Authorship Criteria 

All those who have made a substantial contribution to authorship of a work should be listed as authors, based on the following four criteria:

1. contribution to the conception or design of the work or the acquisition, analysis or interpretation of data for the work AND
2. contribution to drafting the work or revising it critically for important intellectual content AND
3. final approval of the version to be published AND
4. agreement to be accountable for all aspects of the work in ensuring that questions related to the accuracy or integrity of any part of the work are appropriately investigated and resolved.

Those who do not meet all four criteria should be acknowledged (see below). These authorship criteria are intended to reserve the status of authorship for those who deserve credit and can take responsibility for the work. The individuals who conduct the work are responsible for identifying who meets these criteria.

Principal authorship, the order of authors, and other publication credits should be based on the relative contributions of those involved, regardless of status. If a publication derives substantially from a student thesis/dissertation, that student is usually listed as principal author.

Corresponding author
The corresponding author takes primary responsibility for communication with the journal during submission, review and publication process, including all the journal’s administrative requirements connected to the article.

The contact details of the corresponding author should be published alongside the article, and they are available, post-publication, to respond to critiques of the work or requests for additional information.

Non-author contributors
Contributors who meet fewer than all 4 of the above criteria for authorship should not be listed as authors, but they should be acknowledged. Examples of activities that alone (without other contributions) do not qualify a contributor for authorship are acquisition of funding; general supervision of a research group or general administrative support; and writing assistance, technical editing, language editing, and proofreading.

Because acknowledgment may imply endorsement by acknowledged individuals of a study’s data and conclusions, editors are advised to require that the corresponding author obtain written permission to be acknowledged from all acknowledged individuals.


Derived in part from the ICMJE definitions of the role of authors and contributors.