J Epidemiol Community Health 61:ii1-ii2 doi:10.1136/jech.2007.069658
  • Gender
    • Editorial

Engendering epidemiology

  1. Ana M García1,2,
  2. Mel Bartley1,3,
  3. Carlos Alvarez-Dardet1,4
  1. 1
    Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health
  2. 2
    Department of Preventive Medicine and Public Health, University of Valencia, and Trade Union Institute for Work, Environment and Health, Valencia, Spain
  3. 3
    Department of Epidemiology and Public Health, University College of London, London, UK
  4. 4
    Department of Public Health, University of Alicante, Spain
  1. Ana M García, Instituto Sindical de Trabajo, Ambiente y Salud, Almirante 3, puerta 4, 46003 Valencia, Spain; anagar{at}

    Contributions from the Spanish Research Network for Health and Gender

    Nancy Krieger has remarked in the pages of a sister journal1 that the term gender was almost non-existent in biomedical or public health journals before the 1970s. Since then, the scientific production of knowledge on gender related health issues has increased in an almost logarithmic progression. It’s not a matter of fashion. The real issue is to fill an unjustifiable, unfair and damaging gap in the history of biomedical and public health research, with a deleterious impact on the history of health of women, more than a half of the world population.

    As in relation to many other dimensions of social inequality related to health, the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health has shown increasing interest in gender inequities.2 The aim of this work has been to construct what can be called an engendering epidemiology. Decision makers need sound scientific evidence on which to base decisions about priorities and the actions needed in order to avoid any kind of gender discrimination regarding health promotion, disease prevention and the management of ill people in the population. This emphasis on applied knowledge has for many years been a trademark of the journal.3

    According to PubMed, the first time the term “gender” was …