Gender Representation on Journal Editorial Boards in the Mathematical Sciences (2016)

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The degree of underrepresentation on mathematical sciences journal editorial boards is even more severe than in the field at large. Women are not represented in editorships in the same proportion that they are represented in the mathematics field. Editors possess influence over the research conducted and how communities receive this research. If women are underrepresented on editorial boards, it means that the field is being deprived of women’s contributions and perspectives. In addition, more diverse groups do a better job of making decisions and contributing creative ideas, suggesting the importance of diverse editorial boards. The presence of women on editorial boards also contributes to the role-model effect, encouraging younger women to pursue mathematics and academia. Given this information, we think it’s important to consider why exactly women are not being represented. Are women faculty not being sufficiently considered for editorial boards? Are they being asked to serve but choosing not to? Mathematical sciences journals may benefit from paying more attention to these questions as each journal is unique.