VERA Miriam Corina
congresos y reuniones científicas
Visibility and representativity of women in South american academia: the case of herpetology.
BESSA CARLA; CASAGRANDA DOLORES; CHULIVER PEREYRA MARIANA; DUPORT BRU ANA SOFIA; FRATANI DA SILVA, JESSICA; FERRARO DAIANA; GABRIELA FONTANARROSA; GROSSO JIMENA; MEDINA REGINA GABRIELA; SALICA MARIA JOSE; PEREYRA LAURA; SCHNEIDER ROSIO; SEHMAN ROMINA; VERA, MIRIAM CORINA; VICENTE NATALIN
Workshop; workshop on skills for young scientists; 2019
ICTP South American Institute for Fundamental Research UNESP
Gender inequalities in science are globally well-known. Women scientists receive fewer opportunities and less recognition and are underrepresented in leadership roles in comparison to men. Two main concerns in gender balance diagnosis are representativeness and visibility?i.e., proportion of women at given subset of science community, and their placement at hierarchical positions, respectively. Herpetology, the scientific study of frogs and reptiles, has a large researchers community in South America. The two larger scientific societies in South America, the Argentine Society of Herpetology (AHA) and the Brazilian Society of Herpetology (SBH), were founded in the ?80. Both societies organize periodic meetings and are editors of specialized journals: Cuadernos de Herpetología (AHA) and the South American Journal of Herpetology (SBH). In this work, we inquire on the representativity and visibility of female academics in a South american context, emphasizing on the Argentine community by compiling gender distinguished data from: 1) current membership in the AHA; 2) participation in meetings of the AHA during 20 years; 3) administrative position of AHA members; 4) authorship in published papers in both: Cuadernos de Herpetología (since 1999 until 2019) and the South American Journal of Herpetology (since 2006 until 2019); and 5) leader of the laboratory where Argentine herpetologists work. We analyzed these data for trends and statistics, applying mixed mathematical strategies including descriptive statistics and network analysis. Among the main results, we found that notwithstanding the AHA membership and the ordinary participation (short talks and posters) in the annual meeting of the society are equally distributed by gender, the female participation in expositions by invitation (master lectures and symposia) fall to a 37%, which meant 20% less time?five days less?of women visibility in meetings. Regarding women representativity and visibility in administrative position of AHA, although more than 50% of the AHA administrative positions were occupied by women, no woman was president in the 36 years of the society, just one woman was vice-president of the society. More than 70% of the editors and reviewers of Cuadernos de Herpetología were men and just a woman was director of the journal. Gender distribution patterns in publications in both journals (Cuadernos de Herpetologia and South American Journal of Herpetology) show a common schema: 40% of the authors are females; 55 % of the papers are mixed, 35 % of the papers are men exclusive and less than 10% are women exclusive. In gender mixed papers, a 60% of the first authors are men, and the network analysis showed that those papers tend to reunite more men as co-authors developing male nodes than papers led by women, where man-women participation tends to be more balanced. The approximately 80% of institutions that reunite most of the herpetologist have a men as head of the laboratories. Given the above, we concluded that gender gap in hierarchical and peer recognition positions (i.e., society board, lab head, journal director, editor and reviewer and simposium guest speakers) is not a consequence of a lower female participation in the community but a clear pattern of sticky floor, in tune with observations in other STEM areas. Diagnostic analysis like this are a wake-up call for institutions to promote actions and policies to achieve a true gender equality.