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There is increasing interest in whether improving the participation of women in government will lead to more gender equality. We test this with data collected from South India, using a natural experiment that randomly reserves 1/3rd of all presidencies in democratically elected village councils (panchayats) for women candidates. Previous research has found that such "reservations" result in policy decisions that are closer to the preferences of women, while qualitative research has argued,doi:10.1086/533551 fatcat:tobd2lwlhnauvcfohdis2tl57e