OCT 21, 2020
This study tracked female authorship trends in ophthalmic literature over a 5-year period.
Researchers used a gender inference tool to analyze the gender of the first and last authors from articles published in 4 general and 5 subspecialty ophthalmology journals between January 2015 and December 2019.
Of the 17,100 articles and 31,591 authors analyzed, 8,775 were unique male authors and 5,224 were unique female authors. Overall, women accounted for 32% of authors and were more often listed as first author than last author (38% vs. 27%; P<0.001). During the study period, the proportion of female first authors significantly increased for all journals and subspecialty journals (both P=0.007), but not general journals (P=0.07). The proportion of female last authors significantly increased for general, subspecialty and all journals (P=0.007, 0.025 and 0.025, respectively).
The gender interpretation software used may be flawed. The analysis was limited to the last 5 years and only included U.S. ophthalmology journals.
Female authorship increased in both first and last author positions over 5 years, but gender disparities remain.