CSWMG Report on 2000 and 2001 Journal Surveys

Committee on the Status of Women and Minority Groups Report on 2000-2001 Journal Surveys
Division of Professional Matters of the American Philological Association

Please note that the supporting documentation for this report appears in linked tables that will appear in resizable pop-up windows so that they may be consulted alongside the report; these pop-up windows should be closed as you finish consulting each table. The full report, plus Table 1: 2000, Table 2: 2001, and all the longitudinal figures, are also available as Adobe Acrobat files that may be downloaded and printed; it is recommended that you use your printer's "Print as Image" option. All the CSWMG journal survey results since the 1970s have now been entered into an Excel spreadsheet, so we will be able to trace some trends in the field longitudinally, as demonstrated in some of the figures attached to this report.

One of the annual charges of the Committee on the Status of Women and Minority Groups (CSWMG) is to survey journals in the area of Classical Studies, especially with an eye to encouraging the increasing participation of women and minorities in journal publication. Women have made slow but steady progress in the years we have been studying the statistics. While this trend has been a constant refrain of our survey, it is certainly not the only result we need to study. On the other hand, the publication gains for women do represent one of the most significant developments since the CSWMG first began compiling complete statistics from many of the same journals in the late 1970s. The Committee is pleased to continue this effort and now, with this report, to move it into the twenty-first century.

Since journal submissions always vary from year to year, the CSWMG reminds readers to beware of drawing conclusions about any individual journal from the results of a single survey. Careful tracking of these statistics over time is what has made it possible to understand incremental changes with the kind of precision that overrules mere anecdote.

The statistical material in this survey is fairly easily to digest. Table 1 and Table 2 contain information about journal practices in 2000 and 2001. Footnotes at the bottom of each table offer further information about any exceptions or extenuating circumstances. For example, readers will note that certain journals did not submit figures for the 2000 survey (Table 1), though they are represented in the 2001 survey (Table 2). Other details concerning transitions within a journal’s staff, information about the number and gender of referees for articles for a particular journal, or special circumstances such as a journal’s need to publish conference proceedings are contained in the footnotes. CSWMG is happy to announce the addition of a new journal, Syllecta Classica, included in the 2001 journal survey for the first time.

The total number of submissions by women in the 2000 survey was 172 (33%), as opposed to 351 (67%) by men. In the 2001 survey those figures jumped to 190.93 submissions for women (still 33% of the total) and 391.06 submissions for men (still 67%). The total number of acceptances of articles by women in 2000 was 71.6 (34%) and in 2001 the number was 87.1 (33%). The total number of acceptances of articles by men in 2000 was 136.3 (66%) and in 2001, 177.9 (67%). The acceptance rate for women in 2000 was 42% and in 2001, 46%. The acceptance rate for women is higher than the percentage of total submissions by women. Part of this increase, of course, is due to the four additional journals represented in the 2001 survey. The acceptance rate for men was 39% in 2000 and 45% in 2001. The percentage of reviews by women (29%) and men (71%) remained the same for both the 2000 and 2001 surveys. The percentage of women referees went up by 2% (37% in 2000 survey and 39% in 2001 survey), which again might be due to the extra journals included in the 2001 survey. The number of women serving on editorial boards also went up from 62 (36% in 2000 survey) to 75 (37% in 2001 survey). Six journals reported that their editor-in-chief was a woman.

According to the CSWMG report on the 1997-2001 departmental surveys, the mean percentage of women on Classics faculties during this five-year period was 36% (broken down into 38% in BA-granting departments, 35% in MA-granting departments, and 32% in PhD departments). The mean percentage of women in various aspects of journal publication for these two survey years is almost the same (broken down into 34% of women who are accepted for publication in 2000 and 33% in 2001; 29% of reviews by women in 2000 and 29% in 2001; 37% of referees who are women in 2000 and 39% in 2001; and 36% of editorial board members who are women in 2000 and 37% in 2001). No journal reported an editor belonging to a minority group for either the 2000 or 2001 surveys. While the percentage of editorial board members who are ethnic minorities went from 0.58% in the 2000 survey to 2.44% in the 2001 survey, it is clear that this is an area of utmost concern to all of us. 2.44% is very close to the dismally low mean percentage of minorities on Classics faculties, which was 2.5% according to the 1997-2001 department surveys.

Figures 1-5 are charts offering broader, more long-term analyses of journal practices and trends going as far back as the 1970s. Information from the twelve journals for which we have relatively complete statistics for the period between 1977-2001 are represented in these figures: American Journal of Ancient History (AJAH), American Journal of Philology (AJP), Arethusa (ARETH), Classical Antiquity (CA), Classical Journal (CJ), Classical Philology (CP), Classical World (CW), Helios (HEL), Hesperia (HESP), Harvard Studies in Classical Philology (HSCP), Phoenix (PHOEN), and Transactions of the American Philological Association (TAPA). Figure 1 provides a longitudinal study of women’s participation in journal publications. The graph allows for comparisons among the percentages of women submitters to journals, of acceptances of female-authored articles, and of female reviewers. While the situation was at an all-time high in 1999, we must ask why the graph has been trailing downwards since then. It is interesting that percentages of women’s submissions and acceptances have been moving in fairly close tandem since 1977, rising from below 20% in 1977 to over 35% in 1999, with a slight downturn in the last two years. Percentages of women’s reviews, however, have always been below the other two ever since we began collecting this information in 1981; they fell considerably lower from 1993-1997, after which they have risen somewhat and are now only a few percentage points lower than the other two percentages. Figure 2 charts the percentage of female referees and the percentage of women on editorial boards. The significance here is the roughly 20% climb of both since 1981. Women serving on editorial boards have remained quite stable since about 1998, but the percentage of female referees dropped a bit in 1999-2000 and then recouped some in 2001. The slight drop does not seem of overall importance.

Figure 3 compares the percentage of acceptance rates for males and females. This is one of the most erratic graphs for the early years of our surveys. More recently, however, the percentages for both men and women have stayed quite stable between 35% and 40%. Figure 4 compares the total number of articles submitted to these twelve journals to the total number of articles accepted by them. While submissions have ranged from almost 800 articles to about 475 articles in 2001, acceptances in all the twelve journals have been fairly steady in the last ten years (between 100 and 200 articles). Figure 5 offers the mean percentage calculations for these twelve journals for submissions by women, total articles by women accepted, female referees for these journals, and women on editorial boards, again for the period 1977-2001. Although the average percentage of accepted articles written by women varies considerably among journals—with AJAH, CP, HSCP under 20%, AJP, PHOEN, TAPA under 30 %, CA, CW, HESP under 40%, ARETH under 50%, and HEL under 70%—there is never a difference of more than a few points between percentage of submissions and acceptances except in the case of HEL, where the acceptances are more than 10 percentage points higher than submission. So we might ask the following question: do certain journals publish only a small percentage of articles by women because women do not submit articles to them, or do women submit fewer articles to certain journals because they suspect they will not be accepted? The CSWMG reminds readers that all percentages for the year 1990 in Figures 1-4 may be inaccurate because of missing data, as is indicated under each figure. When interpreting the statistics about female referees in Figure 5, it should also be noted that AJAH does not release information about its referees.

The representation of women in submissions, acceptances, as reviewers, referees, and editorial board members continues at about the same number from last year’s report. We have finally caught up with previous surveys and had the opportunity to view the information over a longer period. Nevertheless, our work is far from finished. We need to continue to make the field reflective of the general population both in terms of gender and minority differentiation and participation. The CSWMG only hopes to increase awareness of issues relating to inequality, to inspire editors and their editorial boards to greater vigilance in such matters, and to help to bring more diverse voices, especially of women and minority groups, into the field of Classical Studies by these efforts.

In conclusion, this journal survey, as those of the past, could not have been accomplished without the help and cooperation of participating journal editors and their staff. The CSWMG wishes, therefore, to thank wholeheartedly the editors of the fifteen journals who responded for 2000 and those of the nineteen journals who submitted information for 2001. Editors in both the USA and Canada collected the crucial statistics of their journals and returned them in a timely fashion, often with many other pressing matters before them as well. Furthermore, the CSWMG owes a special debt of gratitude this year, as in many previous years, to Barbara McManus, APA Vice President for Professional Matters. She compiled the data for these two years and entered all the statistics from journal surveys since 1977 into a multi-year spreadsheet that has made it possible to chart longitudinal trends such as those Figures 1-5. In addition, she has standardized the process, sharpened its efficiency, and eliminated potential trouble spots that have plagued the survey with minor errors in the past. Barbara McManus generously offered technical expertise and much sage advice throughout the process. Her contribution was, as always, above and beyond the call of duty.

Respectfully submitted for the CSWMG,
Ann Olga Koloski-Ostrow, Brandeis University
APA Division of Professional Matters
American Philological Association
February 2003

Share This Page

© 2017, Society for Classical Studies Privacy Policy