Scientific Publishing Organizations and National Laboratories Partner on Transgender-Inclusive Name-Change Process for Published

Name Changes Allow Researchers of All Genders to Own Their Full Body of Work

All seventeen U.S. national laboratories and many prominent publishers, journals, and other organizations in scientific publishing announced today the beginning of a partnership to support name change requests from researchers on past published papers. Global research and education leader Wiley is proud to be among the participating institutions. Publishing 1,900+ academic journals, Wiley was one of the first publishers to implement an inclusive author name change policy in December 2020, which has since been used by more than 65 authors.

This agreement will allow researchers who wish to change their names to more easily claim work from all stages of their careers; it specifically addresses the administrative and emotional difficulties some transgender researchers have experienced when requesting name changes associated with past academic work.

Previously, individual researchers shouldered the burden, administratively and emotionally, of initiating name change requests with each publisher of their past papers. Many publishers have been independently updating their own policies to address an increasing number of name change requests.

This partnership streamlines these previously ad hoc processes and offers an official validation mechanism to all involved by enabling researchers to ask their respective institutions to pursue name changes on their behalf directly with the publishers and journals.

For researchers of all genders, and transgender researchers specifically, the new process ensures they can rightfully claim ownership of prior work without fear of reprisal under their lived name and be known in their respective fields primarily through their merits as published authors.

As several researchers have attested, having their names updated on previous publications allows them to best represent their full suite of accomplishments. The ability to claim the volume of their work over time has significant implications for maintaining prominence in their area of research and for receiving credit for their academic impact.

The partnership between the national laboratories, major scientific publishers, journals, and other organizations represents a commitment to creating a more inclusive culture in STEM fields and STEM publishing in particular. The participating national laboratories will facilitate requests for name changes for any reason, including religious, marital, or other purposes, where supported by the policies in place at our publishing partners.

The seventeen national laboratories across the United States are pursuing this work in alignment with their respective diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives, not as a result of any federal policy changes, and welcome new partners as the effort advances. Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) is coordinating the effort.

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