Elites are predominantly composed of upper-class men. This well-known fact serves as the starting point for investigating the significance of social class, education, and gender for elite recruitment in Switzerland. Recruitment processes for three important elite groups - parliament, university professors, and top management - are systematically compared. Our findings, unprecedented in Switzerland, show that elite recruitment chances are greatly determined by sex and education, which is known to be strongly dependent on social origin. Within this general pattern we find interesting differences between the three elite groups examined and between men and women.

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