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Credit local authors fairly on international research papers

Obasi, Angela ORCID:, Abimbola, Seye, Oriyo, Ndekya, Morton, Ben ORCID:, Vercueil, André and Masekela, Refiloe (2021) 'Credit local authors fairly on international research papers'. Nature, Vol 598, Issue 7881, p. 415.

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As co-signatories on a consensus statement released this week (see B. Morton et al. Anaesthesia doi: 10.1111/anae.15597; 2021), we call upon all scientific journals to adopt a similar system to promote fairness in author contribution assessments for research conducted in low-to-middle income countries (LMICs) by teams that include author(s) from institutions in high-income countries (HICs).

The system consists of a structured reflexivity statement that asks authors to answer a series of open-ended questions that broadly follow established authorship criteria (see These help to ensure that LMIC researchers and other disadvantaged groups such as women and early-career researchers are properly represented.

Progress in addressing such imbalances has been slow (A. I. Obasi Lancet 396, 651-653; 2020 doi:10.1016/S0140-6736(20)31536-1). For example, a fifth of papers on COVID-19 in Africa contain no African authors and, among those that do, HIC authors almost always occupy the coveted first and last positions (A. V. Naidoo et al. Br. Med. J. Glob Health 6, doi:10.1136/bmjgh-2020-004612; 2021).

Such reflexivity statements will encourage inclusive and open discussion of issues affecting equity, including capacity strengthening and research legacy in host countries.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: W General Medicine. Health Professions > W 21 Medicine as a profession.
WZ History of Medicine. Medical Miscellany > Miscellany Relating to Medicine > WZ 345 Medical writing and publishing. Historiography
Faculty: Department: Clinical Sciences & International Health > Clinical Sciences Department
Clinical Sciences & International Health > International Public Health Department
Digital Object Identifer (DOI):
Depositing User: Rachel Dominguez
Date Deposited: 10 Dec 2021 15:45
Last Modified: 19 Apr 2022 01:02


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