Policy I-16

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This is an archived version of the policy. See the most recent version here


(Approved: BFC 2/19/08, 12/1/09)

Since the publication and dissemination of research and other scholarly and creative activity is a fundamental academic responsibility, appropriate recognition of credit for these activities is a significant concern to the University community. For the purpose of these guidelines the terms author and authorship refer to the production of scholarly works of any sort including, but not limited to; journal articles, books and book chapters, works of art, and performances. Indiana University cannot define rules for attribution for such works but the following guidelines are widely accepted:

• Credit for authorship is generally based on 1) substantial contributions to conception, design or execution of a work, or acquisition of data, or analysis and interpretation of data; 2) drafting the manuscript or revising a work critically for important intellectual content; and 3) final approval of the version published or otherwise disseminated. All authors should meet two or more of these conditions.
• All persons associated with a work who qualify for credit for it as described above should be publicly identified as an author of the work.
• Each author should have participated sufficiently in the work to take public responsibility for appropriate portions of it.
• When a large, multi-center group has conducted the work, the group should identify the individuals who accept direct responsibility for it. These individuals should fully meet the criteria for authorship defined above and be listed as authors.

The order in which authors are listed should be jointly decided by all co-authors in accordance with accepted practices in each field or discipline, which may include assessment of the relative contribution of each person. The best way to avoid disputes is to discuss this issue at an early stage of collaboration and to review those understandings as the project develops. While not required, schools and departments are highly encouraged to adopt and disseminate policies or guidelines on authorship that address the accepted norms for credit in their areas.

Policy for Dispute Resolution [Bloomington campus]

When co-authors cannot resolve disagreements about credit themselves, department chairs and/or center directors should intervene to mediate. If the chair or director claims co-authorship of the work, mediation may be delegated to an associate chair or senior faculty member within the department agreeable to the parties involved. If no resolution can be reached at this level, the matter should be forwarded to the dean(s) of the appropriate school(s) for mediation. Students may seek advice from the Student Advocates Office. If agreement cannot be reached, the matter will be referred to the Vice Provost for Faculty and Academic Affairs for a final decision.

The Vice Provost for Faculty and Academic Affairs may choose to arbitrate the disagreement through separate or collective discussions with the parties involved in the dispute. Alternatively, the Vice Provost for Faculty and Academic Affairs may select a committee of no fewer than three faculty members to arbitrate the dispute. If one of the parties in the dispute is a student or holds a non-faculty rank, the committee shall include no fewer than two students or non-faculty members, respectively. The majority of the committee shall be comprised of faculty who are actively engaged in research or creative activity, at least one of whom is outside the discipline(s) or area(s) of the co-authors in the dispute, and may include non-tenure-track faculty or administrators, as deemed appropriate by the Vice Provost for Faculty and Academic Affairs. This committee may receive written representations from all who claim to be co-authors in the dispute, and may elect to hear oral representations, but in that case all who claim to be co-authors must be given the opportunity to present their case. A majority decision of the committee will be reported to the parties through the Vice Provost for Faculty and Academic Affairs and stand as the final decision in the matter.

*** This statement shall not supersede any contract or negotiated agreement on behalf of the University, or other professional society requirements.

The occurrence of all disputes reaching the level of the school’s Dean or the Vice Provost for Faculty and Academic Affairs shall be reported to the Research Affairs Committee of the BFC, which shall provide an annual report to the Agenda Committee of the BFC.