International Study Finds That Women Are Underrepresented as First Authors in Medical Research

A new study led by researchers at the University of Geneva in Switzerland finds that there remains a meaningful gender gap between the number of biomedical papers written by women and those written by men.

The researchers examined articles published in 2016 in high impact factor primary healthcare and general internal medicine journals. Overall, women were the first authors of 48 percent of the articles. But the figure was significantly higher for primary health care journals (63 percent) than for general internal medicine journals (33 percent).

Women published fewer articles, were more often affiliated with institutions in the Western world, and were more likely to publish qualitative studies rather than systematic reviews or experiments. Researchers here found that women used qualitative methods for their research three times more often than men. They also found that women were less likely to publish research on clinical trials. This may be due to the fact that women receive fewer and lower research grants and are therefore less likely to be the principal investigator and/or first author of these costly studies.

The full study, “Gender Gap in Research: A Bibliometric Study of Published Articles in Primary Health Care and General Internal Medicine,” was published in the journal Family Practice. It may be accessed here.

Filed Under: Research/Study

RSSComments (0)

Leave a Reply