Final Report on Gender Monitoring of the Local Elections in Ukraine 2020

The Ukrainian Women’s Fund in partnership with the National Democratic Institute (NDI) has carried out gender monitoring of the local elections that took place on 25 October 2020.

The gender monitoring was aimed to deliver a comprehensive gender analysis of the electoral process with the purpose of identifying opportunities and obstacles for women’s participation in elections and their election to local councils and for the positions of mayors of communities, as well as their participation in the distribution of leadership positions following the elections.

The monitoring involved analysis of the following aspects: legislation, composition of political party central governing bodies and oblast branches, representation of women among the candidates on political party electoral lists for oblast councils, women’s representation among the candidates for mayors of communities and for councilors of city councils in big cities, a sample of 10 cities with up to 10,000 voters, as well as interviews with women candidates and elected women councilors, women and men representatives of political parties.

Analysis of the women candidates’ experience in the electoral process was carried out in three stages: at the first stage of the election campaign, at its final stage, and after the election and certification of election results. In total, 200 women candidates have been interviewed. The candidates live in the 10 following oblasts: Vinnytsia, Donetsk, Zaporizhia, Zhytomyr, Lviv, Odesa, Khmelnytskyi, Kharkiv, Kherson, and Chernivtsi. They ran for oblast councils, city councils in cities-oblast centers, for councils in communities with up to 10,000 voters, as well as for the posts of city mayors. They ran on party lists of a variety of political parties and as self-nominated candidates. Among the women candidates interviewed, 83 were members of political parties and 117 did not belong to any political party. 176 women among the interviewed candidates ran on political party lists and 24 of them ran as self-nominated candidates.

The overall representation of women on political party lists, women’s representation among the leaders of the lists, among the leaders of territorial district electoral lists, and among top three candidates on the lists have been analyzed. Standing for re-election and re-election of councilors, multiple nominations, the influence of “open lists,” withdrawal of candidates and elected councilors, women candidates’ experience in the election campaign, and women’s representation in leadership positions after the elections have also been analyzed.

Interim results of the gender monitoring of local elections were presented in March-April 2021 during 8 regional and interregional roundtables in Zaporizhia, Zhytomyr, Lviv, Odesa, Khmelnytskyi, Kharkiv, Kherson, and Chernivtsi. During the events, 330 women candidates, councilors, mayors of communities, representatives of local governments and civil society organizations were involved in developing recommendations based on the local elections and gender monitoring results.

The full text of the report in English is available for download by the link.