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Local Democratic Governance towards Equality: Implementation of Gender+ Equality Policies in times of Anti-Gender and Democratic Backsliding


LODGE studies local responses to one of the crucial challenges of contemporary European societies: preserving mechanisms designed to protect gender equality and democratic inclusion in an increasingly polarized climate. The project examines localism, a form of governance that privileges local institutions as key sites of civic engagement and citizen control over public services. Specifically, LODGE tests the scholarly agreement that localism is a particularly fertile terrain for the design and implementation of gender+ equality and democratic inclusion policies, because of the capacity of local administrations to reorganize political priorities and redistribute power and resources more equitably. The project proposes an empirical study to measure the implementation of the legislative agenda of Barcelona and Madrid city councils during 2015-2019, two local governments in Spain that professed localism and designed pioneering feminist politics. The project will deliver: 1) an analysis of gender+ equality and democratic inclusion policies that are distinctive of localist agendas; and 2) an analysis of the obstacles and opportunities to implement such policies, with a specific focus on the discursive negotiation of policy meanings, and the impact of key actors and organizational structures in the success of policy implementation. LODGE will conduct content and frame analysis of policy documents, in-depth interviews with municipal technical personnel, participant observation in technical meetings, two workshops with policy experts, and will produce a technical report. The project will contribute to develop the increasingly relevant concept of localism from a gender+ equality perspective, advance the field of implementation studies of gender equality policies, empirically document experiences to ‘engender’ spaces of democratic participation, bridge the gap between non-academic stakeholders and academic scholars, and contribute to policy-making with policy recommendations.


Net EU contribution
€ 181 152,96
Avenida De Seneca 2
28040 Madrid

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Comunidad de Madrid Comunidad de Madrid Madrid
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Non-EU contribution
No data