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Author and Research Identifiers

Introduction to ORCID, ResearcherID and other identifiers used to disambiguate author names.

Scholarly Communications Librarian

Getting Started

About Author Identifiers

An author identifier is "a unique 'symbol' for an author that can be used to distinguish that person’s work from all others, regardless of any similarities of name, institution, or discipline" (Clara Y. Tran and Jennifer A. Lyon, 2017).

Authorship ambiguity can be a consequence of a number of factors. For example, a researcher might have a common name, might have previously published under a variation of a name (for example, used a middle initial), or might have a name charge as a result of marriage or divorce. By associating a paper with an author identifier, there is less uncertainty as to whether that publication is written by the Jane Smith at a university in Wyoming or the Jane Smith at a university in Ohio.