Better Procedures for Fairer Outcomes: Youth Quotas in Parliaments

Juliana Bidadanure


In this article, I put forward an instrumental justification for the introduction of youth quotas in parliaments on grounds of justice between coexisting generations. I provide a two-fold argument drawing on the distinction between “substantive representation” and “symbolic representation”. I argue that these jointly provide a good basis for a “politics of youth presence” in parliaments. In the first section, I evaluate the impact that youth quotas can have on enhancing the chances of fair youth policies (substantive representation). In the second section, I show that youth quotas can play an important symbolic role in the promotion of a community of political equals, with potential implications for youth political participation (symbolic representation).

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