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Authorship in Transition
In this workshop, participants will join forces to analyze the main axes of transformation of authorship. Participants include experts on the topic of authorship, other key players in the scholarly authorship process (editors, publishers, reviewers, evaluators), and non-academic authors (performance artists, journalists, media specialists).
The workshop takes as a starting point the changing conditions and practices of authorship and the need to understand these in a grounded way. Various aspects of ‘new forms of authorship’ have been put forth by science and technology scholars, biomedical scientists, economists, natural scientists, and historians and philosophers of science. These include the role of professional ghost writers; the emergence of databases as main channels for scientific output; novel types of communication platforms, web-based reporting in social media and interactive websites; the increased role of software, instrumentation, and robots in the production of data and scientific manuscripts; inflated publication lists through repetition or extreme partition of output; and authorships as reward for institutional support or as expression of institutional hierarchies. Up to now, these aspects have not been brought together, nor were they mobilized to better understand the recurring crises of trust in scientists that are now part of daily news about science. We therefore combine them to ask: What does “authorship” mean in the 21st century?
The goal of the workshop is two-fold: to develop a new research program that systematically addresses the most fundamental transformations of authorship, and to formulate practical recommendations for those responsible for evaluating authorship.