|Implementation of public policy in Polish rural municipalities managed by woman local leaders
The paper will present the main directions of women local leaders’ activities aimed at implementing public policies in rural municipalities. Due to the process of socialization and the issues stereotypically assigned to the female gender, women perceive the implementation of public tasks differently, not only those related to education policy, senior policy, cultural policy, but also horizontally to rural development policy. The following theories will be important in the discussion : the theory of the institutional framework of rational choice (Ostrom, 2007), the functioning of network structures (Zybała, 2015), and the stage model created on the basis of the decision-making process by H. Lasswell (Ronit, Porter, 2015). Women local leaders in rural areas in Poland are mainly sołtyski (village heads), and the percentage of women is over 43% among village heads, about 30% among councillors and only 12% among municipality heads.
Which of the public services are most often provided by women local leaders in rural communes?
Do female local leaders attach more importance to the delivery of public services than male leaders?
Which of the activities undertaken by local leaders have been limited to the greatest extent by the covid pandemic?
The methods applied to achieve the goals of the paper include: institutional and legal method to show the constitutional aspect of the analysed functions, and the comparative one to show the direction of changes in the political activity of women. The analysis embraced the outcomes of the local elections of 1990-2018 posted on the website of the National Election Commission and the Central Statistical Office. The article uses the results of empirical research (postal questionnaires and in-depth interviews). The postal survey was conducted in 2018 (before the latest local election) in municipalities from 4 out of 16 provinces in Poland: Świętokrzyskie, Podlaskie, Podkarpackie, Lubelskie (all typically agricultural). The questionnaire was sent to councillors in the aforesaid municipalities with a high percentage of women in the council and a low percentage of women in the council. The technique of an in-depth interview was used to round out information about local leadership of women. Respondents (41 people) were mostly women (70%) in the position of municipal administrator/mayor, councillor and village administrator in 20 municipalities from four provinces (the same as in the survey stage).
Ostrom E., 2007, Institutional Rational Choice: An Assessment of the Institutional Analysis and Development Framework, [in:] P. A. Sabatier (ed.), Theories of the Policy Process, Cambridge.
Zybała A., 2015, Polityka publiczna wobec teorii i jej praktyki w Polsce, Wrocławskie Studia Politologiczne, Vol. t. 18.
Ronit K., Porter T., 2015, Harold D. Lasswell „The Decision Process: Seven Categories of Functional Analysis” [in:] S. J. Balla, M. Lodge, E. Page (ed.), The Oxford Handbook of Classics in Public Policy and Administration, Oxford.