The Washington Post recently published a telling article about the status of women in politics in the United States today. The article opens with the details of a conference hosted by the White House Project at Agnes Scott College in Decatur, Georgia. The conference provides training and advice for women considering entering into politics. The article notes that the idea of women in politics is becoming somewhat more of a reality after the recent election involving Hillary Clinton and Sarah Palin, yet women are still largely unrepresented in American politics: the United States ranks 69th in the world in the proportion of women in the lower house of their legislature.
The article highlighted major findings of a report conducted last year that pointed to some major reasons for the continued low level of women’s participation in government. For one, women are not being recruited into politics at the same level as men. In addition, women are more concerned about losing their privacy than men. But the number one barrier to leadership for women is a lack of self-confidence in their own skills and competencies. In light of these findings, many researchers and scholars feel that the best way to improve this situation is to instill leadership into girls at a young age, encouraging them to think about the possibility of a career in politics in school.
To read more about this study and others, and also to get a glimpse into the personal stories of various women considering a life in politics, read the full Washington Post article. Also, read previous blogs about women making strides in politics over the last year here, here, and here.