Indian Journal of Dental Research

LETTER TO EDITOR
Year
: 2012  |  Volume : 23  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 292-

Ethical guidelines on authorship


Syed Ahmed Zaki1, Syed Ahmed Taqi2, Lateef Begum Sami3, Angadi Rajasab Nilofer4,  
1 Department of Pediatrics, Lokmanya Tilak Municipal Medical College and General Hospital,Mumbai, India
2 Department of Oral Pathology and Microbiology, Bharati Vidyapeeth University Dental College and Hospital, Navi Mumbai, India
3 Department of Physiology, Mahatma Gandhi Mission Medical College and Hospital, Aurangabad, India
4 Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Jaya Jagadguru Murugharajendra Medical College Davangere, Karnataka, India

Correspondence Address:
Syed Ahmed Zaki
Department of Pediatrics, Lokmanya Tilak Municipal Medical College and General Hospital,Mumbai
India




How to cite this article:
Zaki SA, Taqi SA, Sami LB, Nilofer AR. Ethical guidelines on authorship.Indian J Dent Res 2012;23:292-292


How to cite this URL:
Zaki SA, Taqi SA, Sami LB, Nilofer AR. Ethical guidelines on authorship. Indian J Dent Res [serial online] 2012 [cited 2021 Sep 21 ];23:292-292
Available from: https://www.ijdr.in/text.asp?2012/23/2/292/100445


Full Text

Sir,

We would like to congratulate Sholapurkar for highlighting a very important issue regarding the ethical guidelines deciding the authorship. [1] However, the statement that "There are no proper guidelines as to who would be the authors and order of authorship" is not totally correct. We would like to bring to the notice of the readers that the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE) offers specific and clear guidelines for authorship that are most commonly referenced by scientific journals: "Authorship credit should be based on (1) substantial contributions to conception and design, or acquisition of data, or analysis and interpretation of data; (2) drafting the article or revising it critically for important intellectual content; and (3) final approval of the version to be published. Authors should meet conditions 1, 2, and 3." [2] All contributors who do not meet the criteria for authorship should be listed in an acknowledgment section. In addition there are other committees like the American Chemical Society (ACS), the American Statistical Association (ASA), the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE), and the National Institutes of Health (NIH) which are less specific and allow more freedom in determining the appropriateness of granting authorship. [3] The Indian Journal of Dental Research uses the ICJME guidelines for authorship criteria.

We would also like to comment on the two examples given by Sholapurkar in his article. The first example given is that of the postgraduate students planning to conduct a study on a particular surgical procedure. According to Sholapurkar, the senior faculty member who has operated all the cases would be the first author, and the second author would be the postgraduate student. The mere fact that the senior member has operated all the cases does not give him the first authorship. If the postgraduate student has reviewed the literature, drafted the article, and assisted in operating the cases, he deserves the first authorship as per ICJME criteria. There are no issues in deciding the authorship in the second example if one applies the ICJME criteria. If an initiator or a motivator, who has good writing skills, is interested to write a paper with the help of others involved in managing that case his name should be quoted as an author as per the criteria. He will fulfill all the three criteria of ICJME, i.e. (1) analysis and interpretation of data; (2) drafting the article or revising it critically for important intellectual content; and (3) final approval of the version to be published. We completely support the author's belief that "we should grow and make others grow." However, the readers should not misinterpret the above statement. The statement does not mean giving a gift authorship to juniors, colleagues, or seniors in the department to make them grow or progress in their academic field. It means motivating juniors and colleagues to write articles and guiding them while reviewing literature and drafting the article. By doing this we can set a perfect example for others to follow. Lastly, we would like to highlight that good publication practices do not develop by chance, and will become established only if they are actively promoted

References

1Sholapurkar AA. Ethical guidelines deciding the authorship. Indian J Dent Res 2010;21:315.
2Uniform Requirements for Manuscripts Submitted to Biomedical Journals: Writing and Editing for Biomedical Publication. Available from: http://www.icmje.org. [Last Accessed on December 4, 2010]
3Welker JA, McCue JD. Authorship versus "credit" for participation in research: a case study of potential ethical dilemmas created by technical tools used by researchers and claims for authorship by their creators. J Am Med Inform Assoc 2007;14:16-8