Institutional Constraints to Engendering the Health Sector in Bachelet’s Chile

  • Jasmine Gideon
  • Gabriela Alvarez Minte
Part of the Studies of the Americas book series (STAM)


In recent years, scholarship examining the gendered nature of institutions has increased and offered much to our understanding of both the formal and informal practices that shape institutional practices, rules, norms, and processes of change. While the nature of formal and informal institutions themselves continues to be widely debated, there is a consensus, among feminist scholars at least, that they are inherently gendered (Chappell and Waylen 2013; Kenny 2007; Mackay, Kenny, and Chappell 2010; Waylen 2014, Waylen chapter 1 this volume). One question raised within this literature is how, despite the widespread promotion of “pro-gender” policy initiatives such as gender mainstreaming, the long-term gains have been limited. Michelle Bachelet, first as minister of health (2000–2002) and subsequently in her first presidential administration (2006–2010), sought to address the deeply embedded gender inequalities within the Chilean health sector through a number of policy initiatives. However, as this chapter demonstrates, a range of gendered institutional barriers has either constrained their effectiveness or limited the possibility of a long-term reform and many of the projects were either halted or dissipated during the subsequent right-wing government of Piñera (2010–2014). The second administration of Bachelet (2014 onward) offers a new opportunity to examine the potential for challenging some of the institutional constraints that limit gender equality in the health sector.


Health Sector Emergency Contraception Informal Institution Health Reform Health Minister 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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© Jasmine Gideon and Gabriela Alvarez Minte 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jasmine Gideon
  • Gabriela Alvarez Minte

There are no affiliations available

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