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Research Letter
May 28, 2019

Trends in Proportion of Women as Authors of Medical Journal Articles, 2008-2018

Author Affiliations
  • 1Center for Quantitative Health, Division of Clinical Research, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts
JAMA Intern Med. 2019;179(9):1285-1287. doi:10.1001/jamainternmed.2019.0907

Women remain underrepresented in academic medicine, especially among senior faculty.1 We examined trends in women’s representation as authors of medical journal articles, one key measure of academic success.2

For 9 medical specialties (pediatrics, radiology, anesthesiology, obstetrics and gynecology, neurology, general medicine, dermatology, psychiatry, and oncology), we identified original research articles published between January 1, 2008, and August 1, 2018, in the 15 journals with the highest impact factor for 2016 (eTable in the Supplement).3 We also included 4 additional general medical journals (New England Journal of Medicine, Journal of the American Medical Association, British Medical Journal, and The Lancet). We used validated software (Genderize.io [https://genderize.io]) to predict a gender and the probability of gender for an author’s first name and used a threshold of 60% to assign gender as has been implemented in previous work.4 For more information, see eMethods in the Supplement. Because this study analyzed public data, it was exempt from institutional review board approval.

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