Double-blind reviewing and gender biases at EvoLang conferences: an update

Christine Cuskley, Sean G Roberts, Stephen Politzer-Ahles, Tessa Verhoef

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)
44 Downloads (Pure)


A previous study of reviewing at the Evolution of Language conferences found effects that suggested that gender bias against female authors was alleviated under double-blind review at EvoLang11. We update this analysis in two specific ways. First, we add data from the most recent EvoLang12 conference, providing a comprehensive picture of the conference over five iterations. Like EvoLang11, EvoLang12 used double-blind review, but EvoLang12 showed no significant difference in review scores between genders. We discuss potential explanations for why there was a strong effect in EvoLang11 which is largely absent in EvoLang12. These include testing whether readability differs between genders, though we find no evidence to support this. Although gender differences seem to have declined for EvoLang12, we suggest that double-blind review provides a more equitable evaluation process.
Original languageEnglish
Article numberlzz007
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Language Evolution
Early online date12 Oct 2019
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 12 Oct 2019


  • gender bias
  • conference
  • EvoLang


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