Georgians continue to support gender parity in parliament
More than half of the Georgian public support a gender-balanced parliament, with women, young people, and those not aligned with the ruling party more in favour of a 50/50 gender split.
Legislation passed in Georgia in 2020 required parties to nominate at least one out of every four candidates on their electoral lists be women, to their electoral lists, with this number increasing to one in three by 2028, promoting women's participation in politics. However, due to the first-past-the-post component of elections, less than one quarter of current parliamentarians are women.
In parallel to legislative changes, public opinion is becoming more supportive of women in leadership positions, with CRRC and NDI’s surveys from 2014 to the present showing a consistent increase in the share of the population that believes that an equal gender split in parliament is ideal.
Since 2022, a majority of the Georgian public has reported that the ideal proportion of men and women in parliament is 50% male and 50% female.
The share of the public supporting this position rose from 49% to 59% between 2021 and 2022, remaining at a similar level of 62% in 2023. By comparison, only 32% reported agreeing with this position in 2014.
The rise in people reporting an equal split between men and women in parliament coincides with a decline in the share of people reporting that 30% or less women and 70% or more men would be the ideal share. This percentage dropped from 55% in 2014 to 19% in 2023.
Women are 13 percentage points more likely to support an equal share of men and women in parliament than men. Older people (55+) are 12 percentage points less likely to support a gender-balanced parliament compared to young people (18-34).
People who report that there is no party close to them are 12 percentage points more likely to choose equal representation of men and women in parliament than Georgian Dream supporters.
Education level, settlement type, ethnicity, and wealth are not associated with support for an equal share of men and women in parliament, controlling for other factors.
The above data show that the public is increasingly in favour of having more women in Georgia’s parliament, with women, people under 55, and those who do not support Georgian Dream most in favour of that.
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But what do people want?
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While personality in politics matters greatly for the Georgian public, data from this year shows that for Georgian Dream and United National Movement voters, policy is still important.
A recent CRRC Georgia policy brief argued that what was really dividing Georgians politically was personalities rather than policies. Data from the August 2020 CRRC and NDI survey provides further evidence for this idea.
However, the data also shows a difference between Georgian Dream (GD) and United National Movement (UNM) voters in terms of policy preferences and that economic policy is the most important issue for a plurality of voters.
Political campaigning takes a wide range of forms, from digital advertising to door knocking. Generally, campaigning is believed to both mobilise voters to actually go out to vote as well as win over voters, but which is most relevant in Georgia?
Data from the August CRRC Georgia and NDI public opinion poll indicate that people who wanted to be contacted by campaigners also appeared more partisan than others. This may suggest that campaigning in Georgia will be more effective at turning out partisans than persuading the undecided.
თითქმის ერთი წელი გავიდა, რაც ჯანდაცვის მსოფლიო ორგანიზაციამ ახალი კორონავირუსი გლობალურ პანდემიად გამოაცხადა.
მას შემდეგ, საქართველოში ვირუსით ინფიცირების 260,000-ზე მეტი შემთხვევა დაფიქსირდა, საიდანაც 3,300-ზე მეტი ფატალურად დასრულდა. მნიშვნელოვნად იზარალა საქართველოს ეკონომიკამაც, რომელიც 2020 წელს 1994 წლის შემდეგ ყველაზე მეტად შემცირდა.
შესაბამისად, საინტერესოა, რამდენად წარმატებულად აფასებს მოსახლეობა საქართველოს მიერ პანდემიასთან გამკლავებას?
With the pandemic still raging and accompanying economic restrictions still in force, Georgians are unsurprisingly pessimistic about their economic future. This holds true especially for supporters of the opposition United National Movement Party, above all other party supporters.
COVID-19 restrictions have impacted people’s economic activity heavily. This is reflected in key economic indicators such as GDP, which declined by 5.9% year on year between January and November 2020.
It is also reflected in employment, with fewer people reporting starting new jobs and more people reporting having lost one, according to the 2020 Caucasus Barometer.
Controversy over Georgia’s leading politicians’ actions and statements is commonplace. Prime Minister Irakli Gharibashvili’s recent statements on the war in Ukraine and the subsequent criticism surrounding it is just one recent example.
A year before Georgia’s general elections, a CRRC survey found that less than half of surveyed Georgian partisans would remain loyal to their favoured party if its leader were to establish a new party, with supporters of the ruling party more likely to stick with their party than supporters of the opposition.