You Research Like a Girl: Gendered Research Agendas and Their Implications

Ellen M. Key, Jane Lawrence Sumner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

34 Scopus citations


Political science, like many disciplines, has a leaky-pipeline problem. Women are more likely to leave the profession than men. Those who stay are promoted at lower rates. Recent work has pointed toward a likely culprit: women are less likely to submit work to journals. Why? One answer is that women do not believe their work will be published. This article asks whether women systematically study different topics than men and whether these topics may be less likely to appear in top political science journals. To answer this question, we analyzed the content of dissertation abstracts. We found evidence that some topics are indeed gendered. We also found differences in the representation of women's and men's topics in the pages of the top journals. This suggests that research agendas may indeed be gendered and that variation in research topic might be to blame for the submission gap.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)663-668
Number of pages6
JournalPS - Political Science and Politics
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 1 2019

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
Copyright © American Political Science Association 2019.


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