The Norms of Authorship Credit: Challenging the Definition of Authorship in the European Code of Conduct for Research Integrity

Accountability in Research 27 (2):80-98 (2020)
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The practice of assigning authorship for a scientific publication tends to raise two normative questions: 1) ‘who should be credited as an author?’; 2) ‘who should not be credited as an author but should still be acknowledged?’. With the publication of the revised version of The European Code of Conduct for Research Integrity (ECCRI), standard answers to these questions have been called into question. This article examines the ways in which the ECCRI approaches these two questions and compares these approaches to standard definitions of ‘authorship’ and ‘acknowledgment’ in guidelines issued by the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE) and the World Association of Medical Editors (WAME). In light of two scenarios and the problems posed by these kinds of ‘real-world’ examples, we recommend specific revisions to the content of the ECCRI in order not only to provide a more detailed account of the tasks deserving of acknowledgment, but to improve the Code’s current definition of authorship.

Author Profiles

Mohammad Hosseini
Northwestern University
Jonathan Lewis
University of Manchester


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