A Multidisciplinary Study Of Gender-Based Research Productivity In The Worlds Best Journals

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Greg Tower
Julie Plummer
Brenda Ridgewell


gender, prejudice, workforce


The past academic gender literature has focused on the underproduction of academic women in research outcomes and related reasons such as prejudice, more frequent career breaks and personality differences between genders. This study examines the top six journals in the world and finds no difference between women and men productivity when the percentage of women participating in the academic work force is factored in. Women have a 30-35% participation rate in academic university positions and represented almost 30% of the authors in the top tiered journals. There are also no significantly statistical differences in Journal Impact Factor ratings between men and women. These findings are consistent across all the major disciplines, science, business and social science. Other trends are noted such as the significantly higher number of authors in science journals and the different trends between US and non-US authors. Science authors quality (as measured by Journal Impact Factor (JIF of 31.9) is significantly higher than non-science authors (JIF 6.5); thus differences in quality are discipline specific not a gender issue. The implications are that academic womens research contribution matches that of a mans productivity.


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