Women Who Research

The number of women researchers is on the rise worldwide.
Women Who Research

THE PROPORTION OF WOMEN among researchers and inventors around the world has steadily increased over the past two decades, according to a new report by publishing giant Elsevier. The company analyzed data from 20 years, 12 regions, and 27 subject areas to track the ways that gender affects academic research.

In nine of the regions studied-the U.S., the U.K., the European Union, Canada, Australia, France, Brazil, Demark, and Portugal-women made up more than 40 percent of researchers between 2011 and 2015. This is an improvement from the period of1996-2000, when only Portugal could boast that more than 40 percent of its researchers were women. Those numbers were still low in certain subject areas, such as the physical sciences, where women accounted for less than 25 percent of the researchers.

The report also presents other observations about women doing academic research:

  • Women published fewer research papers on average than men, but there was no evidence that this affected how their papers were cited or downloaded.
  • Women were less likely than men to collaborate internationally on research papers; they were also less internationally mobile than men.
  • Gender research is growing in terms of size and complexity, with new topics emerging over time. The former dominance of the United States in gender re­ search has declined as research activity in the European Union has risen.

"Gender in the Global Research Landscape" is available at elsevier.com/research-intelligence/resource-library/gender-report.