Engineering a gender bias

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In 2015, a Canadian team found female researchers in engineering tend to publish in more influential journals, but their work is less cited.

Now, the same team is preparing to publish evidence that women across science cite their own first-authored papers less than men. This is despite their work being cited at a higher rate by their co-authors.

Gita Ghiasi, a fourth-year PhD candidate in mechanical and industrial engineering at Concordia University, Québec, presented the findings at a science indicators conference in Spain last year. She said the work contributes data to growing evidence that women's scientific contributions are played down or attributed to their male peers.

Her conference paper examined citation data of more than 12 million articles published across disciplines between 2008 and 2014, gathered from the Web of Science.

It found men cite their previous first-authored papers at a 37% higher rate than women. Furthermore, women's papers were self-cited at a higher rate by their immediate co-authors.

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