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

Christine Cuskley, Seán G. Roberts, Stephen Politzer-Ahles, Tessa Verhoef

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


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 EvoLang 11. We update this analysis in two specific ways. First, we add data from the most recent EvoLang 12 conference, providing a comprehensive picture of the conference over five iterations. Like EvoLang 11, EvoLang 12 used double-blind review, but EvoLang 12 showed no significant difference in review scores between genders. We discuss potential explanations for why there was a strong effect in EvoLang 11, which is largely absent in EvoLang 12. These include testing whether readability differs between genders, though we find no evidence to support this. Although gender differences seem to have declined for EvoLang 12, we suggest that double-blind review provides a more equitable evaluation process.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)92-99
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Language Evolution
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2020


  • Conference
  • EvoLang
  • Gender bias

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Linguistics and Language
  • Developmental Neuroscience


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