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Penetration of the gender perspective and critical analysis on the development of this concept within scientific production on public health

Gender-based scientific production within public health from 1990 to 2008 was studied. A total of 1343 congress abstracts and 251 published articles was examined regarding their distribution in time, authorship, methodological approach, fields of knowledge and topics covered. The articles were also analyzed regarding epistemological coherence between the intention to use gender and actually doing so over the study, and regarding methodological consistency in applying the concept in terms of complete or partial meaning given to gender in accordance with its theoretical construction. The results showed that, despite its increasing penetration, 25.1% of the studies reduced gender to sex, what was considered to be non-coherent use; 37.8% had coherent gender use but gave it partial meaning; and only 37.1% gave it the complete meaning. In conclusion, gender has an important presence within the field, but is worked up in a methodologically imprecise manner that is lower than its analytical potential.

Gender and health; Public health; Scientific production

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