Ethnic Parties and Indigenous Substantive Representation in Ecuador

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


What mechanisms assure not just the presence of ethnic minority representatives but also the representation of their interests on political agendas? Research on this question has been limited. While some argue that a representative's ethnic identity is what is crucial, others point to the role of parties in substantive representation. Little research has empirically examined the role of ethnic parties specifically. Focusing on Ecuador, the first Latin American country to develop a successful Indigenous party, this research compares the impact of a strong Indigenous party, and Indigenous members of parliament on the substantive representation of Indigenous peoples. Quantitative analysis of the key factors behind the presentation of Indigenous interest bills over 20 years demonstrates that ethnic parties are key to advancing Indigenous interests.

Original languageEnglish (US)
StateAccepted/In press - 2020
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
For helpful comments, I thank Matthew Bombyk, Bianet Castellanos, Elisabeth Friedman, Lisa Hilbink, Lorena Muñoz, Amy Erica Smith, Netina Tan, two anonymous reviewers, and participants in the ‘Beyond Numbers: Comparing Mechanisms for Substantive representation of Ethnic Minorities and Indigenous Peoples’ workshop held at McMaster University, December 2018. I am indebted to the able research assistance of Margaret Darling, Irene Del Mastro, Austin Goetz and Andrea Martínez. This research was partially funded by the University of Wisconsin–Madison Fall Research Competition.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 McDougall Trust, London.


  • Indigenous
  • Latin America
  • Substantive representation
  • ethnic
  • political parties


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