Women Are a Small Fraction of Editorial Board Members in Environmental Science and Public Health Journals


A new study led by Sara Dada of University College Dublin in Ireland and Kim Robin van Daalen of the University of Cambridge in England examined the gender makeup of the editorial boards of 591 journals in the fields of environmental sciences and public health. They were able to analyze data for 27,772 editors at these journals.

van Daalen

The results showed that nearly two thirds of editors were men. Women made up 32.9 percent of the editors. More than 75 percent of all journals had editorial boards that were at least 55 percent male. Only 13.2 percent of the journals had editorial boards where men made up between 45 and 55 percent of all members. In journals based in low-income countries, none of the editors-in-chief and only 27 editors in total were women.

The authors state that “in light of global environmental crises and the need for sustainable development, the fields of public health and environmental sciences have become increasingly interrelated. Both fields require interdisciplinary thinking and global solutions, which is largely directed by scientific progress documented in peer-reviewed journals. Journal editors play a critical role in coordinating and shaping what is accepted as scientific knowledge.”

The authors conclude that the problems facing the world in environmental science and public health “call for interdisciplinary, comprehensive and global solutions. Yet, how could one envision such solutions when a select, unrepresentative demographic controls the voice and narrative of what is considered scientific knowledge?”

Filed Under: Research/Study

RSSComments (0)

Leave a Reply