Marek Kwiek an Lukasz Szymula: How to Study Millions of Young Male and Female Scientists Globally?

Marek Kwiek an Lukasz Szymula: How to Study Millions of Young Male and Female Scientists Globally?

In this study, the global scientific workforce is explored through a large-scale, generational, and longitudinal approach. We examine 4.3 million nonoccasional scientists from 38 OECD countries publishing in 1990-2021. Our longitudinal interest is in the changing distribution of young male and female scientists over time across 16 STEMM disciplines. We unpack the details of the changing scientific workforce using ten 5-year age groups within each discipline. The usefulness of global bibliometric data sources in analyzing the scientific workforce along the four dimensions of gender, age, discipline, and time is tested. Traditional aggregated data about scientists in general hide a nuanced picture of the changing gender dynamics within and across disciplines and age groups. For instance, the pivotal role of medicine in the global scientific workforce is highlighted, with almost half of all scientists (45.98%) in the OECD area being primarily involved in medical research, and more than half of female scientists (55.02%) being disciplinarily located in medicine. Limitations of bibliometric datasets are explored and global studies are compared with national-level studies. The methodological choices and their implications are shown, and new opportunities for how to study scientists globally are discussed.

Bibliographic information: 

M. Kwiek, L. Szymula (2023). “Young Male and Female Scientists: A Quantitative Exploratory Study of the Changing Demographics of the Global Scientific Workforce”. arXiv preprint available from:


Professor Marek Kwiek is Director of the Institute for Advanced Studies and UNESCO Chair in Institutional Research and Higher Education Policy, AMU University of Poznan, Poland ( His research area is quantitative studies of science, with interests in globalization of science, global academic profession, and international research collaboration. He has published 230 papers and his recent monograph is Changing European Academics: A Comparative Study of Social Stratification, Work Patterns and Research Productivity (Routledge, 2019). His most recent invited seminars include Berkeley, Harvard, Stanford, Oxford, Beijing and Hong Kong. He spent three years at North American universities, including the University of Virginia, UC Berkeley, National Endowment for Democracy in Washington, DC, and McGill University. He was also a Fulbright New Century Scholar in higher education (2007-2008) and a Professorial Visiting Fellow at the UCL Institute of Education, London (2012-2013). Currently (2022-2023), he is a Visiting Researcher at the German Center for Higher Education Research and Science Studies (DZHW), Berlin. A Principal Investigator or country Team Leader in 25 international higher education research projects. An ordinary member of the European Academy of Sciences and Arts (EASA) in Salzburg and Academia Europaea in London. Contact: Twitter: @Marek_Kwiek.

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