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Episodes 2023; 46(4): 509-520

Published online December 1, 2023


Copyright © International Union of Geological Sciences.

Gender diversity in editorial boards of scientific journals. Some earth science case studies for a geoethical reflection

Maria Dolores Pereira

Department of Geology, Universidad de Salamanca, Plaza de la Merced s/n, 37008 Salamanca, Spain

Correspondence to:E-mail: mdp@usal.es

Received: October 27, 2022; Revised: December 29, 2022; Accepted: December 29, 2022

This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0) which permits unrestricted non-commercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Any scientific area can benefit from the contributions of a diverse society. Upon reflection, many notable achievements have been made by women to the advancement of science, but they were not highlighted enough. Such was the case of Hedy Lamarr, who co-authored the development of a radio guidance system (the start of the present Wi-Fi) or Rosalind Franklin, who contributed enormously to the discovery of the structure of DNA. But they were shadowed by their male counterparts. The same happens today. The ratio male/female in most important scientific recognitions, like the Nobel prize, is very illustrative. This situation also applies to the inclusion of female researchers in journal editorial boards, where the main process of manuscripts management takes place. Steps have been done to correct the disparity, but actions need to be reviewed. This paper aims to compare the evolution of gender diversity within the editorial boards of six quality scholarly journals dealing with Earth Sciences to see how gender diversity has been considered in the update of board panels along the years. The conclusions are that there is a long way to go to reach gender diversity, but also that the implementation of constructive changes may trigger a definitive alteration in these trends through good practices.