Promoting gender equality in the science and innovation system is one of the priorities of the Ministry of Science and Innovation, which has launched measures to identify and eliminate the inequalities that persist in these areas.
The Spanish Foundation for Science and Technology (FECYT) – an agency under the Ministry of Science and Innovation – has published the study ‘The presence of women in Spanish scientific production’, which for the first time provides data identifying the presence of female researchers in Spanish scientific production published between 2014 and 2018 in leading international journals. The study reveals that 48% of Spanish scientific production in Web of Science (WOS), the source of this study, includes a female author, but only 20% of female researchers lead publications.
According to the results of the study, 43% of the Spanish research community that publishes in WOS are women. WOS is one of the world’s leading databases for bibliographic references and citations of periodicals. The report also shows that 12% of Spanish scientific production involving women is among the most cited in the world, just one percentage point difference from the Spanish average of 13%.
The average Spanish scientific output in international collaboration stands at 53%, a figure that drops to 48% for output involving female researchers. However, this figure has been increasing year after year.
In total, 304,165 documents were analysed in the study, identifying 145,276 researchers from Spanish scientific institutions. The thematic categories with the highest number of documents in scientific production in which women participate are Environmental Sciences; Materials Science; Biochemistry and Molecular Biology; Food Science; Physics-Chemistry; Chemistry; Pharmacology and Pharmacy; and Neurosciences. There are fewer women in Engineering and Mathematics.
Promoting gender equality in science
Promoting gender equality in the science and innovation system is one of the priorities of the Ministry of Science and Innovation, which has implemented measures to identify and eliminate the inequalities that persist in these areas through studies such as the report ‘Scientists in Figures 2021’ or the report ‘Situation of young female researchers in Spain’. To give visibility to the work of leading women scientists, the Ministry has developed initiatives such as the ‘Innovative Women Scientists’ platform and is currently working on new actions such as the creation of a gender equality label in R&D&I or the design of a mentoring programme with a gender focus aimed at young women researchers.
Likewise, the Ministry of Science and Innovation is part of the ‘STEAM Alliance for female talent. Girls on a scientific footing’, an initiative of the Ministry of Education and Vocational Training aimed at fostering STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics in connection with the Arts and Humanities) vocations in girls and young women.