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sheMD Journal Club

Sex Distribution of Editorial Board Members Among Emergency Medicine Journals

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Our sheMD Editors-in-Chief not only run sheMD (and work as Emergency Medicine Physicians), but they also do gender-based research!

Their recent article "Sex Distribution of Editorial Board Members Among Emergency Medicine Journals" looks at the gender makeup of the head of Emergency Medicine Journals!

We found a disparity among emergency medicine journals’ editors in chief and editorial board members.
Of 46 total editors in chiefs, only 4 (8.7%) were women.
Of 1,477 total editorial board members, only 241 (16.3%) were women.
Some journals had 0 women on the editorial board.
Of 10 total resident or fellow editors, 70% (7/10) WERE women.

This phenomena has been shown in other specialties, but this publication was the first in Emergency Medicine.

The disparities seen in editorial boards are important, because it has been shown that female first-author papers tend to be rejected at a higher rate than male first-author papers! A study from 2010, "Gender aspects in medical publication: the Wiener Klinische Wochenschrift" found that submissions with female first authors had a higher rate of rapid rejection and lower overall acceptance rates than those first-authored by men. They found this was mitigated when reviewers were blinded to the author names. Another study, "Double-blind review favours increased representation of female authors" in 2008 reported a 7.8% increase in articles by female first authors and a 33% increase in the overall representation of female authors when the journal blinded author identity.

We believe including women on editorial boards may help narrow the publication gender gap in medicine, and we are so excited to see women in training (residents/fellows) getting involved on editorial boards!

We want to encourage you to get involved!
Even if you don't feel ready- put your name out there!
Get involved in the peer review process!
Help narrow the publication gap!

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