Men Are More Than Two-Thirds of All Experts Quoted in a Leading Science Publication

A new study by women researchers at the University of Colorado School of Medicine finds that 69 percent of all direct quotes from experts quoted in articles in the publication Nature, a leading international scientific journal, were from men. The analysis covered more than 16,000 Nature articles published over the last 15 years — between 2005 to 2020.

The authors did find that some progress is being made. In 2005, the fraction of quotes predicted to be from male people was 86.87 percent whereas in 2020 it was 68.5 percent.

The authors stated that “scientists fielding reporter inquiries can audit themselves to examine the extent to which there are disparities in the sets of experts they recommend. Journalists and the scientists they interview have a unique opportunity to shape the public and their peers’ perspectives on who is a scientific expert. Their choice of coverage topics and interviewees could help to reduce disparities in the outputs of science-related journalism.”

The full study, “Analysis of Scientific Journalism in Nature Reveals Gender and Regional Disparities in Coverage,” was published on bioRXiv, the biology preprint service. It may be accessed here.

Filed Under: Research/Study


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