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Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Gender Disparity and Privilege in the 'Top Ten' Law Reviews

Minna J. Kotkin of Brooklyn Law School has posted
a new article to SSRN entitled Of Authorship and Audacity:
An Empirical Study of Gender Disparity and Privilege in
the 'Top Ten' Law Reviews.

From the SSRN Abstract:

This article analyzes authorship by gender and home school
"privilege" in 15 law reviews (the "top ten") over a three year
period... The article considers a number of possible explanations
for [the] gender disparity, including: years and subject matter of
teaching; affirmative action; institutional and family commitments;
and social science theories. At least as to the quantifiable hypotheses,
none fully explains the disparity. The article concludes with the
suggestion that editorial boards examine their selection processes
for unconscious bias with regard to gender and conscious bias
with regard to privilege and that they consider adopting true
anonymous submissions. It also argues that some number of
women academics have not perfected the "audacity" factor
that may contribute to article placement in elite journals. Although
the gender gap in hiring and promotion has largely been resolved,
the top of the legal academic ladder will elude women until the gender
disparity in publications is overcome."