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Joint Authorship

In 2006 Faculty Senate approved an updated version of the University’s policy on joint authorship. Aimed at clarifying how authorship is assigned in research publications, the policy places responsibility with faculty members or other research supervisors to “guarantee that fairness and accuracy are exercised in listing the authors.”

The policy also calls for decisions about authorship to be made jointly by all parties involved in the research. Acknowledging that “co-authorship is often difficult to allocate” the policy calls for authorship to be allocated “generously” in favor of students in cases of joint professor/student research.

In cases where opinions on authorship differ or additional guidance is sought the policy encourages conversation with the Department Head and/or Dean.

Overall, the policy advocates for proactive discussions between all collaborators “before and at each step during the project so that misunderstandings will be less likely to arise at the time of publication.”

The University’s Ombuds Office may provide guidance in cases of disputed authorship credit. Individuals may seek the services of this office without threat or fear of reprisal. In cases of potential scholarly misconduct, the University’s policy regarding Charges of Misconduct in Research and Scholarly Activities may be invoked.   

The full Policy Statement on Joint Authorship may be found here.