The number of women to men among all authors is moving closer to being equal (Source: Scopus data in The researcher journey through a gender lens, Elsevier, 2020)While overall the representation of women in research is increasing, inequality remains. Data show where effort is still needed to ensure equality for women in terms of publication outputs, citations, awarded grants, and collaborations.
In all countries studied and the EU28, the ratio of women to men among all authors was closer to parity during a recent 5-year period compared with a decade ago. Men are more highly represented among authors with a long publication history while women are highly represented among authors with a short publication history.
On average, women researchers author fewer publications than men in every country, regardless of authorship position. The least difference in the number of publications by women compared to men is observed among first authors, and the biggest difference is observed among all authors. Among first authors, the average citation impact of men is higher than that of women, suggesting gender bias in citation practice.
The greatest increase in the proportion of women among authors is seen in nursing and psychology, and the smallest increase is in the physical sciences. (Source: Scopus data in The researcher journey through a gender lens, Elsevier, 2020)
Publishing careers and mobility
The percentage of women among all authors in the cohort declines over time (between the year of authors’ first publication in 2009 up to 2018) in all countries and regions except Portugal. In every country, the percentage of women who continue to publish is lower than men who continue to publish.
Across many subject areas and countries, men tend to have more co-authors than women and this difference is wider for authors with a longer publication history. Women and men are more similar in the way they are connected to their potential collaborative space (second-order collaborators) through their direct collaborators.
Researcher attitudes towards gender diversity and equity vary widely among men and women. Most of the differences in viewpoints are related to the importance in individual places on gender balance and to the perception of fairness in the academic system.
Survey response to the statement: "In my organization, women have to perform better than men to be considered good at their job," by gender and subject area.Survey response to the statement: "In my organization, women have to perform better than men to be considered good at their job," by gender and subject area.
There are two opposing opinions on the causes of gender imbalance and inequality in academia. Some groups (men and women) attribute gender inequality to the attitudes and ambition levels of women. Other groups attribute gender inequality to a systemic and cultural (unconscious) bias against women.