106.7

Discussing the UK's referendum on EU membership and its implications

Newspaper Quotes:

(2016) Bloomberg News

Quoted on Brexit voters

Blog Posts:

(2017) Washington Post, Monkey Cage Blog

"This is how some British MPs represent their constituents without ever showing up" Discussion of Northern Ireland's Sinn Fein party's practice of abstaining from participating in the UK parliament.

(2017) Washington Post, Monkey Cage Blog

"Time to celebrate women’s gains in the U.K. election? Not so fast" With Diana O'Brien, discussing the gains and persisting inequities for women in UK politics

(2016) Washington Post, Monkey Cage Blog

"Yesterday's Congressional women's softball game was bipartisan. But are women actually more bipartisan in practice?" With Cathy Wineinger. Discussing the annual women's Congressional softball game and the broader question of gender differences in legislative style.

(2016) Washington Post, Monkey Cage Blog

"So the U.K. has its second female prime minister. What policies put more women in power?" Following the election of Theresa May as UK prime minister, I discuss the status of women in politics in the UK and beyond, and the use of gender quotas.

(2016) Washington Post, Monkey Cage Blog

"Here’s what people say when they attack Hillary Clinton on Twitter" With Emma Pierson. We analysed negative tweets describing Hillary Clinton, and discussed the gendered attacks on her candidacy.

(2016) Democratic Audit UK

"Gender Quotas do not post a threat to 'merit' at any stage of the political process" With Mona Lena Krook, this blog summarises some of our findings in our Parliamentary Affairs article, dispelling some of the common myths held about gender quotas.