Defining authorship in your research paper

Co-authors, corresponding authors, and affiliations

Why does authorship matter?

Authorship gives credit and implies accountability for published work, so there are academic, social and financial implications.

It is very important to make sure people who have contributed to a paper, are given credit as authors. And also that people who are recognized as authors, understand their responsibility and accountability for what is being published.

There are a couple of types of authorship to be aware of.

  • Co-author
    Any person who has made a significant contribution to a journal article. They also share responsibility and accountability for the results of the published research.

  • Corresponding author
    If more than one author writes an article, you’ll choose one person to be the corresponding author. This person will handle all correspondence about the article and sign the publishing agreement on behalf of all the authors. They are responsible for ensuring that all the authors’ contact details are correct, and agree on the order that their names will appear in the article. The authors also will need to make sure that affiliations are correct, as explained in more detail below.

Open access publishing

There is increasing pressure on researchers to show the societal impact of their research.

Open access can help your work reach new readers, beyond those with easy access to a research library.

How common is co-authorship and what are the challenges collaborating authors face? Our white paper Co-authorship in the Humanities and Social Sciences: A global view explores the experiences of 894 researchers from 62 countries.

If you are a named co-author, this means that you:

  1. Made a significant contribution to the work reported. That could be in the conception, study design, execution, acquisition of data, analysis and interpretation, or in all these areas.

  2. Have drafted or written, substantially revised or critically reviewed the article.

  3. Have agreed on the journal to which the article will be submitted.

  4. Reviewed and agreed on all versions of the article before submission, during revision, the final version accepted for publication, and any significant changes introduced at the proofing stage.

  5. Agree to take responsibility and be accountable for the contents of the article. Share responsibility to resolve any questions raised about the accuracy or integrity of the published work.

Every submission to our medical and health science journals should comply with the International Committee on Medical Journal Ethics’ definition of authorship.

Please include any other form of specific personal contribution in the acknowledgments section of your paper.

Affiliations: get it right

Your affiliation in the manuscript should be the institution where you conducted the research. You should also include details of any funding received from that institution.

If you have changed affiliation since completing the research, your new affiliation can be acknowledged in a note. We can’t normally make changes to affiliation after the journal accepts your article.

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Changes to authorship

  • Authorship changes post-submission should only be made in exceptional circumstances, and any requests for authors to be removed or added must be in line with our authorship criteria.  

  • If you need to make an authorship change, you will need to contact the Journal Editorial Office or Editorial team in the first instance. You will be asked to complete our Authorship Change request form; all authors (including those you are adding or removing) must sign this form. This will be reviewed by the Editor (and in some instances, the publisher). 

  • Please note any authorship change is at the Editor’s discretion; they have the right to refuse any authorship change they do not believe conforms with our authorship policies. 

  • Some T&F journals do not allow any authorship changes post-submission; where this is applicable, this will be clearly indicated on the journal homepage or on the ‘instructions for authors’ page. 

  • If the corresponding author changes before the article is published (for example, if a co-author becomes the corresponding author), you will need to write to the editor of the journal and the production editor. You will need to confirm to them that both authors have agreed the change.

  • Requested changes to the co-authors or corresponding authors following publication of the article may be considered, in line with the authorship guidelines issued by COPE, the Committee on Publication Ethics. Please see our corrections policy for more details. Any requests for changes must be made by submitting the completed Authorship Change Request form.

Authorship Change Request form

Important: agree on your corresponding author and the order of co-authors, and check all affiliations and contact details before submitting.

Taylor & Francis Editorial Policies on Authorship

The following instructions (part of our Editorial Policies) apply to all Taylor & Francis Group journals.

Corresponding author

Co-authors must agree on who will take on the role of corresponding author. It is then the responsibility of the corresponding author to reach consensus with all co-authors regarding all aspects of the article, prior to submission. This includes the authorship list and order, and list of correct affiliations.

The corresponding author is also responsible for liaising with co-authors regarding any editorial queries. And, they act on behalf of all co-authors in any communication about the article throughout: submission, peer review, production, and after publication. The corresponding author signs the publishing agreement on behalf of all the listed authors.

AI-based tools and technologies for content generation

Authors must be aware that using AI-based tools and technologies for article content generation, e.g. large language models (LLMs), generative AI, and chatbots (e.g. ChatGPT), is not in line with our authorship criteria.

All authors are wholly responsible for the originality, validity and integrity of the content of their submissions. Therefore, LLMs and other similar types of tools do not meet the criteria for authorship.

Where AI tools are used in content generation, they must be acknowledged and documented appropriately in the authored work.

Changes in authorship

Any changes in authorship prior to or after publication must be agreed upon by all authors – including those authors being added or removed. It is the responsibility of the corresponding author to obtain confirmation from all co-authors and to provide a completed Authorship Change Request form to the editorial office.

If a change in authorship is necessary after publication, this will be amended via a post-publication notice. Any changes in authorship must comply with our criteria for authorship. And requests for significant changes to the authorship list, after the article has been accepted, may be rejected if clear reasons and evidence of author contributions cannot be provided.

Assistance from scientific, medical, technical writers or translators

Contributions made by professional scientific, medical or technical writers, translators or anyone who has assisted with the manuscript content, must be acknowledged. Their source of funding must also be declared.

They should be included in an ‘Acknowledgments’ section with an explanation of their role, or they should be included in the author list if appropriate.

Authors are advised to consult the joint position statement from American Medical Writers Association (AMWA), European Medical Writers Association (EMWA), and International Society of Medical Publication Professionals (ISMPP).

Assistance with experiments and data analysis

Any significant contribution to the research reported, should be appropriately credited according to our authorship criteria.

If any parts of the research were outsourced to professional laboratories or to data analysts, this should be clearly stated within the manuscript, alongside an explanation of their role. Or, they should be included in the author list if appropriate.

Authors are responsible for retaining all of the original data related to their work, and should be prepared to share it with the journal editorial office if requested.

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Any individuals who have contributed to the article (for example, technical assistance, formatting-related writing assistance, translators, scholarly discussions which significantly contributed to developing the article), but who do not meet the criteria for authorship, should be listed by name and affiliation in an ‘Acknowledgments’ section.

It is the responsibility of the authors to notify and obtain permission from those they wish to identify in this section. The process of obtaining permission should include sharing the article, so that those being identified can verify the context in which their contribution is being acknowledged.

Any assistance from AI tools for content generation (e.g. large language models) and other similar types of technical tools which generate article content, must be clearly acknowledged within the article. It is the responsibility of authors to ensure the validity, originality and integrity of their article content. Authors are expected to use these types of tools responsibly and in accordance with our editorial policies on authorship and principles of publishing ethics.

Biographical note

Please supply a short biographical note for each author. This could be adapted from your departmental website or academic networking profile and should be relatively brief (e.g. no more than 200 words).Authors are responsible for retaining all of the original data related to their work, and should be prepared to share it with the journal editorial office if requested.

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Author name changes on published articles

There are many reasons why an author may change their name in the course of their career. And they may wish to update their published articles to reflect this change, without publicly announcing this through a correction notice. Taylor & Francis will update journal articles where an author makes a request for their own name change, full or partial, without the requirement for an accompanying correction notice. Any pronouns in accompanying author bios and declaration statements will also be updated as part of the name change, if required.

When an author requests a name change, Taylor & Francis will:

  • Change the metadata associated with the article on our Taylor & Francis Online platform.

  • Update the HTML and PDF version of the article.

  • Resupply the new metadata and article content to any abstracting and indexing services that have agreements with the journal. Note: such services may have their own bibliographic policies regarding author name changes. Taylor \u0026amp; Francis cannot be held responsible for controlling updates to articles on third party sites and services once an article has been disseminated.

If an author wishes for a correction notice to be published alongside their name change, Taylor & Francis will accommodate this on request. But, it is not required for an author name change to be made.

To request a name change, please contact your Journal’s Production Editor or contact us.

Taylor & Francis consider it a breach of publication ethics to request a name change for an individual without their explicit consent.

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Additional resources