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Volyn Press Club Publishes Results of Regional Media Gender Sensitivity Monitoring during Elections

October 23 – Volyn Press Club published on its website the results of its October gender balance media monitoring titled “Elections and Gender Sensitivity of Media.” Volyn Press Club experts analysed 420 content pieces from October 11 to 17 in 24 regions of Ukraine.

According to the report, hyperlocal media content showed a decrease on the Gender Media Sensitivity Index, with gender balance in 38% of content pieces monitored as opposed to 42% in August of this year.

Volyn Press Club used additional criteria when doing its October monitoring, including looking at the tone of information messages about women candidates for deputy positions at local councils and mayoral positions. This criterion was included because the new election law contains a provision about a mandatory 40% quota of women for local council candidate lists.

The previous monitoring criteria were the number of women and men featured as experts and characters in media stories, the use of the proper feminine form of words when speaking about the roles/jobs of women, and the prevalence of stereotypical and sexist content.

 The key findings were: 

• Two per cent of content pieces about women candidates in the local elections had negative (or close to negative) connotations (mostly emotional criticism from opponents). The rest of the content was positive or neutral in this regard. Volyn Press Club also cautioned in its report that the outlets publishing stories about women candidates often included requirements of such candidates, such as they had to be not only professional, but also attractive and smiling, and must take care of and protect their families.

• Women were most often quoted as experts and opinion leaders in regional media in Kharkiv (in 44% of content pieces monitored), Vinnytsia (40%), Zhytomyr, Zaporizhia, and Odesa (38% each), and Donetsk oblasts (37%).

• The highest occurrence of the use of the proper feminine form of words when speaking about the roles/jobs of women was recorded in media content in Lviv (78%), followed by Luhansk (76%), Ivano-Frankivsk (72%), Ternopil (72%) and Volyn (69%).

• Women were featured as experts mostly in stories about education. Women’s expertise was also featured in stories about culture, social policy, healthcare, and, for the first time, local government policy related to the election period.

More on the website of Volyn Press Club in Ukrainian.