WP:clubhouse? An exploration of Wikipedia's gender imbalance

Shyong K. Lam, Anuradha Uduwage, Zhenhua Dong, Shilad Sen, David R. Musicant, Loren G Terveen, John Riedl

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review

149 Scopus citations


Wikipedia has rapidly become an invaluable destination for millions of information-seeking users. However, media reports suggest an important challenge: only a small fraction of Wikipedia's legion of volunteer editors are female. In the current work, we present a scientific exploration of the gender imbalance in the English Wikipedia's population of editors. We look at the nature of the imbalance itself, its effects on the quality of the encyclopedia, and several conflict-related factors that may be contributing to the gender gap. Our findings confirm the presence of a large gender gap among editors and a corresponding gender-oriented disparity in the content of Wikipedia's articles. Further, we find evidence hinting at a culture that may be resistant to female participation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Number of pages10
StatePublished - 2011
Event7th Annual International Symposium on Wikis and Open Collaboration, WikiSym 2011 - Mountain View, CA, United States
Duration: Oct 3 2011Oct 5 2011


Other7th Annual International Symposium on Wikis and Open Collaboration, WikiSym 2011
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityMountain View, CA


  • Wikipedia
  • collaboration
  • content coverage
  • gender gap


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