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About ICS

The Institute of Communication Studies is a leading research organization in the field of journalism and media studies, public relations and corporate communications. Our mission is to contribute towards strengthening of Macedonian democracy by working with media, civil society and public institutions, educating a critical public that will ask for greater transparency and accountability through engagement in the policy creation process.

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Women Politicians and Media Bias

The gender narrative was significantly underrepresented in the news reports on the presidential and parliamentary elections due to the fact that it was seldom present in the rhetoric of the campaign speakers. The media hardly analysed any topics about the involvement of women in the elections, especially women from ethnic communities, which indicates the low level of awareness of the importance of gender equality issues.

This is shown by the gender-based media content analysis “Women Politicians and Media Bias”, which the Institute of Communication Studies (ICS) prepared for the period March – May 2024, i.e. starting from the official deadline for submission of presidential candidacies to the State Election Commission of March 19, until the second round of the presidential elections on May 8, which coincided with the parliamentary elections.

The research shows that the mere presence of women politicians in the media is reason enough for their stereotyping and discrimination related to traditional gender roles and the physical appearance of women, especially through the use of sensationalist language. This contributes to their further objectification and it defocuses from key political issues, reinforces attitudes about the traditional responsibilities and tasks of men and women, and perpetuates prejudice about the role of women in the public sphere.