Gender differences in research productivity: A bibliometric analysis of the Italian academic system

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Abstract

The literature dedicated to the analysis of the difference in research productivity between the sexes tends to agree in indicating better performance for men. Through bibliometric examination of the entire population of research personnel working in the scientific-technological disciplines of Italian university system, this study confirms the presence of significant differences in productivity between men and women. The differences are, however, smaller than reported in a large part of the literature, confirming an ongoing tendency towards decline, and are also seen as more noticeable for quantitative performance indicators than other indicators. The gap between the sexes shows significant sectorial differences. In spite of the generally better performance of men, there are scientific sectors in which the performance of women does not prove to be inferior.

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