Research press release


Nature Physics

Physics: Women are cited less than men

物理学の35の学術誌に掲載された100万報を超える論文の分析によると、女性が著者の物理学の論文は、男性が著者の論文と比べて著しく引用数が少ないことを報告した論文がNature Physics に掲載される。この知見から、引用傾向におけるジェンダー格差に取り組むための有効な戦略に関する情報が得られるかもしれない。


今回D Bassettたちは、1995年から2020年にかけて物理学の35の学術誌に掲載された約107万報の論文に載った筆頭著者と最終著者のジェンダーを分析した。著者のジェンダーは、名から推測された。著者たちは、このジェンダー選択法は必ずしも正確とは限らず、トランスジェンダーやノンバイナリージェンダーを考慮していないが、特定の研究を引用する人々も名からジェンダーを推測しており、認識した著者のジェンダーの影響を受けると主張できると力説している。筆頭著者と最終著者が男性の論文は、引用されることが予想より多いのに対して、筆頭著者や最終著者が女性の論文の引用は予想より少なく、総合的な引用のジェンダー格差が約4.23%であることが見いだされた。男性著者の論文に有利な引用の不均衡は、男性が執筆した論文や一般物理学の論文において、また、引用する著者が引用文献の内容や著者をあまりよく知らない場合に最も大きかった。


Physics papers authored by women are significantly under-cited compared to those authored by men, according to an analysis of over one million papers in 35 physics journals, presented in Nature Physics. The findings may inform effective strategies for tackling gender disparities in citation practices.

Citation numbers are routinely used by academic hiring committees and funding bodies to measure the research output and impact of a particular physicist. As women are underrepresented in physics and can face bias and discrimination, this bias may be reflected in citation practices, which can negatively affect the recognition of their work.

Dani S. Bassett and colleagues analysed the gender of first and last authors cited in approximately 1.07 million papers published between 1995 and 2020 in 35 physics journals. Author gender was inferred from their forename. The authors emphasize that this method of gender selection is not always accurate and does not consider trans and non-binary gender identities, however, it can be argued that those who cite a particular work also infer the gender from the forename and are influenced by the perceived gender of the author. Papers that had a first and last author who was a man were found to be cited more often than expected, whilst those with a first and/or last author who was a woman were cited less often than expected with an overall gender citation gap of roughly 4.23%. The citation imbalance in favour of man-authored papers was highest within papers written by men, within general physics papers and when citations reference work whose content or authors are less familiar to the citing authors.

The authors conclude that their findings suggest that there is a bias that favours the citation of articles by physicists who are men over those who are women. The authors go on to propose concrete actions that could help address this citation inequity. At the individual level, they point to tools for assessing the citation diversity statistics of a paper and the inclusion of a Citation Diversity Statement. On a journal level, publishing more papers authored by women might lead to more gender balanced reference lists.

doi: 10.1038/s41567-022-01770-1


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