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Negating the Gender Citation Advantage in Political Science

  • Amy L. Atchison (a1)


Open-access (OA) advocates have long promoted OA as an egalitarian alternative to traditional subscription-based academic publishing. The argument is simple: OA gives everyone access to high-quality research at no cost. In turn, this should benefit individual researchers by increasing the number of people reading and citing academic articles. As the OA movement gains traction in the academy, scholars are investing considerable research energy to determine whether there is an OA citation advantage—that is, does OA increase an article’s citation counts? Research indicates that it does. Scholars also explored patterns of gender bias in academic publishing and found that women are cited at lower rates in many disciplines. Indeed, in many disciplines, men enjoy a significant and positive gender citation effect (GCE) compared to their female colleagues. This article combines these research areas to determine whether the OA citation advantage varies by gender. Using Wilcoxon-Mann-Whitney (WMW) tests, the nonparametric analog to the independent samples T-test, I conclude that OA benefits male and female political scientists at similar rates. Thus, OA negates the gender citation advantage that typically accrues to male political scientists.

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