To investigate the presence of gender disparity in academic involvement during radiology residency and to identify and characterize any gender differences in perceived barriers for conducting research.
An international call for participation in an online survey was promoted via social media and through multiple international and national radiological societies. A 35-question survey invited radiology trainees worldwide to answer questions regarding exposure and barriers to academic radiology during their training. Gender differences in response proportions were analyzed using either Fisher’s exact or chi-squared tests.
Eight hundred fifty-eight participants (438 men, 420 women) from Europe (432), Asia (241), North and South America (144), Africa (37), and Oceania (4) completed the survey. Fewer women radiology residents were involved in research during residency (44.3%, 186/420 vs 59.4%, 260/438; p ≤ 0.0001) and had fewer published original articles (27.9%, 117/420 vs. 40.2%, 176/438; p = 0.001).
Women were more likely to declare gender as a barrier to research (24.3%, 102/420 vs. 6.8%, 30/438; p < 0.0001) and lacked mentorship/support from faculty (65%, 273/420 vs. 55.7%, 244/438; p = 0.0055). Men were more likely to declare a lack of time (60.3%, 264/438 vs. 50.7%, 213/420; p = 0.0049) and lack of personal interest (21%, 92/438 vs. 13.6%, 57/420, p = 0.0041) in conducting research.
Fewer women were involved in academic activities during radiology residency, resulting in fewer original published studies compared to their men counterparts. This is indicative of an inherent gender imbalance. Lack of mentorship reported by women radiologists was a main barrier to research.