Traditionally, the first author contributes most and also receives most of the credit, whereas the position of subsequent authors is usually decided by contribution, alphabetical order, or reverse seniority. Ranking the first or second author in a two-author paper is straightforward, but the meaning of position becomes increasingly arbitrary as the number of authors increases beyond two.
The situation in our area of research—the ecological and environmental sciences—has changed in recent years. Following informal practices in the biomedical sciences, the last author often gets as much credit as the first author, because he or she is assumed to be the driving force, both intellectually and financially, behind the research.
Evaluation committees and funding bodies often take last authorship as a sign of successful group leadership and make this a criterion in hiring, granting, and promotion. Moreover, there is no accepted yardstick in assessing the actual contribution of a group leader to given scientific publications [ 8 , 9 ], so interpretation of author sequence can be like a lottery.
Hence, one really does not know if being last author means that the overall contribution was the most or least important. In multiauthored papers, the first author position should clearly be assigned to the individual making the greatest contribution [ 4—6 ], as is common practice.
For example, some authors use alphabetical sequence, while others think that the last author position has great importance or that the second author position is the second most important. We suggest that the approach taken should be stated in the acknowledgements section, and evaluation committees are asked to weigh the contribution of each author based on the criteria given by the authors.
This would make reviewers aware that there are different cultures to authorship order. The usual and informal practice of giving the whole credit impact factor to each author of a multiauthored paper is not adequate and overemphasises the minor contributions of many authors Table 1.
Similarly, evaluation of authors according to citation frequencies means often overrating resulting from high-impact but multiauthored publications. The following approaches may be identified. The sequence of authors should reflect the declining importance of their contribution, as suggested by previous authors [ 4—6 ].
Authorship order only reflects relative contribution, whereas evaluation committees often need quantitative measures. We suggest that the first author should get credit for the whole impact impact factor , the second author half, the third a third, and so forth, up to rank ten. Authors use alphabetical sequence to acknowledge similar contributions or to avoid disharmony in collaborating groups.
In many labs, the great importance of last authorship is well established. We suggest that the first author should get credit of the whole impact, the last author half, and the credit of the other authors is the impact divided by the number of all authors [as in 2 ].
This should also be used to establish the quantified credit. Multidisciplinary scientific collaboration indeed must be encouraged, but we need to avoid misinterpretations so that current and future scientific communities can evaluate author contributions. Quick facts and submission tips Angewandte Chemie: Quick facts and submission tips View all in Know Your Journal. Quick facts and submission tips Nature Methods: Quick facts and submission tips Organization Science journal: Quick facts and submission tips.
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Publishing a paper as the first author is very crucial for the scientific career of a Ph.D. student. Most Ph.D. programs worldwide require a Ph.D. student to have at least one first-authored paper in order to qualify for a degree. So an authorship dispute would be inevitable if two Ph.D. students were to work on the same project for their degree.
In fact, the average original research paper has five authors. The growing list of collaborative research projects raises important questions regarding the author order for research manuscripts and the impact an author list has on readers’ perceptions.
Jan 16, · When papers have more than ten authors, the contribution of each author from the tenth position onwards is then valuated just 5%. (2) The “equal contribution” norm (EC). Authors use alphabetical sequence to acknowledge similar contributions or to avoid disharmony in . Order of authors in an engineering publication. up vote 16 down vote favorite. 4. Recently, In my opinion, whatever the order of authors, the contributions should be individually stated, as it is common in some fields and journals. Status regarding co-authorship for a computer science research paper.
We have sometimes put all the authors of a research group before the authors of the other group. So, its up to the authors, but I would suggest yo to design a long term strategy for the authors order. Rare is the scientific paper today written by a single author. With research being conducted by teams of scientists, most studies now boast a half-dozen or so authors. According to a new study led.