International Organization

Research Note

The Gender Citation Gap in International Relations

Daniel Maliniaka1, Ryan Powersa2 and Barbara F. Waltera3

a1 University of California, San Diego. E-mail: [email protected]

a2 University of Wisconsin—Madison. E-mail: [email protected]

a3 University of California, San Diego. E-mail: [email protected]


This article investigates the extent to which citation and publication patterns differ between men and women in the international relations (IR) literature. Using data from the Teaching, Research, and International Policy project on peer-reviewed publications between 1980 and 2006, we show that women are systematically cited less than men after controlling for a large number of variables including year of publication, venue of publication, substantive focus, theoretical perspective, methodology, tenure status, and institutional affiliation. These results are robust to a variety of modeling choices. We then turn to network analysis to investigate the extent to which the gender of an article's author affects that article's relative centrality in the network of citations between papers in our sample. Articles authored by women are systematically less central than articles authored by men, all else equal. This is likely because (1) women tend to cite themselves less than men, and (2) men (who make up a disproportionate share of IR scholars) tend to cite men more than women. This is the first study in political science to reveal significant gender differences in citation patterns and is especially meaningful because citation counts are increasingly used as a key measure of research's quality and impact.

Daniel Maliniak is a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Political Science at the University of California, San Diego. E-mail: [email protected]

Ryan Powers is a graduate student in the Department of Political Science at the University of Wisconsin—Madison. E-mail: [email protected]

Barbara F. Walter is Professor of Political Science and Associate Dean at the Graduate School of International Relations and Pacific Studies, University of California, San Diego. E-mail: [email protected]


  We thank Karen Alter, Tim Büthe, Peter Gourevitch, Zoltan Hajnal, Kelly Kadera, Bob Keohane, David Lake, Lisa Martin, Rose McDermott, Andrew Moravcsik, Sara Mitchell, Maya Oren, Maggie Peters, Jaime Settle, and two anonymous reviewers for invaluable comments. We also thank the Institute for the Theory and Practice of International Relations at the College of William and Mary for providing research assistance. Powers acknowledges support from the National Science Foundation Graduate Fellowship under Grant No. DGE-0718123.

  Supplementary materials for this article are available at