Diversity, equity, and inclusion editorial positions among high-impact biomedical journals

Jeremy W. Jacobs, Brian D. Adkins, Lorin A. Bibb, Garrett S. Booth

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objectives: Although diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) initiatives are progressively being implemented across various arenas in academic medicine, biomedical research, and healthcare, significant inequities throughout medicine and biomedical research remain. One means by which to rectify these long-standing inequities is through the implementation of a position dedicated to DEI among journal editorial boards; thus, we sought to assess the extent to which this position has been implemented among high-impact biomedical research journals. Methods: We performed a cross-sectional analysis of the editorial boards of the top 100 journals by impact factor (IF) across 30 medical specialties. All editorial board positions (editors-in-chief, deputy, associate, and assistant editors, as well as editorial and advisory board members) were included. We also assessed the proportion of other named-position editors (i.e. social media and statistics editors), and compared these to the proportion of DEI editors. Results: Among the 100 highest IF biomedical journals (range: 12.035–508.702), 6 (6%) have a DEI editorial position. In contrast, 25 (25%) and 35 (35%) journals have at least 1 social media or statistics editorial position, respectively. The DEI editorial position comprises 0.086% of the 6974 total editorial positions, while social media (60/6974) and statistical (196/6974) editors comprise 0.86% and 2.81% of total journal editorial board positions, respectively. Conclusions: Few of the most influential biomedical journals have implemented a formal, named position dedicated to DEI. Biomedical journals should consider establishing a dedicated DEI editorial position, and ensure this individual position is publicly denoted on the editorial board.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalCurrent Medical Research and Opinion
StateAccepted/In press - 2023


  • biomedical publishing
  • Diversity
  • equity
  • inclusion
  • research

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)


Dive into the research topics of 'Diversity, equity, and inclusion editorial positions among high-impact biomedical journals'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this