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3 facts about gender equality in science and health

Elsevier’s information analytics reveal surprising insights about the role of women in the global research landscape

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The information and analytics in Elsevier's free report Gender in the Global Research Landscape can help you lead gender equity initiatives in your own organization.

Much of the gender disparity discussion in science and health is driven by experience and speculation. But successful leaders use data and facts to frame discussions, mobilize action and shape policy. As an information analytics company, Elsevier undertook an evidence-based examination of the state of gender representation in research in 12 countries and regions over two decades. Based on 20 years of data from Scopus and ScienceDirect, the report provides insight and context as you lead your organization forward on an issue that has captured the attention of institutions worldwide. Here are three highlights.

Fact 1: More women are doing the science

We haven’t reached parity, but 40 percent of the researchers in the countries and regions studied are women.

Source: <a target="_blank" href="https://www.elsevier.com/__data/assets/pdf_file/0010/297253/RI_GenderReport_2017_Leaflet_A4_Digital_v2.pdf?utm_source=EC&utm_medium=EC-listicle&utm_campaign=EC-listicle">Infographic</a> based on findings from <em>Gender in the Global Research Landscape</em> (Elsevier 2017).

Fact 2: Women punch above their weight when producing impactful science in the US

Women tend to publish fewer research articles than men, but their articles are downloaded and cited at similar rates and at slightly higher rates in the United States.

Source: <a target="_blank" href="https://www.elsevier.com/__data/assets/pdf_file/0010/297253/RI_GenderReport_2017_Leaflet_A4_Digital_v2.pdf?utm_source=EC&utm_medium=EC-listicle&utm_campaign=EC-listicle">Infographic</a> based on findings from <em>Gender in the Global Research Landscape</em> (Elsevier 2017).

Fact 3: There are fewer women in international collaborations

The data shows that women are slightly less likely to collaborate internationally on research papers.

Source: <a target="_blank" href="https://www.elsevier.com/__data/assets/pdf_file/0010/297253/RI_GenderReport_2017_Leaflet_A4_Digital_v2.pdf?utm_source=EC&utm_medium=EC-listicle&utm_campaign=EC-listicle">Infographic</a> based on findings from <em>Gender in the Global Research Landscape</em> (Elsevier 2017).

Miyoko O. Watanabe is one of various experts featured in Elsevier’s 2017 report <em>Gender in the Global Research Landscape</em>.More interesting insights emerge when comparing countries. For example, Miyoko O. Watanbe, Deputy Executive Director of the Office for Diversity and Inclusion at the Japan Science and Technology Agency, notes in the report:

If we look globally, Japanese women are doing better outside Japan than inside Japan in terms of the proportion of female specialists and managers. This is, in my opinion, a global challenge for women’s inclusion in the scientific workforce.

Download the free report

Download Gender in the Global Research LandscapeIn Gender in the Global Research Landscape, Elsevier provides powerful insights and guidance on gender research and gender equality policy with governments, funders and institutions worldwide – and to inspire further evidence-based studies. The report draws from high-quality global data sources such as ScienceDirect and analytical expertise, employing bibliometric analyses and methodologies that enable gender disambiguation of authors within the Scopus abstract and citation database and includes comparisons between 27 subject areas across 12 comparator countries and regions over two decades.

Related resources

Empowering Unlimited KnowledgeWomen bring new perspectives to science – as researchers and as subjects of research. That’s why we support gender equity at Elsevier: global initiatives like the Gender Summits; career grants and awards for female researchers; and diversity and inclusion in our own workplace. By promoting gender parity, we can empower science and people to go beyond the expected, opening unlimited opportunities for research and the world. For more stories about people and projects empowered by knowledge, we invite you to visit Empowering Knowledge.

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