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Gendered Science in the 21st Century: Productivity Puzzle 2.0?

Laurie A. Schintler, Connie L. McNeely


The notion of the ‘productivity puzzle’, referring particularly to gender disparities in science and technology publication rates, raises a variety of critical issues for understanding related workforce development and capacity.  However, such issues typically are framed relative to an increasingly outdated cultural and technological landscape in which scientific productivity is viewed principally as an outcome.  We argue instead that characterizing scientific productivity as a multifaceted, dynamic, highly networked, and interactive process, rather than just an outcome, might provide greater insight into the gendered nature of science and lead to a re-framing of the gender-differentiated productivity puzzle.  By rethinking how we engage related questions, we might gain ground on explaining and unraveling the productivity puzzle in ways that will benefit the scientific enterprise and society in general.


scientific productivity; STEM; gender; productivity puzzle

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