Katherine Hawley has written to us with a good question.
I edit the Philosophical Quarterly, and we keep statistics on numbers of papers submitted, rejected and accepted each year, our turn-around time, etc.
It has crossed my mind more than once that it would be interesting to have statistics on the gender of submitting authors, and relative success rates. But then we’d have to ask authors to declare their gender to the editorial assistant. This wouldn’t affect the anonymous refereeing process, but I wonder whether it would unsettle authors. How would you feel about being asked your gender when you submitted a paper to a journal?
It’s a great question, and I’m really pleased to have the editor of such a prominent journal asking it. I’d also add that it would be good to have such data on race, and similar questions would arise.
So… what do you think?