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COVID-19, Gender/Sex, Publishing

Abramo, G., D’Angelo, C.A. & Mele, I. (2022). Impact of Covid-19 on research output by gender across countries. Scientometrics. Advance online publication

The massive shock of the COVID-19 pandemic has already shown its negative effects on economies around the world, unprecedented in recent history. COVID-19 infections and containment measures caused a general slowdown in research and new knowledge production. Because of the link between R&D output and economic growth, it is to be expected then that a slowdown in research activities will slow in turn the global recovery from the pandemic. Many recent studies also claim an uneven impact on scientific production across gender. In this paper, we investigate the phenomenon across countries, analysing preprint depositions in main repositories. Differently from other works, that compare the number of preprint depositions before and after the pandemic outbreak, we analyse the depositions trends across geographical areas, and contrast after-pandemic outbreak depositions with expected ones. Differently from common belief and initial evidence, the decrease in research output is not more severe for women than for men.
Gender/Sex, Hiring, Promotion, & Tenure

American Association of University Professors (2019). The annual report on the economic status of the profession, 2018-2019.

COVID-19, Gender/Sex, Publishing

Andersen, J. P., Nielsen, M. W., Simone, N. L., Lewiss, R. E., & Jagsi, R. (2020). COVID-19 medical papers have fewer women first authors than expected. eLife9, e58807.

The COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in school closures and distancing requirements that have disrupted both work and family life for many. Concerns exist that these disruptions caused by the pandemic may not have influenced men and women researchers equally. Many medical journals have published papers on the pandemic, which were generated by researchers facing the challenges of these disruptions. Here we report the results of an analysis that compared the gender distribution of authors on 1893 medical papers related to the pandemic with that on papers published in the same journals in 2019, for papers with first authors and last authors from the United States. Using mixed-effects regression models, we estimated that the proportion of COVID-19 papers with a woman first author was 19% lower than that for papers published in the same journals in 2019, while our comparisons for last authors and overall proportion of women authors per paper were inconclusive. A closer examination suggested that women’s representation as first authors of COVID-19 research was particularly low for papers published in March and April 2020. Our findings are consistent with the idea that the research productivity of women, especially early-career women, has been affected more than the research productivity of men.
Group Disparities & intergroup relations, LGBTQ+, Schemas/Stereotypes/Evaluation Bias, Teaching

Anderson, K. J., & Kanner, M. (2011). Inventing a gay agenda: Students' perceptions of lesbian and gay professors, Journal of Applied Social Psychology, 41(6), 1538-1564.

Students' perceptions of lesbian and gay professors were examined in 2 studies (Ns = 622 and 545). An ethnically diverse sample of undergraduates read and responded to a syllabus for a proposed Psychology of Human Sexuality course. Syllabuses varied according to the political ideology, carefulness, sexual orientation, and gender of the professor. Students rated professors on dimensions such as political bias, professional competence, and warmth. Lesbian and gay professors were rated as having a political agenda, compared to heterosexual professors with the same syllabus. Student responses differed according to their homonegativity and modern homonegativity scores. The findings from these studies suggest that students may use different criteria to evaluate lesbian, gay, and heterosexual professors' ability to approach courses objectively.

Anderson, K. J., & Kanner, M. (2011). Inventing a gay agenda: Students’ perceptions of lesbian and gay professors, Journal of Applied Social Psychology, 41(6), 1538-1564.

Gender/Sex, Group Disparities & intergroup relations

Astin, H. S., & Cress, C. M. (2003). A national profile of women in research universities. In L. S. Hornig (Ed.), Equal rites, unequal outcomes: Women in American research universities (pp. 53-88). New York: Kluwer Academic/Plenum Publishers.

(Workplace) Climate, Diverse teams/perspectives, Group Disparities & intergroup relations, Strategies for Improvement

Bezrukova, K., Spell, C., Perry, J. & Jehn, K. (2016). A meta-analytical integration of over 40 years of research on diversity training evaluation. Psychological Bulletin, 142(11), 1227-1274.

This meta-analysis of 260 independent samples assessed the effects of diversity training on 4 training outcomes over time and across characteristics of training context, design, and participants. Models from the training literature and psychological theory on diversity were used to generate theory-driven predictions. The results revealed an overall effect size (Hedges g) of .38 with the largest effect being for reactions to training and cognitive learning; smaller effects were found for behavioral and attitudinal/affective learning. Whereas the effects of diversity training on reactions and attitudinal/affective learning decayed over time, training effects on cognitive learning remained stable and even increased in some cases. While many of the diversity training programs fell short in demonstrating effectiveness on some training characteristics, our analysis does reveal that successful diversity training occurs. The positive effects of diversity training were greater when training was complemented by other diversity initiatives, targeted to both awareness and skills development, and conducted over a significant period of time. The proportion of women in a training group was associated with more favorable reactions to diversity training. Implications for policy and directions for future research on diversity training are discussed.
Gender/Sex, Group Disparities & intergroup relations, Schemas/Stereotypes/Evaluation Bias

Bloodhart, B., Balgopal, M. M., Casper, A. M. A., Sample McMeeking, L. B., & Fischer, E. V. (2020). Outperforming yet undervalued: Undergraduate women in STEM. Plos One, 15(6), e0234685.

In spite of efforts to increase gender diversity across many science fields, women continue to encounter beliefs that they lack ability and talent. Undergraduate education is a critical time when peer influence may alter choice of majors and careers for women interested in science. Even in life science courses, in which women outnumber men, gender biases that emerge in peer-to-peer interactions during coursework may detract from women’s interest and progress. This is the first study of which we are aware to document that women are outperforming men in both physical and life science undergraduate courses at the same institution, while simultaneously continuing to be perceived as less-able students. This is problematic because undergraduate women may not be able to escape gender-ability stereotypes even when they are outperforming men, which has important implications for 1) the recognition of women’s achievements among their peers in undergraduate education and 2) retention of women in STEM disciplines and careers.
COVID-19, Gender/Sex, Publishing

Böhm, V., & Liu, J. (2022). Impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on publishing in astronomy in the initial two years. Nature Astronomy.

The COVID-19 pandemic and associated lockdowns changed working conditions for many researchers worldwide. While there exists initial evidence that these conditions have had a measurable impact on the field of astronomy, a comprehensive quantitative analysis is still outstanding. We study the effects of the pandemic on the astronomy community worldwide, with a special focus on early-career and underrepresented female scientists, using public records of publications. We find that the overall output of the field, measured by the yearly paper count, has increased. This is mainly driven by boosted individual productivity in most countries. However, a decreasing number of incoming new researchers is seen in most countries we studied, indicating higher barriers for new researchers to enter the field or complete their first project during COVID. The overall improvement in productivity is not equally shared by women. A smaller fraction of papers are written by female astronomers and fewer women are among incoming new researchers as compared to pre-pandemic trends, in 14 out of 25 countries we studied. Even though female astronomers became more productive during COVID, the level of improvement is smaller than for men. Pre-COVID, female astronomers in countries such as the Netherlands, Australia and Switzerland were equally as or even more productive than their male colleagues. During COVID, on average, no single country’s female astronomers were able to be equally productive as their male colleagues.

Bohnet, I. (2016). What Works. Harvard University Press.


Bohnet, I. (2016). How to take the bias out of interviews. Harvard Business Review, April 8, 2016.


Brown, S. (2019). More Colleges Are Asking Scholars for Diversity Statements. Here’s What You Need to Know. The Chronicle of Higher Education, January 29, 2019.


Budden, A. E., Tregenza, T., Aarssen, L. W., Koricheva, J., Leimu, R. & Lortie, C. J. (2008). Double-blind review favours increased representation of female authors. Trends in Ecology & Evolution, 23, 4–6.

Gender/Sex, Hiring, Promotion, & Tenure, Publishing, Strategies for Improvement

Budden, A. E., Tregenza, T., Aarssen, L. W., Koricheva, J., Leimu, R., & Lortie, C. J. (2008). Double-blind review favours increased representation of female authors. Trends in Ecology & Evolution, 23(1), 4-6.

Double-blind peer review, in which neither author nor reviewer identity are revealed, is rarely practised in eco- logy or evolution journals. However, in 2001, double-blind review was introduced by the journal Behavioral Ecology. Following this policy change, there was a significant increase in female first-authored papers, a pattern not observed in a very similar journal that provides reviewers with author information. No negative effects could be identified, suggesting that double-blind review should be considered by other journals.
COVID-19, Funding & Awards, Group Disparities & intergroup relations, Publishing, Race/Ethnicity, Strategies for Improvement

Carr, R. M., Lane-Fall, M. B., South, E., Brady, D., Momplaisir, F., Guerra, C. E., Montoya-Williams, D., Dalembert, G., Lavizzo-Mourey, R., & Hamilton, R. (2021). Academic careers and the COVID-19 pandemic: Reversing the tide. Science Translational Medicine, 13(584), eabe7189.

The COVID-19 pandemic halted research operations at academic medical centers. This shutdown has adversely affected research infrastructure, the current research workforce, and the research pipeline. We discuss the impact of the pandemic on overall research operations, examine its disproportionate effect on underrepresented minority researchers, and provide concrete strategies to reverse these losses.

Carrell, S. E., Page, M. E. & West, J. E. (2010). Sex and science: How professor gender perpetuates the gender gap. The Quarterly Journal of Economics, 125, 1101–1144.

Gender/Sex, Strategies for Improvement, Teaching

Carrell, S. E., Page, M. E., & West, J. E., (2010). Sex and science: How professor gender perpetuates the gender gap. The Quarterly Journal of Economics, 125(3), 1101-1144.

Why aren't there more women in science? This paper begins to shed light on this question by exploiting data from the U.S. Air Force Academy, where students are randomly assigned to professors for a wide variety of mandatory standardized courses.We focus on the role of professor gender. Our results suggest that although professor gender has little impact on male students, it has a powerful effect on female students' performance in math and science classes, and high-performing female students' likelihood of taking future math and science courses, and graduating with a STEM degree. The estimates are largest for students whose SAT math scores are in the top 5% of the national distribution. The gender gap in course grades and STEM majors is eradicated when high-performing female students are assigned to female professors in mandatory introductory math and science coursework.
(Workplace) Climate, Diverse teams/perspectives, Group Disparities & intergroup relations, Hiring, Promotion, & Tenure, Schemas/Stereotypes/Evaluation Bias, Strategies for Improvement

Carter, E. R., Onyeador, I. N., & Lewis Jr, N. A. (2020). Developing & delivering effective anti-bias training: Challenges & recommendations. Behavioral Science & Policy, 6(1), 57-70.

Organizations invest nearly $8 billion annually in diversity training, but questions have arisen about whether training actually reduces biased attitudes, changes behavior, and increases diversity. In this article, we review the relevant evidence, noting that training should be explicitly aimed at increasing awareness of and concern about bias while at the same time providing strategies that attendees can use to change their behavior. After outlining five challenges to developing and delivering training that meets these goals, we provide evidence-based recommendations that organizations and facilitators can use as a blueprint for creating anti-bias training programs that work. One recommendation is to couple investment in anti-bias training with other diversity and inclusion initiatives to help ensure that the billions spent each year yield meaningful change.

Carter, E. R., Onyeador, I. N., & Lewis, N. A., Jr. (2020). Developing & delivering effective anti-bias training: Challenges & recommendations. Behavioral Science & Policy, 6(1), 57–70.

(Workplace) Climate, Diverse teams/perspectives, Gender/Sex, Group Disparities & intergroup relations, Schemas/Stereotypes/Evaluation Bias, Strategies for Improvement

Casad, B. J., Franks, J. E., Garasky, C. E., Kittleman, M. M., Roesler, A. C., Hall, D. Y., & Petzel, Z. W. (2021). Gender inequality in academia: Problems and solutions for women faculty in STEM. Journal of Neuroscience Research, 99(1), 13-23.

Recently there is widespread interest in women's underrepresentation in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM); however, progress toward gender equality in these fields is slow. More alarmingly, these gender disparities worsen when examining women's representation within STEM departments in academia. While the number of women receiving postgraduate degrees has increased in recent years, the number of women in STEM faculty positions remains largely unchanged. One explanation for this lack of progress toward gender parity is negative and pervasive gender stereotypes, which may facilitate hiring discrimination and reduce opportunities for women's career advancement. Women in STEM also have lower social capital (e.g., support networks), limiting women's opportunities to earn tenure and learn about grant funding mechanisms. Women faculty in STEM may also perceive their academic climate as unwelcoming and threatening, and report hostility and uncomfortable tensions in their work environments, such as sexual harassment and discrimination. Merely the presence of gender-biased cues in physical spaces targeted toward men (e.g., “geeky” décor) can foster a sense of not belonging in STEM. We describe the following three factors that likely contribute to gender inequalities and women's departure from academic STEM fields: (a) numeric underrepresentation and stereotypes, (b) lack of supportive social networks, and (c) chilly academic climates. We discuss potential solutions for these problems, focusing on National Science Foundation-funded ADVANCE organizational change interventions that target (a) recruiting diverse applicants (e.g., training search committees), (b) mentoring, networking, and professional development (e.g., promoting women faculty networks); and (c) improving academic climate (e.g., educating male faculty on gender bias).
(Workplace) Climate, Strategies for Improvement

Cech E. A. (2013) The (mis)framing of social justice: Why ideologies of depoliticization and meritocracy hinder engineers’ ability to think about social injustices. In J. Lucena (Ed.), Engineering education for social justice (pp. 67-84). Springer.

Engineers will incorporate considerations of social justice issues into their work only to the extent that they see such issues as relevant to the practice of their profession. This chapter argues that two prominent ideologies within the culture of engineering—depoliticization and meritocracy—frame social justice issues in such a way that they seem irrelevant to engineering practice. Depoliticization is the belief that engineering is a “technical” space where “social” or “political” issues such as inequality are tangential to engineers’ work. The meritocratic ideology—the belief that inequalities are the result of a properly-functioning social system that rewards the most talented and hard-working—legitimates social injustices and undermines the motivation to rectify such inequalities. These ideologies are built into engineering culture and are deeply embedded in the professional socialization of engineering students. I argue that it is not enough for engineering educators to introduce social justice topics into the classroom; they must also directly confront ideologies of meritocracy and depoliticization. In other words, cultural space must be made before students, faculty and practitioners can begin to think deeply about the role of their profession in the promotion of social justice.
Funding & Awards, Group Disparities & intergroup relations, Race/Ethnicity

Chen, C. Y., Kahanamoku, S. S., Tripati, A., Alegado, R. A., Morris, V. R., Andrade, K., & Hosbey, J. (2022). Meta-research: Systemic racial disparities in funding rates at the National Science Foundation. eLife

Concerns about systemic racism at academic and research institutions have increased over the past decade. Here, we investigate data from the National Science Foundation (NSF), a major funder of research in the United States, and find evidence for pervasive racial disparities. In particular, white principal investigators (PIs) are consistently funded at higher rates than most non-white PIs. Funding rates for white PIs have also been increasing relative to annual overall rates with time. Moreover, disparities occur across all disciplinary directorates within the NSF and are greater for research proposals. The distributions of average external review scores also exhibit systematic offsets based on PI race. Similar patterns have been described in other research funding bodies, suggesting that racial disparities are widespread. The prevalence and persistence of these racial disparities in funding have cascading impacts that perpetuate a cumulative advantage to white PIs across all of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.
(Workplace) Climate, Gender/Sex, Group Disparities & intergroup relations, Mentorship

Clancy, K. B. H., Nelson, R. G., Rutherford, J. N., & Hinde, K. (2014). Survey of Academic Field Experiences (SAFE): Trainees report harassment and assault. PLoS ONE 9(7), e102172.

Little is known about the climate of the scientific fieldwork setting as it relates to gendered experiences, sexual harassment, and sexual assault. We conducted an internet-based survey of field scientists (N = 666) to characterize these experiences. Codes of conduct and sexual harassment policies were not regularly encountered by respondents, while harassment and assault were commonly experienced by respondents during trainee career stages. Women trainees were the primary targets; their perpetrators were predominantly senior to them professionally within the research team. Male trainees were more often targeted by their peers at the research site. Few respondents were aware of mechanisms to report incidents; most who did report were unsatisfied with the outcome. These findings suggest that policies emphasizing safety, inclusivity, and collegiality have the potential to improve field experiences of a diversity of researchers, especially during early career stages. These include better awareness of mechanisms for direct and oblique reporting of harassment and assault and, the implementation of productive response mechanisms when such behaviors are reported. Principal investigators are particularly well positioned to influence workplace culture at their field sites.
(Workplace) Climate, Funding & Awards, Gender/Sex, Group Disparities & intergroup relations, Hiring, Promotion, & Tenure, Strategies for Improvement, Teaching

Committee on Women Faculty. (1999, March). A study on the status of women faculty in science at MIT. MIT Tech Talk: Faculty Newsletter, 11(4).

(Workplace) Climate, Gender/Sex, Strategies for Improvement

Cundiff, J., Zawadzki, M., Danube, C., & Shields, S. (2014). Using experiential learning to increase the recognition of everyday sexism as harmful: The WAGES intervention. Journal of Social Issues, 70(4), 703-721.