Who Gets Published?

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The ‘European’ in the European Journal of International Law has multiple meanings. I refer you to the Editorial in our first issue 21 years ago, partly replicated in the Editorial to our first issue of the 20th Anniversary volume. Still, how European has our authors list been in the first 20 years of EJIL? (Note, we do not check passports or birth certificates. We are using the institutional affiliation of the author as a proxy for origin. This can lead at times to amusing anomalies. We published a piece by Gráinne de Búrca on Kadi. A European writing about a European case. But, given her current US institutional affiliation, that would have counted as a submission from the USA in the stats. For the most part, the anomalies cancel themselves out and the institutional nationality serves as a reliable proxy – most submissions from Italian universities are by Italian nationals.)

Over 20 years about 62% of our articles originated in EU countries, a further 7% in Council of Europe countries not belonging to the EU, about 20% from the United States and about 11% from the rest of the world. This is a 20-year average, which can change from year to year. In 2010 about 57% originated in the EU, a further 22% in Council of Europe countries outside the EU, 15% from the rest of the world and 6% from the USA.

What about language? At an early stage in its life EJIL was bilingual – English and French. It netted very few pieces in French and irritated the Germans, Italians and Spaniards, who never liked a Two-Language solution for Europe. After much editorial agonizing, and some pressure from our publishers, we became all English (this all happened in the distant past).

Over 20 years a majority of our articles, 55%, originated in non-English-speaking countries and 45% in English-speaking countries. In 2010, 74% originated in non-English-speaking countries and 26% in English-speaking countries.

Gender has seen some remarkable changes. Over 20 years 81% of our articles were by male and 19% by female authors. In the first three years of EJIL’s life all articles were by men. From 1993 the numbers of female authors began to rise, reaching 37% in 2010. I was interested in the percentage of published articles by women in comparison to their percentage in the pool. We did not keep good records of submissions in earlier years. We have reliable records of submissions only for the last two years. In 2009 women constituted 31% of the pool and 33% of articles published. In 2010 the numbers were 31% and 37% respectively.

More information will come in future Editorials.

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Marko Divac Öberg says

April 12, 2011

It's very encouraging that the proportion of women published in EJIL is increasing. However, at least one woman was published during EJIL's first three years (Ruth Lapidoth, 1991).