Beyoncé has won many Grammy Awards, but she’s an outlier in popular music, where women are underrepresented as artists, songwriters, and producers. Photo by Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic.

In Tuesday’s (1/30) New York Times, Ben Sisario writes, “Each year since 2018, the University of Southern California’s Annenberg Inclusion Initiative has tracked the number of women credited on the music industry’s biggest hits, and the numbers have usually been dismal—year after year, female artists, songwriters and producers have been crowded out by men, sometimes by extraordinary margins. In their latest report, however, the study’s researchers found some good news. Women’s involvement in the biggest hits of 2023 was greatly improved from previous years, and in some measurements reached higher proportions than the researchers have found in more than a decade of data…. Of last year’s most popular tracks—as defined by Billboard’s year-end Hot 100 singles chart—35 percent of the credited performing artists were women…. While the latest numbers are up … women still represented an average of only about 23 percent of performer credits on all surveyed songs since 2012…. The growth in women’s songwriting credits last year was ‘due almost exclusively’ to a rise in the number of songwriters who are women of color … In technical positions in the studio, however, women still lag far behind men, even though those numbers have also improved.”