Objectives Neurology as a specialty is becoming increasingly feminised. Generally, women are under-represented in academic medicine, particularly at more senior levels. The aim of this study was to assess the gender balance of presenters at the 2014 ABN meeting.
Methods Data on gender mix of the specialty was obtained from the 2012 Federation of the Royal College of Physicians Census. Oral presenters and first authors from posters were identified using the Meeting Programme and Abstract Book and the GMC register was used to ascertain individuals' gender.
Results 29.5% of neurology trainees and consultants are female. There were 38 platform presentations, and 188 poster presentations. It was possible to identify the gender of 99.6% of presenters and first authors. 48.9% of first authors on posters were female; women conducted 18.4% of platform presentations. Oral presenters were significantly more likely to be male (p<0.01).
Conclusion Compared to the specialty as a whole, women were well represented at the meeting. However, females were significantly less likely to undertake more prestigious oral presentations. Further work is planned to identify whether the reason behind this imbalance is explicit or implicit bias, and to help identify barriers to increasing female participation in academic neurology.