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First, Data

Dozens of academic publishers plan to begin to collect additional data from their authors to get a better sense of researcher diversity among their pages, Nature News reports.

It adds that following the death of George Floyd, the growth of the Black Lives Matter movement, and the greater recognition of structural racism, a number of publishers said they would track and work to reduce bias in academic publishing. But as Nature News notes, many of the publishers lacked data.

A coalition of 52 publishers are now developing a standard set of questions to ask researchers about their race or ethnicity and gender, Nature News says. It adds that developing the set of questions is tricky  as social categories vary across world cultures. In a pilot study of the question set, about 90 percent of the 1,000 people surveyed answered and about two-third said they were well-represented in the question set, it says. Still, Nature News notes that others declined to answer due to, for instance, worries over how such data could be used, feedback that it says has led to wording changes to make the purpose of the data collection and how it will be stored clearer.

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