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ICON Volume 17, Issue 4: Editorial

EOur Book Review Editor, Michaela Hailbronner, and Associate Editor, Marcela Prieto Rudolphy, join Editor-in-Chief, Gráinne de Búrca, in writing this Editorial.

Gender in academic publishing

In this editorial we raise a question which has been asked by many others before in different contexts[1]: where are the women in academia, and how do those who are there fare?

In asking these questions, and not others, we are very much aware that there is also a great deal to be said about diversity and equity in academia along many other dimensions, including ethnic origin, LGBTQ+ status, disability, social class, and more. With some regret, but also aware of our limitations, on this occasion we address only the issue of women.

Women, as we know, routinely experience violence, discrimination, and hostility which manifest in many ways, structural as well as individual; from the extreme cases of domestic violence, rape, and sexual harassment[2] to the subtler but no less pervasive forms of day-to-day discrimination and belittlement. Academia, although relatively privileged in comparison to other social spheres, is not as different as might be expected in this regard compared to other walks of life. Women within faculties, graduate departments, and colleges face sexual harassment, abuse, and even rape[3] as well as less visible but pervasive forms of gender discrimination, bias, and misogyny.

Women are significantly underrepresented in academic positions,[4] and very starkly so at the higher levels of the academic ladder despite the equal numbers of men and women as high-performing students and at the doctoral level.[5] On top of this, there are many other ways in which the “gender gap” manifests itself. These range from implicit bias in hiring and promotion[6] to the gender pay gap[7] to gendered expectations and judgments in mentorship[8] and teaching evaluations[9] to the fact that women bear a disproportionate burden of the administrative work within universities,[10] as well as of the domestic work at home.[11] As a result, there remain very significant differences in the general experience of men and women working within academia.[12] These differences grow even more stark for women of color and trans-women.[13]

The numbers are depressing. According to a recent study in the United States over a twenty-year period (1993–2013), although the number of women appointed grew at double the rate for men, there are still roughly two tenured men for every tenured woman, and the more prestigious the institution, the higher the ratio.[14] In elite US law schools, the average percentage of tenured women is 28 percent.[15] This is despite the fact that in many countries of the Global North women comprise more than half of the undergraduate student body and nearly half of those with doctoral degrees.[16] The proportion of black women among the tenured full-time faculty in the USA has actually declined from 6.3 percent to 5.8 percent between 1993 and 2013.[17] While one or two jurisdictions may stand out as exceptions,[18] and it has been suggested in particular that the UK has in recent years been improving,[19] the USA is far from an outlier with regard to the dismal numbers. In Germany, for example, women make up only 15.88 percent of tenured faculty.[20] In South Africa, 27.5 percent of professors at universities in 2018 were female.[21]

Studies suggest that a significant proportion of women experience some form of sexual harassment within academic settings.[22] In some disciplines, mothers with young children have been found to be between 33 and 35 percent less likely to get tenure-track jobs than fathers of young children or childless single women.[23] Children, on the other hand, appear to have little effect on the academic careers of men.[24] This partly reflects the fact that women continue to shoulder the primary burden of childcare, even in countries with relatively generous provisions for paid parental leave, such as Germany.[25] Further, many female academics with childcare responsibilities are much less available to travel to conferences or to participate in other networking opportunities which are important to help advance academic careers.

The numbers outlined above are striking particularly since they occur in relatively privileged circles—academia— within allegedly post-patriarchal settings and in many societies that are explicitly committed to gender equality, such as the United States, Australia, and Europe. Indeed they suggest, as Kate Manne has put it, that “even the most equal women” are unequal.[26] And the answer to the question posed at the beginning of this editorial begins to emerge. We do in fact know where a great many of the women in academia are: they are relatively marginalized, overburdened with service, overburdened at home, underpaid, undercited, and in junior or adjunct positions.

Given the degree of difficulty entailed in moving up the academic ladder, we might think it unsurprising that many women seem to end up opting for a better work-life balance, devoting more time to their family lives and eschewing the choices and routes that would make more likely their promotion to senior posts and to leadership positions. And while there is nothing to suggest that such choices may not be intrinsically worthy and the genuinely preferred option of some women, the question as to what balance they would have struck had they lived in a world of genuinely equal opportunities remains only a counterfactual. Prima facie, there is no good reason to think that women would not enjoy the status, power, recognition, and sense of professional fulfillment that comes with occupying positions of prestige in academia just as much as men do. In any event, the issue does certainly raise the question of whether in a more gender-egalitarian world, including at home and in the workplace, the preferred option of both men and women might not be a more balanced life for everyone, if it did not have to come at the expense of occupying second-class status in professional life.

Unsurprisingly, an area of concern to us in recent years at I.CON has been the number and proportion of female authors making submissions to the journal. Not only is the percentage of the overall number of papers submitted to the journal by female authors each year significantly lower than the percentage of submissions by male authors, but the percentage of submissions by women has been declining each year over the past three years. Thirty-four percent of submissions in 2016 were from female authors, but this percentage declined in 2017 to 32 percent and in 2018 it dropped to 30 percent. And while the journal’s rate of acceptance of articles submitted by women during those years turns out to have been higher than the rate of acceptance of articles submitted by men, the end result is that just over one-third of the articles appearing in I.CON from 2016 to 2018 were authored by women.

To us, as members of the I.CON editorial team, this fact was both puzzling and troubling. Given that law school admission numbers in recent years across the United States,[27] Europe,[28] and elsewhere[29] tend to be gender balanced or composed of a higher percentage of women than men, and that in Europe the percentages of male and female doctoral students in law are also relatively evenly balanced,[30] how is it that the percentage of women submitting their work for publication to a journal such as I.CON falls significantly below these levels? The percentages of women entering higher education across many parts of the world in fact are quite impressive.[31] And we know that even though women are poorly represented at the higher career levels within academia, they are quite well represented at the lower levels.[32] Given the preponderance of female law students, the abundance of female doctoral students, and the number of women occupying positions at the lower levels of the academic hierarchy in many countries, why are there not more submissions from female academics to the journal?

Indeed, it seems that the unduly low presence of women in academic publishing is not limited to the relatively low number of submissions to I.CON. Much has also been written about the gendered dimensions of academic publishing in general, particularly but not only in the field of science.[33] There are distinctly gendered patterns of citation, with men citing themselves and the work of other men significantly more than the work of female scholars.[34]

We have pondered our responsibility as journal editors in the face of this persistent and apparently ubiquitous gender bias in academia, which seems to be both reflected in and exacerbated in ways in the context of academic publishing. The question is whether it is possible for us to address some aspects of this bias and in particular the way it manifests itself through the policies and practices of the journal? We take care to invite equal numbers of female and male scholars for the articles we commission and our peer review process is double-blind. In the book review section, we pay attention to the gender of reviewers and to the gender of authors whose books are reviewed. Yet we do not always succeed in ensuring a greater degree of gender equity. In particular, we cannot easily affect the number of submissions to the journal.

Our experiences at I.CON are mirrored by statistics on the gender publication gap in a range of academic fields. Men often publish more than women according to several studies, and at least in some fields they seem to publish in different venues.[35] A recent study examining the publications of psychology professors in Germany suggests that women publish less work in academic journals but publish an equal number of book chapters.[36] We wonder if this is true in law as well, and suspect it may be. A US study conducted ten years ago about female authorship in top law reviews suggests that only 20 percent of articles were authored exclusively by women.[37] Whether women are not submitting in numbers to the top law journals because they do not believe their work is likely to be accepted or for some other reason, or whether they are submitting and being rejected is not clear. Greater transparency and greater availability of gender-segregated data on publishing in journals would be an important step toward understanding what is going on, in order to help begin to address the gender gap. But if we are right about the fact that many women publish more in edited books than in journals, this is likely to be a problem in itself. One of our editors-in-chief, Joseph Weiler, has rightly cautioned young scholars in a previous editorial against falling into the edited-volume trap, counseling them instead to take the time to work on big ideas rather than churning out hastily written chapters.[38] Not all book chapters of course are hastily written, and some if not many may be of high quality. Good edited collections can also represent the kind of collaborative thematic work which some women may choose as a vehicle for developing a collective project. Nevertheless, book chapters are generally less widely read, they are often not readily available electronically in the way that most journal articles are today and hence are less accessible to readers, and count for less in decisions about academic hiring and promotion.

Add to this that young scholars with childcare responsibility–and therefore particularly young female scholars–have a problem of space and time. Working on the big ideas requires hours and ideally days for uninterrupted reading, thinking, and writing.[39] That time is hard to get for all young academics faced with the pressure to prepare and teach new classes, apply for funding, organize conferences, network (and thus participate at least in some edited volumes), and publish (the more the better). But for young scholars with highly uneven childcare responsibilities as well as excessive domestic and administrative burdens, it is nearly impossible to make room for this. In such situations, nothing is easier than to defer working on the big idea and turn instead to the next conference paper or edited chapter in order to have any publications at all to show alongside fulfilling their many other obligations.

And it does not end there. Once a text is written, it needs to be submitted. And when it is finally published, it is also often not enough to let it sit on the shelves and trust it will find readers. Publications need to be shared, promoted, and advertised. Yet, much in the same way as women’s percentage of submissions is lower than their presence in academia, in our experience this gap is also present in regard to marketing their work. Many men have no qualms in writing to ask us to have their forthcoming books reviewed in I.CON, to ask to be nominated for a prize or to engage in other kinds of self-advocacy. We find that women do so much less often. None of this is intended to suggest that all men are inclined to promote their own work or that no female scholars do so. Nevertheless, and without essentializing these differences, there is a distinctly gendered dimension in this regard. Many commentators have written about gender differences in relation to self-promotion in the workplace,[40] but we feel that the point bears repeating in the context of an editorial inviting more women to submit their work for publication.

Should women then learn to shout louder? Again, studies show that it not that easy. Self-assertion does not translate automatically into success for women, in contrast to men, and women often seem not so much to lack confidence as to fear backlash should they behave in the ways that their male counterparts do.[41] Finally, there is a deeper question to be addressed as to why women should adopt prevailing standards of behavior and whether the academy should be a place where all of us are expected to constantly promote ourselves.

It is also the case that there can be negative consequences for women who point out the phenomena we are discussing here such as the gender gap, gender discrimination and inequity, sexism, and misogyny.[42] Speaking out, whether by pointing to these instances or by proposing solutions, may have consequences that are the opposite of what is aimed for, and may well harm women’s academic careers.[43] This “misogynistic backlash”[44] may take different forms, one of which has been the argument (made by some women as well as by men) that women in fact have plenty of opportunities, often precisely because they are women. “Any female” writes Heather Mac Donald “even remotely in the public realm who is not deeply conscious that she has been the ‘beneficiary’ of the pressure to stock conference panels, media slots, and op-ed pages with females is fooling herself. Corporate boards and management seek women with hungry desperation.”[45] “There is not a science faculty or lab in the country” she adds “that is not under relentless pressure from university administrators and the federal government to hire female professors and researchers, regardless of the lack of competitive candidates and the cost to meritocratic standards.”[46]

Are we “fooling ourselves” then? Are universities really “hungry” for women? And are conference panels and universities being stocked by women—and indeed by fortunate and undeserving women, as seems to be the implicit suggestion. The statistics do not bear out such claims. In the first place, it should not be surprising that women are invited to conferences and to contribute to edited volumes, given that they constitute roughly 50 percent of the academic population, at least at the more junior levels. Yet even so, there are still plenty of instances—and readers themselves will no doubt have many examples from their own experience—where there are no women or extremely few women present as speakers.[47] In German legal conferences for example, it is not rare to find that women make up less than 20 percent of the speakers, even in 2019. And the German experience is not an outlier: an array of sources suggest that women are under-represented in conferences generally, especially as keynote speakers or in more senior panels.[48] And it turns out that on the rare occasion when—after decades if not centuries of all-male panels—there are some all-female panels, the backlash is swift.[49]

More importantly, the statistics tell us that only very rarely do women get what matters most: the tenured job. Thus the specific targeting of women for conferences, committees, or edited volumes is really just the flipside of the fact that in the networks in which professors operate, and particularly at the more senior levels, women are so scarce that particular efforts are required to ensure some female representation. Finally, why should women have to contemplate whether they are being invited, as suggested by Mac Donald, just because they are women? How many men have ever asked themselves whether they owe their position or status or the invitation they have received to the fact that they are male? Let us remember that in the 1960s one of the brightest lawyers of her generation, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, was rejected for various law firm and judicial clerkship positions in the USA purely because she was a woman. This means that at least until the 1960s in the west, and no doubt much later than that in many places, the elite employment market has been based on a system of quasi-absolute and entrenched affirmative action for men.

Yet a recurring problem today, as evidenced by Mac Donald’s comments, is that ongoing, important, and overdue efforts to increase the number of women in academia are likely to be perceived by some—perhaps even by many—as somewhat arbitrary, not based on merit. Such efforts may be perceived as undeserved, unjust: they are a “benefit,” an advantage to women, maybe a gift for which women should be grateful. [50] The suspicion is that perhaps women would not otherwise be here, speaking at the conference, writing the op-ed, getting hired, getting promoted. That even though they make up more than 50 percent of law school classes and of doctoral or postdoctoral candidates, and occupy almost that percentage of junior academic positions, any invitation to include a woman on a panel or any promotion to a senior position, or invitation to give a lecture, must in reality be being made only because she is a woman.

It is dispiriting to identify and confront a serious problem and to realize at the same time the great difficulties entailed in trying to solve it. The majority of these difficulties will need to be addressed at the institutional and structural level of faculties, universities, and, ultimately, the state. But we are writing this editorial for a number of reasons, the first of which is to keep the issue alive and at the forefront of our own minds as well as those of our readers. Nothing we have written here is either novel or surprising, but injustices that are not spoken about clearly, loudly, and regularly can easily be overlooked or pushed aside. They can become normal and even entrenched, so much a matter of routine that all that remains is a sense of resignation, a frustrated shrug of the shoulders. To raise the issue is already to take a step, however small, toward addressing it.[51] In this sense, the work of feminist scholars and activists who are too numerous to mention has been crucial in blazing a trail, framing and exposing injustice and bias, creating and heightening awareness, and keeping up the pressure for change.

The second reason we write about it is that there are things each of us can do, even if small, and opportunities that we have to act when we encounter the barriers confronting women in academia. We are calling on each of you as individuals, on all of us as collective actors, as academic colleagues and editors, to do everything within our power to address the various dimensions of the issues that are within reach, intractable and deep-rooted though they may seem to be. We call on women to submit their papers to I.CON. We invite them to inform us when they have published or edited new books that might be of interest to the I.CON readership so that they might be reviewed, and we invite men and women to write reviews of books by female colleagues and to cite them. We call on both women and men to ensure that women sit on panels at our annual conference and to consider mentoring and advising female colleagues, in particular junior colleagues. We call on all of our male readers to reject and to refuse to participate in “manels” (panels which are composed only of male members), and on our female readers to question or challenge the composition of such panels when they see them.

In an attempt to make such efforts easier for all of us, I.CON-S is currently working to provide access to a database of all of its members, which should make it less difficult to find other researchers, including female colleagues and early career researchers, working in the same field.  We aim in future years to work to provide childcare at the I.CON-S annual conference. Indeed, I.CON-S since its foundation has incorporated the principle of gender parity into its governance bodies and structures, and we call on other academic societies, organizations, and journals to do similarly. The Society has also tried to create pathways and opportunities to help advance gender equity within academia by organizing a women’s networking reception each year at its annual conference, although there has sometimes been resistance even to this small step.

We ask all of you to be committed and determined to look hard for female talent when you sit on hiring committees and to structure your academic workplaces, to the extent possible, to be family friendly and not to expose primary caregivers—who are mostly female—to difficult demands (e.g., late classes, meetings, colloquia, and those on weekends). Finally, we call on all readers to help in whatever ways you can to advance gender equity within academia, and to let us know of any other proposals or new ways of addressing the problem. I.CON is here, ready to listen to your suggestions and committed to furthering change!

GdeB, MH, and MPR

[10 Good Reads was previously published on ICONnect here.]

Renewing the I.CON Advisory Board

Several years ago, we took the decision to reshape I.CON’s masthead with a view to creating a tighter and more hands-on Advisory Board. In line with this policy of an active rather than merely ceremonial participation of our Board members in the life of the Journal, we change the composition of our masthead from time to time in order to bring new ideas, voices, representation and energy to the Board.

It is in this light that we welcome the following new members to our Advisory Board: Adem Kassie Abebe, Aileen Kavanagh, Anna Śledzińska-Simon, Catalina Botero Marino, Christopher McCrudden, James Gathii, Gila Stopler, Magdalena Correa Henao, Marian Ahumada, Marta Cartabia, Menaka Guruswamy, Tarun Khaitan and Wojciech Sadurski.

We extend our warmest thanks to the following Board members for their dedicated service to the Journal and welcome them to our Emeritus Board: Sujit Choudhry, Lech Garlicki, Vicki Jackson, Mattias Kumm, H. Kwasi Prempeh, Cheryl Saunders and Mark Tushnet.

In this issue

Our last issue of 2019 opens with a special section honoring Jürgen Habermas on his 90th birthday. This section contains contributions by Seyla Benhabib, Jean L. Cohen, Oliver Gerstenberg, Frank I. Michelman, Cheryl Misak, Vlad Perju, and Michel Rosenfeld.

Our Articles section features two papers. First, Kai Möller discusses the moral foundations of the culture of justifying each act of the state. Second, Sergio Verdugo explains how constitutional insurance can be undermined, using the experience of the Bolivian 2009 Constitution as a case study.

The Critical Review of Governance section also features two contributions. The first article, authored by Tarunabh Khaitan and Jane Calderwood Norton, distinguishes between the right to freedom of religion and the right against religious discrimination, each right having a separate normative justification. Our next issue (18:1) will include a follow-up article by the same authors in which they examine the doctrinal implications of distinguishing between those two rights. The second contribution, by Farrah Ahmed, Richard Albert, and Adam Perry, argues that Commonwealth courts should sometimes enforce constitutional conventions. This article expands on the argument that these authors made in a related article in our previous issue (17:3)

The Symposium section includes seven papers on the “New Dominium Constitutionalism.” The symposium opens with an introduction by Mara Malagodi, Luke McDonagh, and Thomas PoolePeter C. Oliver then offers a nuanced conceptual and historical perspective on the idea of “Dominion status.” Luke McDonagh examines the Irish era of 1922-1937 and explains how Ireland pushed against the limits of its Dominion status. Rohit De focuses on India’s Dominion period, Mara Malagodi discusses how the legacy of Dominion status can explain authoritarianism in Pakistan, and Rehan Abeyratne identifies sovereignty-related concerns regarding fundamental rights and constitutional structure in judicial decisions from Ceylon’s Dominion period. Finally, Mara Malagodi, Luke McDonagh and Thomas Poole close the symposium by using the insights of the case studies to identify a model of transitional constitutionalism

The I.CON: Debate! section deepens the discussion on the Catalan separatist movement that began in our previous issue (17:3). In the current issue, Joseph H. H. Weiler comments on the contributions by Hèctor López Bofill and Antonio Bar, and develops the idea that Spain is a “nation of nations.” Antonio Bar and Hèctor López Bofill then reply to his comment.

In the Book Review section, Itamar Mann looks at the relationship of Zionism and Human Rights through the lens of Loeffler’s Rooted Cosmopolitans, Sfard’s The Wall and the Gate and Sapir’s The Israeli Constitution, arguing ultimately for a shared progressive agenda in Israeli constitutional politics. In her review essay, Katalin Kelemen examines the growing field of constitutional reasoning as it emerges in Jakab’s European Constitutional Language and Jakab, Dyevre and Itzcovich’sedited volume Comparative Constitutional Reasoning covering a range of European jurisdictions.

JHHW and GdeB


[1] See Christine Bell & Catherine O’Rourke, Does Feminism Need a Theory of Transitional Justice? An Introductory Essay, 1 Int’l J. Transitional Just. 23 (2007); Hilary Charlesworth, Feminist Methods in International Law, 93 Am. J. Int’l L. 379 (1999).

[2] See John Archer, Sex Differences in Physically Aggressive Acts between Heterosexual Partners: A Meta-Analytic Review, 126(5) Psychol. Bull. 651 (2000).

[3] Diane Rosenfeld, Uncomfortable Conversations: Confronting the Reality of Target Rape on Campus, 128(8) Harv. L. Rev. 359 (2015), https://harvardlawreview.org/2015/06/uncomfortable-conversations-confronting-the-reality-of-target-rape-on-campus/; Robin G. Nelson, Julienne N. Rutherford, Katie Hinde, & Kathryn B. H. Clancy, Signaling Safety: Characterizing Fieldwork Experiences and Their Implications for Career Trajectories,” 119(4) Am. Anthropologist 715 (2017); David Cantor et al., Report on the AAU Campus Climate Survey on Sexual Assault and Sexual Misconduct 31 (2015); David Batty, Sally Weale, & Caroline Bannock, Sexual Harassment “at Epidemic Levels” in UK Universities, The Guardian, Mar. 5, 2017; Sally Weale & David Batty, Sexual Harassment of Students by University Staff Hidden by Non-Disclosure Agreements, The Guardian, Aug. 26, 2016.

[4] https://www.catalyst.org/research/women-in-academia/; see also Anirudda Ghosh & Shreya Tandon, A Lot Still Needs to Be Done to Address the Gender Gap in Academia, https://thewire.in/education/women-in-academia-gender-pay-gap.

[5] Troy Vettese, Sexism in the Academy: Women’s Narrowing Path to Tenure (2019), https://nplusonemag.com/issue-34/essays/sexism-in-the-academy/.

[6] Jadranka Gvozdanović & Katrien Maes, Implicit Bias in Academia: A Challenge to the Meritocratic Principle and to Women’s Careers—And What to Do about It, LERU Advice Paper No. 23 (2018), https://www.leru.org/files/Publications/Implicit-bias-in-academia-Full-Paper.pdf.

[7] For the situation in the USA and the UK, respectively, see Joshua Hatch, Gender Pay Gap Persists across Faculty Ranks (March 22, 2017), https://www.chronicle.com/article/Gender-Pay-Gap-Persists-Across/239553 (using data from the latest US Education Department data); and Rachel Hall, Gender Pay Gap in Academia Will Take 40 years to Close, https://www.theguardian.com/higher-education-network/2017/may/26/gender-pay-gap-in-academia-will-take-40-years-to-close (using research gathered by the university and College Union).

[8] Amani El-Alayli, Ashley A. Hansen-Brown, & Michelle Ceynar, Dancing Backward in High Heels: Female Professors Experience More Work Demands and Special Favor Requests, Particularly from Academically Entitled Students, 79 Sex Roles 136 (2018).

[9] David A. M.  et al., Mitigating Gender Bias in Student Evaluations of Teaching, 14 PLoS One (2019), https://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0216241.

[10] Cassandra Guarino & Victor Borden, Faculty Service Loads and Gender: Are Women Taking Care of the Academic Family, 58 Res. in Higher Educ. 672 (2017). See also https://www.insidehighered.com/news/2018/01/10/study-finds-female-professors-experience-more-work-demands-and-special-favor?fbclid=IwAR0mTYH_O8eOi5blSqO7joj1lvDX9bbv8xQQQjSZhUEPVbirs9n6PFfyCLg.

[11] https://www.nytimes.com/2019/05/04/opinion/sunday/men-parenting.html

[12] Yulia Nesterova & Liz Jackson, Gender Inequality in Universities (2018), https://impakter.com/gender-inequality-universities/.

[13] This is the well-known phenomenon of intersectionality. See Kimberlé W. Crenshaw, Mapping the Margins: Intersectionality, Identity Politics, and Violence Against Women of Color, 43 Stan. L. Rev. 43:1241 (1991). 

[14] https://nplusonemag.com/issue-34/essays/sexism-in-the-academy/#fn38-11214, quoting Martin J. Finkelstein, Valierie M. Conley, & Jack H. Schuster, Taking the Measure of Faculty Diversity, 1 Advancing Higher Educ. 4 (2016); Darrin Gilkerson, Alaisha Sharma, & Grace Zhang, Where Are Harvard’s Female Professors https://harvardpolitics.com/harvard/gender-parity/.

[15] Minna J. Kotkin, Of Authorship and Audacity: An Empirical Study of Gender Disparity and Privilege in the Top Ten Law Reviews, 31(4) Women’s Rts. L. Rptr. 384 (2009); Elizabeth Mertz et al., After Tenure: Post-Tenure Law Professors in the United States, The American Bar Foundation, available at http://www.americanbarfoundation.org/uploads/cms/documents/after_tenure_report-_final-_abf_4.1.pdf

[16] https://nplusonemag.com/issue-34/essays/sexism-in-the-academy/#rf9-11214, quoting Shina Caroline Lynn Kamerlin, Where Are the Female Science Professors? A Personal Perspective (F1000Research 5 at 1224) (2016). For another example of this upside-down pyramid, in this case, for medical students, see T. J. Ley & B. H. Hamilton, The Gender Gap in NIH Grant Applications, 322(5907) Sci. 1472 (2008). A similar distribution is found by Kristen Renwick Monroe et al., Gender Equality in the Ivory Tower, and How Best to Achieve It, 47(2) PS: Pol. Sci. & Pol. 419 (2014). For an overview of the German numbers of women with doctoral degrees in law and economics, see information provided online by Gesis, Leibniz Institut für Sozialwissenschaften, Kompetenzzentrum Frauen in Wissenschaft und Forschung, available at https://www.gesis.org/cews/unser-angebot/informationsangebote/statistiken/thematische-suche/detailanzeige/article/frauenanteile-an-den-promotionen-und-habilitationen-nach-faechergruppen-2016/.

[17] Martin J. Finkelstein, Valierie M. Conley, & Jack H. Schuster, Taking the Measure of Faculty Diversity, 1 Advancing Higher Educ. 4, 13 (2016).

[18] Portugal seems to be one of the rare jurisdictions in which the number of female academics is almost equal to the number of males: https://www.eui.eu/ProgrammesAndFellowships/AcademicCareersObservatory/CareerComparisons/GenderComparisons. And Jindal law school in India claims pride of place in this respect also: https://www.legallyindia.com/lawschools/jindal-world-s-first-law-school-to-have-more-women-than-men-faculty-highlights-embarrassing-global-gender-balance-in-academia-20140905-5023.

[19] According to the Academic Careers Observatory at the European University Institute in Florence: “In other cases, it is suggested that women are quickly increasing, such as in the UK where there are some estimate that by 2020, women could account for the majority of all academics in the country. This, however, is not very certain since a recent gender survey of the UK professiorate from 2013 shows that while, on overall, one in five professors in the UK is female, several universities are falling well short of that low benchmark.” https://www.eui.eu/ProgrammesAndFellowships/AcademicCareersObservatory/CareerComparisons/GenderComparisons.

[20] Ute Sacksofsky & Carolin Stix, Daten und Fakten zur Repräsentanz von Frauen in der Rechtswissenschaft (3d ed.) (Nov. 9, 2018), available at https://www.jura.uni-frankfurt.de/73356125/Daten_und_Fakten_zur_Repr%C3%A4sentanz_von_Frauen_in_der_Rechtswissenschaft_Sacksofsky_Stix_2018.pdf.

[21] Edwin Naidu, Universities Body to Probe Gender Imbalance at the Top, https://www.universityworldnews.com/post.php?story=20180725103923330.

[22] https://nplusonemag.com/issue-34/essays/sexism-in-the-academy/#fn34-11214.

[23] Nicholas Wolfinger, For Female Scientists, There’s no Good Time to Have Children, The Atlantic, July 29, 2013.

[24] Id.

[25] Only about one-third of all men in German take parental leave and of those who do, less than half take more than two months (which is a requirement for couples who take fourteen months of parental leave (rather than the maximum twelve) between them). See Bundesministerium für Familie, Frauen, Senioren und Jugend, Väterreport 2018, available at https://www.bmfsfj.de/blob/127268/2098ed4343ad836b2f0534146ce59028/vaeterreport-2018-data.pdf.

[26] Kate Manne, Down Girl: The Logic of Misogyny 297 (2018).

[27] See https://www.enjuris.com/students/law-school-gender-ratio-2017.html.

[28] Yvonne Galligan et al., Mapping the Representation of Women and Men in Legal Professions Across the EU 73 (European Parliament, Policy Department for Citizens’ Rights and Constitutional Affairs, August 2017).

[29] Singapore and South Africa in particular appear to score well on student gender balance in universities more generally, https://www.timeshighereducation.com/student/news/eight-world-leading-universities-5050-gender-balance.

[30] Galligan et al., supra note 29, at 74.

[31] The annual Global Gender Gap report contains an analysis and ranking of 149 countries, which amongt other things attempts to measure progress on gender parity in education: http://www3.weforum.org/docs/WEF_GGGR_2018.pdf. We have not found precise statistics on the gender balance in universities for other continents, although some attempts to measure gender balance in universities worldwide appear to show that South American institutions perform well while Asian institutions do not. See annual Leiden ranking, https://www.leidenranking.com/, and the discussion here: https://www.nature.com/articles/d41586-019-01642-4. On the other hand, it seems that the algorithm used to detect gender by surname may not be accurate for Asia.

[32] See https://www.catalyst.org/research/women-in-academia/, and text accompanying supra note 4.

[33] Jamie Lundine et al., The Gendered System of Academic Publishing, 391 The Lancet 1754 (2018), and Gender Bias in Academia, 393 The Lancet 741 (2018).

[34] Michelle L. Dion, Jane Lawrence Sumner, and Sara McLaughlin Mitchell, Gendered Citation Patterns across Political Science and Social Science Methodology Fields, 26 Pol. Analysis 312 (2018). See also Molly M. King et al., Men Set Their Own Cites High: Gender and Self-citation across Fields and over Time, 3 Socius: Soc. Res. for a Dynamic World 1 (2017). In one law-specific study of the impact of gender on citations over a particular time period, the authors found that female authors were more cited than male authors. However, they counted as female-authored any papers that were co-authored by a male and a female, and noted that female authors more often co-authored with male authors than vice versa: Christopher A. Cotropia & Lee Petherbridge, Gender Disparity in Law Review Citation Rates, 59 Wm. & Mary L. Rev. 771 (2018). For discussion of their study, see https://prawfsblawg.blogs.com/prawfsblawg/2015/06/gender-and-legal-scholarship.html.

[35] Mark Lutter & Martin Schröder, Is There a Motherhood Penalty in Academia? The Gendered Effect of Children on Academic Publications, MPIfG Discussion Paper No. 19/2 (2019), with further references.

[36] Sabrina J. Mayer & Justus M. K. Rathmann, How Does Research Productivity Relate to Gender? Analyzing Gender Differences for Multiple Publication Dimensions, 117 Scientometrics 1663 (2018). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11192-018-2933-1.

[37] Kotkin, supra note 16, at 398.

[38] Joseph H. H. Weiler, Editorial—On My Way Out—Advice to Young Scholars II: Career Strategy and the Publication Trap, 26(4) Eur. J. Int’l L. 795 (2015).

[39] See also Brigid Schulte, A Woman’s Greatest Enemy? A Lack of Time to Herself, Guardian, July 21, 2019, https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2019/jul/21/woman-greatest-enemy-lack-of-time-themselves, echoing Virginia Woolf, A Room of One’s Own (1929).

[40] For a summary of some interesting recent studies on this question, see Stephanie Thompson, A Lack of Confidence Isn’t What’s Holding Back Working Women, The Atlantic, Sept. 20, 2018, https://www.theatlantic.com/family/archive/2018/09/women-workplace-confidence-gap/570772/.

[41] Id.

[42] On the idea of misogyny as a self-masking phenomenon and of misogynistic backlash, see Manne, supra note 27.

[43] “At Irvine, many female scholars “feared backlash and retribution if they agitated openly for change, so they rejected overt collective activism in favor of more subtle, nonthreatening collective actions.” In a survey of female scholars at US medical schools, many said they suffered within a climate of fear created by sexist heads of departments who took “punitive actions against members who disagreed with them and by advancing the careers of those who supported their point of view.” Numerous studies analyzed for this review noted that their interview subjects asked for anonymity for fear of reprisal.” See https://nplusonemag.com/issue-34/essays/sexism-in-the-academy/#fn34-11214.

[44] Manne, supra note 27, at 281–300.

[45] Heather MacDonald, The UCSB Solipsists, National Review, June 1, 2014, quoted in Manne, supra note 27, at 38.

[46] Id.

[47] Arturo Casadevall & Jo Handelsman, The Presence of Female Conveners Correlates with a Higher Proportion of Female Speakers at Scientific Symposia, 5(1) mBio e00846-13 (2014).

[48] Jeffrey Kosseff, Guys, We Need to Put a Stop to the “Manel,” available at https://iapp.org/news/a/guys-we-all-need-to-put-a-stop-to-the-manel/; Cooper M. Farr et al., Addressing the Gender Gap in Distinguished Speakers at Professional Ecology Conferences, 65(5) BioScience 464 (2017); Heather L. Ford et al., Gender Inequity in Speaking Opportunities at the American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting, 9 Nature Comm. 1358 (2018).

[49] https://www.pcma.org/backlash-all-women-speaker-lineup-science-conference/.

[50] Again, this can be understood as part of the “misogynistic backlash” described by Manne, supra note 27.

[51] Isabelle Régner et al., Committees with Implicit Biases Promote Fewer Women When They Do Not Believe Gender Bias Exists, Nature Hum. Behav. 1 (2019), https://www.nature.com/articles/s41562-019-0686-3

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Published on January 23, 2020
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