More women on Dutch municipal councils

More women on Dutch municipal councils

Recently, the Dutch municipal council elections, in which expats were able to vote, were held and the results showed a shift in parties holding the majority of the seats. This was not the only change that resulted from the election.

Women councillors in the Netherlands

According to figures from Trouw, in 70 of the largest municipalities in the Netherlands, the number of women on the municipal council has increased from 28 percent, four years ago, to 34 percent. At least 75 women have been given a place on the council by means of preferential votes.

With results such as these, it seems that the citizens’ initiative “Stem op een Vrouw” (Vote for a Woman) has been successful. The initiative was campaigned for in the run-up to the elections. An analysis by NOS before the elections revealed that of all the candidates on municipal council electoral lists, only three in 10 were women.

The Dutch political party running for the municipal council elections throughout the country with the highest proportion of women on its electoral list was GroenLinks, with 41 percent. Party for the Animals had a higher proportion of women on its electoral list, namely 55 percent. However, the party only ran for election in 18 municipalities.

Sex equality in Dutch municipal councils

After the elections this year, some Dutch councils have ended up with an equal number of men and women governing them. In Amsterdam and Heerhugowaard, seats on the council are shared equally.

In Heerenveen and Waddinxveen, there are more women than men on the municipal council boards. In Heerenveen, the number of women councillors doubled from 7 to 15. Utrecht just missed out on an equal share of seats between men and women. Voters for the parties D66, SP and GroenLinks were more inclined to use their preferential vote for women.

Mina Solanki


Mina Solanki

Completed her Master's degree at the University of Groningen and worked as a translator before joining IamExpat. She loves to read and has a particular interest in Greek mythology. In...

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