[csaa-forum] collaborative publications

Jon Stratton J.Stratton at curtin.edu.au
Mon Sep 1 12:51:27 CST 2014

 Hi All,
    I'm wondering what opinions are on what is enough work to legitimately claim joint authorship for an article/chapter.  Increasingly we in Humanities are being asked by our universities to publish jointly, either with our doctoral students or with our Research Assistants, or indeed with each other.  This, we are constantly told, is what happens in the sciences and we are enjoined to behave similarly.  I have assumed that this is supposed to increase our research output.  

Now, in the sciences, as I understand it, joint publication is relatively straightforward.  A senior staff member develops a project on which s/he employs one or more RAs or postgrads.  The results are then published under all their names with, most likely, the senior staff member having her/his name first as lead author.

In Humanities things are different.  So, how much work by one person, say the staff member, constitutes enough of a contribution for her/him to be included as an author?  For example, would doing one or more Track Changes on an article/chapter be enough?  What about if the idea for the article is the staff member's?  Would a first drafting, or redrafting be what is required?  What about suggesting the most appropriate journal to send the article to, and helping the RA/postgrad through the submission and, maybe, the revision process?  Or, perhaps, simply the fact of employing the RA on a project where funding has been obtained by the staff member--which might equate with being the supervisor for a postgrad submitting an article?  Or, what combination of these things?  

Because collaborative work has been so rare in the Humanities there seems to be no normative rules for what is the appropriate amount of input.  I am wondering how colleagues are dealing with this relatively new situation.

many thanks,

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