Miami Cancer Institute Study Shows Underrepresentation of Women and Researchers from Low- and Middle-Income Countries in Urology Evidence Synthesis
MIAMI, FL – April 10, 2023 – A study by researchers from Miami Cancer Institute, part of Baptist Health South Florida, published in British Journal of Urology (BJU) International, one of the leading journals in the field, shows that female authors and researchers from low- and middle-income countries (LMIC) remain underrepresented in evidence synthesis in urology. Out of more than 300 urology-related reviews analyzed, less than 2 percent were from LMICs, and women comprised less than half of all co-authors, all first authors, and all corresponding authors.
“Female authors and those from low- and lower-middle-income countries have historically been under-represented in the urology literature,” said Ahmad Ozair, MBBS, postdoctoral research fellow in neuro-oncology at Miami Cancer Institute, and lead author of the study. “Researchers from LMIC face multipronged barriers to conducting and publishing original research that impact clinical practice globally. They also face challenges related to the visibility and recognition of their expertise. For instance, this is reflected in challenges related to review articles considered for publication by high-impact biomedical journals.”
The study, done in collaboration with University of Minnesota Professor Philipp Dahm, M.D., MHSc, is based on data from Cochrane Reviews, which are systematic reviews of research in health care and health policy that are open to researchers worldwide. A total of 317 urology-related reviews, co-authored by 1443 authors, were included in the study. Merely 28 co-authors (1.94 percent) were from LMICs, and high-income countries (HICs) were over-represented. The U.K., U.S., and Germany together contributed more than 60 percent of all co-authors. Overall, women made up 41.4 percent of co-authors, 44.8 percent of first authors, and 40.4 percent of corresponding authors. These proportions saw temporal fluctuations between 35 and 55 percent across various periods but did not demonstrate increasing trends of female authorship.
“This is a very insightful study,” said Manmeet Ahluwalia, M.D., MBA, FASCO deputy director, Fernandez Family Foundation Endowed Chair in Cancer Research, chief of medical oncology, and chief scientific officer of the Institute, part of Baptist Health, as well as co-author of the study. “The low levels of geographic diversity in this work is consistent with citation analyses published in the last few years, which show that nearly 80 percent of the top-100 most-cited articles in urologic surgery come from the U.S. The study indicates that capacity-building efforts are needed to involve low-middle-income country researchers with high-impact evidence synthesis efforts.”
Click here to read the full study.
About Miami Cancer Institute
Miami Cancer Institute brings to South Florida access to personalized clinical treatments and comprehensive support services delivered with unparalleled compassion. No other cancer program in the region has the combination of cancer-fighting expertise and advanced technology—including the first proton therapy center in South Florida, Latin America and the Caribbean, and one of the only radiation oncology programs in the world with each of the newest radiation therapies in one place—to diagnose and deliver precise cancer treatments that achieve the best outcomes and improve the lives of cancer patients. The Institute offers an impressive roster of established community oncologists and renowned experts, clinical researchers and genomic scientists recruited from the nation’s top cancer centers. Selected as Florida’s only member of the Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer (MSK) Alliance, Miami Cancer Institute is part of a meaningful clinical collaboration that affords patients in South Florida access to innovative treatments and ensures that the standards of care developed by their multidisciplinary disease management teams match those at MSK. For more information, please visit https://cancer.baptisthealth.net/miami-cancer-institute.
Miami Cancer Institute is part of Baptist Health Cancer Care, the largest cancer program in South Florida, with locations from the Florida Keys to the Palm Beaches.