, Volume 82, Issue 2, pp 421–442 | Cite as

Decision Theoretic Model of the Productivity Gap

  • Liam Kofi BrightEmail author
Original Article


Using a decision theoretic model of scientists’ time allocation between potential research projects I explain the fact that on average women scientists publish less research papers than men scientists. If scientists are incentivised to publish as many papers as possible, then it is necessary and sufficient for a productivity gap to arise that women scientists anticipate harsher treatment of their manuscripts than men scientists anticipate for their manuscripts. I present evidence that women do expect harsher treatment and that scientists’ are incentivised to publish as many papers as possible, and discuss some epistemological consequences of this conjecture.


Cognitive Diversity Woman Scientist Social Epistemology Female Orgasm Idea Homogeneity 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



My thanks for helpful comments from Cailin O’Connor, Haixin Dang, Remco Heesen, David M. Levy, Daniel Malinsky, Eric Schliesser, Elizabeth Silver, Julia Staffel, Jennifer Saul, Olúfȩ́mi O. Táíwò, Zina B. Ward, Danielle Wenner, Kevin Zollman, and the reviewers at Erkenntnis. Special thanks to Carole Lee for providing both the initial impetus to research and also helpful commentary throughout.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Philosophy, Baker Hall 161Carnegie Mellon UniversityPittsburghUSA

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