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Influence of the first-mover advantage on the gender disparities in physics citations

Mounting evidence suggests that science and engineering fields suffer from gender biases. In this paper, we study the physics community, a discipline where women are still under-represented and gender disparities persist. To reveal such inequalities, we perform a paper matching analysis using a robust statistical similarity metric.

Our analyses indicate that women’s papers tend to have lower visibility in the global citation network, a phenomenon significantly influenced by the temporal aspects of scientific production. Within pairs of similar papers, the authors that publish first tend to obtain more citations. From the group perspective, men have cumulative historical advantages due to women joining the field later and at a slower rate. Altogether, these results indicate that the first-mover advantage plays a crucial role in the emergence of gender disparities in citations of women-authored papers in the physics community.


H. Kong, S. Martin-Gutierrez, F. Karimi, Influence of the first-mover advantage on the gender disparities in physics citations, Communications Physics 5 (243) (2022)

Samuel Martin Gutierrez, researcher at the Complexity Science Hub © Verena Ahne

Samuel Martin-Gutierrez

Fariba Karimi, Faculty Member at the Complexity Science Hub © Matthias Raddant

Fariba Karimi

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