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Author on Call

The function of the “Author on Call” blog is to allow our readers and authors to interact with each other in a unique way. A few select authors will be chosen to share on the blog aspects of their papers that were especially meaningful to them personally or points that may not have made it into their published report. Readers will then have the opportunity to provide comments and questions, to which the authors will respond.

At times, as seen in our first entry, we will also post separate entries to the blog on various special topics that we feel would be informational or that we welcome your feedback on.

Tuesday, May 1, 2018

ANNOUNCEMENT: CRediT and revised authorship guidelines

​We write to you today to share with you an important change in our authorship policy and processes. This change formally began simultaneously with the publication of our current issue of the journal (Volume 41, Issue 3).  In this issue, we included an editorial entitled 'Giving Credit Where Credit is Due,' in which we discuss revised author guidelines and the integration of the CRediT program in our online manuscript submission process. The CRediT program reflects the new opportunity to designate, when fitting, the assignation of more than one first author and more than one senior author. It also reflects a new approach to designate credit to each author for unique essential contributions to the paper.  We are providing the editorial below for your review, along with thoughts from some Editorial Board Members and peer reviewers on these changes. 

  • Patsy Yates, Editorial Board Member: Great idea - your editorial makes a very good case for why we need better ways to recognise the changing nature and complexity of team science.  Such a process will be useful for team members to understand various contributions to a paper.  Are there many other journal editors taking this approach?   I note you will have a process for assessing authors' justification for equal contributions. The communication about this option will be important to ensure it is used appropriately. Thanks for your commitment to ensuring the journal remains relevant to contemporary nursing science.
  • Pam Hinds, Editor-in-Chief: Sincere thanks for your comments, Patsy. There are indeed other journals following this path; most are from the basic sciences.  Your important point about communication is our driving force at this moment.
  • Roberta Woodgate, Editorial Board Member:  I agree with Patsy 100%.
  • Ruth McCorkle, Editorial Board Member:  Yes, I agree, this is a wonderful exchange. It's so challenging in this time of rapid electronic advances. Authors today need as much recognition as we can give them for their reviews and promotions.  Thanks for working so hard on bringing clarity to these issues.
  • Barb Given, Editorial Board Member:  I agree and support this.  Most places where we or our research team publishes are now having more and more determine contributions to pubs.
  • Pam Hinds, Editor-in-Chief: This is so helpful, Barb. Would this influence your choice of places to publish?
  • Barb Given, Editorial Board Member:  We actually look at what journals we publish in and what luck we have had in the past with citations.   So if a journal has led to numerous citations for our work we consider that; sometimes it would depend on the first author and what is needed for their career.
  • Mitsue Maru, Editorial Board Member:  Thank you very much for bringing up this important issue and delivering a clear answer.  I agree with Patsy as well.   I hope these guidelines will help authors.
  • Christine Miaskowski, Editorial Board Member: I concur.
  • Winnie So, Editorial Board Member:  Thanks Pam for taking such a good initiative of revising the author guidelines, which is in line with the development of nursing and health science. I totally agree that recognition of more than one author should be made when they share the same significant contributions to cancer nursing research, especially for the multisite / cross regional studies. I would like clarify the meaning of 'last / senior author':- is the last / senior author equivalent to corresponding author? I tried check it from the author guideline (, but could not find its meaning. I think some places put more credit weighting on corresponding authors regardless the order of authorship. For the new author guidelines, would Cancer Nursing allow more than one corresponding author?
  • Pam Hinds, Editor-in-Chief:  Winnie posed a most important question regarding the role of the corresponding author and the view of this role held by our journal.  From the Cancer Nursing journal perspective, we are offering clear distinctions about the first and the senior (last) authors. We purposefully do not offer a statement specifying the corresponding author. There is guidance offered in the ICMJE section on authorship credit and in general, we as do many other journals, operate within this guidance. The corresponding author in our view is not necessarily the first or the senior author although indeed it does tend to be one or the other. In addition to the ICMJE guidance, we have noted a practical basis for the decision about this role. With exits from one setting and beginnings of new roles seeming to be common for authors, study teams are likely to choose a member of the team who is in a stable position to manage requests and queries that may come from the readers of the published article. The corresponding author needs to be the point person for the publisher, editor, and readers and consistently available throughout the prepublication time period and the period immediately following publication.
  • Changrong Yuan, Editorial Board Member:  It is a very important topic and thank you for bringing up this issue and delivering a clear answer.  I do agree with them as well.
  • Chia-Chin Lin, Editorial Board Member:  Many thanks for this well put guideline.  It is important nowadays to remind authors that all authors of a published work are to be fully accountable for its content.  This guideline will improve the clarity about authorship in such a complicate and rapidly changing society.  Your leadership on making Cancer Nursing a highly impact journal is much appreciated.
  • Ayla Gürsoy, Editorial Board Member:  Thank you very much for taking such a good and important issues. I totally agree with Patsy. This change in the order of authors will give a different dimension to team work. In particular, authors whose equivalent contribution will protect their rights will also change the preference rate for our manuscript submissions. I would like to mention that I was very impressed with this idea.
  • Julia Challinor, Peer Reviewer:  Thanks for including the link explaining CRediT. It is clear about how it functions. I think CRediT will definitely add transparency to the complex authorship determination and ordering processes for manuscripts submitted to Cancer Nursing. 
  • Sharleen H. Simpson, Peer Reviewer: I think the CRediT goal is extremely important, especially for those in academia.  University educators and researchers are held hostage by "publish or perish" standards.  But in fact, it is pretty nearly impossible these days to accomplish significant research without a strong team, all of who need to be recognized for their efforts for reasons related to promotion and or tenure.  Colleagues may be reluctant to be involved in research if their contributions are not recognized, but without them the research will not be as valuable.  Sometimes deciding who will be the senior author can be a political issue rather than an issue of who should be there.  If writers can be recognized for their unique contributions within the paper, that should help somewhat.  I am not sure how this will play out in an actual manuscript, but I assume we will be seeing examples of this soon.

Please also take a moment to review our revised author guidelines. In them, we are very excited to introduce a new document entitled "How to avoid the most common formatting errors." It is our hope that this document will be helpful to authors as they prepare to submit their manuscripts to our journal.

As always, you are most welcome to contact us to share with us your own comments or concerns on any of these updates.