Policy Details

2000-3-8 Authorship in Scholarly or Scientific Publications or Presentations

Responsible Executive Vice-President, Research & Innovation
Manager, Partnership, Strategic Initiatives & Communication
Issue Date January 18, 2018
Last Review April 7, 2021
Last Revision January 18, 2018

Upon request, the college will provide a copy of this policy in an alternate format.

This policy draws substantially on the Guidance on Authorship in Scholarly or Scientific Publications, Office of the Provost, Yale University.

The public's trust in and benefit from academic research and scholarship relies upon all those persons involved in the scholarly endeavour adhering to the highest ethical standards, including standards related to the publication and dissemination of findings and conclusions.


  1. All scholarly or scientific publications involving faculty, staff, students or trainees arising from academic activities performed with the support or oversight of Lambton College must include appropriate attribution of authorship and disclosure of relevant affiliations of those involved in the work, as described below.
  2. Publications, which, for the purposes of this policy, include articles, abstracts, manuscripts submitted for publication, presentations at professional meetings or other venues, and applications for funding, must appropriately acknowledge contributions of colleagues and partners involved in the design, conduct or dissemination of the work by neither overly attributing contribution nor ignoring meaningful contributions.
  3. Financial and other supporting relationships of those individuals or bodies involved in the scholarly work must be transparent and disclosed in publications arising from the work.

Authorship Standards

  1. Authorship of a scientific or scholarly paper should be limited to those individuals who have contributed in a meaningful and substantive way to its intellectual content. All authors are responsible for fairly evaluating their roles in the project as well as the roles of their co-authors to ensure that authorship is attributed according to these standards in all publications for which they will be listed as an author.

Scholarly or Scientific Publications for Collaborative Projects with Industry and Organizations

  1. If a project is conducted in collaboration with any external organization and industry (the partner), any publication, presentation and knowledge dissemination must follow the individual agreement between the Partner(s) and the College. This agreement can be an Intellectual Property (IP) Agreement, Master Collaboration Agreement, Schedule D, or any similar agreements.
  2. Based on the College's current Intellectual Property policy, IP rights are expected to be allocated to industrial Partners for commercialization, with support from the project and Lambton College.
  3. Lambton College Researchers and Students may make presentations about a project and publish aspects of a project only after receiving prior written approval by the respective Partner(s). The Partner must receive any presentation, publication, press release or any other outreach or knowledge dissemination activity materials in order to make a decision, provide suggestions and grant approval.
  4. If the presentation or publication concerning a collaborative project is approved, individuals from the Partner who meet the criteria for authorship must be included as authors.
  5. Industry or corporate representatives or others retained by the industry or corporation who contribute to a publication and meet the requirements for authorship or acknowledgement must be appropriately listed as contributors or authors on the article and their industry and/or corporate affiliation must be disclosed in the publication.

Requirement for Attribution of Authorship

  1. Each author must have participated sufficiently in the work to take public responsibility for its content. All co-authors should have been directly involved in all three of the following:
    1. Planning and contribution to some component (conception, design, conduct, analysis or interpretation) of the work that led to the paper or interpreting at least a portion of the results;
    2. Writing a draft of the article or revising it for intellectual content; and
    3. Final approval of the version to be published. All authors must review and approve the manuscript before it is submitted for publication, at least as it pertains to their roles in the project.

Lead Author

  1. The lead author is usually the person who has performed the central experiments of the project. Often, this individual is also the person who has prepared the first draft of the manuscript. The lead author will usually serve as the "corresponding author".
  2. The lead author is ultimately responsible for
    1. ensuring that all other authors meet the requirements for authorship,
    2. ensuring the integrity of the work itself.


  1. Each co-author is responsible for considering his or her role in the project and whether that role merits attribution of authorship. Co-authors must review and approve the manuscript, at least as it pertains to their roles in the project.


  1. Individuals who do not meet the requirements for authorship but who have provided a valuable contribution to the work must be acknowledged for their contributing role as appropriate to the publication. The acknowledgements must include the Partner companies and organizations and funding agencies in general.


  1. Research project Administrators including Applied Research and Innovation Department staff, research centre managers and the financial team cannot be authors unless they provide technical inputs to the project or paper.

Courtesy or Gift Authorship

  1. Individuals do not satisfy the criteria for authorship merely because they have made possible or facilitated the conduct of the research and/or the preparation of the manuscript. 
  2. Under no circumstance may individuals be added as co-authors based on the individual's stature in an attempt to increase the likelihood of publication or credibility of the work. For example, heading a laboratory, research program, section or department where the research takes place does not, by itself, warrant co-authorship of a scholarly paper or a publication. Nor should "gift" co-authorship be conferred on those whose only contributions have been to provide general support to the project.
  3. Although not qualifying as co-authors, individuals who assist the research effort may warrant appropriate acknowledgement in the completed paper.

Authorship Disputes

  1. Determinations of authorship roles are often delicate and potentially controversial. To avoid confusion and conflict, discussion of attribution should be initiated early in the development of any collaborative publication. For disputes that cannot be resolved amicably, individuals may seek the guidance of the Applied Research and Innovation Department and in particular the Executive Dean, the Research Development and Outreach Manager or the Research Operations Manager.

Disclosure of Research Funding and Other Support

  1. In all scientific and scholarly publications and all manuscripts submitted for publication, authors must acknowledge the sources of support for all activities leading to and facilitating the preparation of the publication or manuscript, including, but not limited to:
    1. Grant, contract and gift support;
    2. Technical or other support if substantive and meaningful to the completion of the project.

For questions or concerns regarding this policy, please contact the Policy Sponsor by phoning our main line 519-542-7751.