A data-backed study of gender differences in mathematics publication patterns

Sunday, July 17, 2016
Helena Mihaljevic-Brandt, Lucia Santamaria, Marco Tullney

The persistence of the gender gap in academia, especially in
traditionally male-dominated STEM fields, continues to puzzle
researchers, decades after affirmative-action measures have been
introduced. In mathematics, gender inequality still prevails, despite a
growing presence of women on all academic levels. It is often arduous to
quote comprehensive figures and statistics on women in mathematics, and
without such data, explanations for the gender gap are difficult to find.

A relatively unbiased source of data on mathematicians' careers is their
publication record. We have examined publication patterns in mathematics
since the 1970s, drawn from hundreds of thousands of records from the
extensive zbMATH database. We have searched for differences in
publication patterns of men and women mathematicians over the past four
decades, particularly looking at journal quality, topical distribution,
and coauthor networks. In this talk we will present our data-backed
findings, which support the idea that certain gender differences in the
publication patterns of men and women mathematicians do indeed exist.
Our analysis aims at providing a basis for further discussions on how to
address the problem of closing the gender gap in mathematics.

Talk given on 17 th july 2016 in Berlin at the occasion of EMS/EWM Survey Lectures ìn the 7th ECM Berlin 2016. Here are the slides.

Full paper available here.