Date of this Version
The Conversation, July 28, 2018.
Studies have shown that scholars in the global South are under represented in top international peer-reviewed social and medical sciences journals.
The global South refers to African, Asian, Latin American, and Middle Eastern countries who are also members of the Group of 77. The intergovernmental organisation of mainly developing countries is used to identify countries in the South. The global North includes the Group of 8 and the five permanent members of the UN Security Council. Our own analysis of gender and politics journals shows scholars in Africa, Asia, Latin America, and the Middle East are missing from leading journals published in the US and Europe. We found that between 2008 and 2017 less than 3% of 947 full length articles in four gender and politics journals published in the global North were written by scholars based in the global South. Researchers based in the global North have a wider global reach and are generally judged to be at the forefront of knowledge production and dissemination. Meanwhile, South-based scholars are often not part of major debates and conversations in their field. This points to a severe imbalance in the production of new knowledge. But all countries in the South are not alike. We found that scholars at three universities in South Africa (Rhodes University, University of Cape Town, and the University of the Witwatersrand) published the most articles followed by researchers at four universities in India. Surprisingly, scholars from large countries such as Bangladesh, Pakistan, Indonesia, and Nigeria have not published articles in these journals.