Mandating the use of Open Researcher and Contributor ID (ORCID) by submitting authors.

ORCIDORCID provides a unique identifier for all researchers that can be linked to their different research works and activities across multiple platforms. It also serves to distinguish authors with similar names and simplify searching of publications databases (such as PubMed, Scopus, etc.) to avoid retrieving articles by authors with similar names. Close to 1.8 million researchers have already created their ORCID iD. The service is non-profit and community driven.

From 1 January 2016, we will require the submitting author to provide an ORCID identifier as part of the manuscript submission process. Details of the practicalities will be provided shortly, but don’t worry, it takes less than a minute to register for an ORCID iD and it’s free of charge. A recent survey carried out by ORCID indicates strong support in the research community for mandates by publishers, funders, and universities.


Benefits of creating an ORCID iD

  1. It’s a time saver

ORCID provides a unique digital identifier, which distinguishes you from other researchers with similar names and also brings together any variant spellings of your name. It supports authentication across multiple journals, search engines and services, allowing you a single sign-on.

Up to now, each time you apply for a new grant, or register for a service (such as ResearchGate), you have had to re-enter all the same information in each system. Not only is this time-consuming, it also allows scope for errors. Once you have created an ORCID identifier and connected it with your publications, grants, and affiliations, your details will automatically be entered when using any compatible system.

  1. It provides cross-platform compatibility

More and more systems are building in ORCID support, which means you can now easily onnect your ORCID iD to your existing publications via interfaces with systems such as Crossref, EuropePMC, or Scopus. Furthermore publishers’ systems are now able to automatically update your ORCID record as you publish each new article, saving you the trouble of updating it manually.  A number of systems, including university profiles, library repositories, funder reporting, pull data from ORCID, meaning you will spend less time manually updating in these as well.

  1. Your privacy is protected

When you sign up for an ORCID iD you retain complete control and can set privacy settings on information in your record. For example, you can make some or all of your research works public whilst keeping other information (such as email addresses) private. You control which organizations have access to your record and which can add information.

  1. It helps to build reputations

Using an ORCID identifier helps to build your reputation by making research works much more visible to potential collaborators, funders and employers. Publication repositories are using ORCID iDs to enable search, and universities are using them to support updates of local profile systems. ORCID also enables connections with, datasets, grant applications, reviewer reports, etc., to build a complete picture of your research contribution.


We believe that ORCID is beneficial to researchers and good for science as a whole. We hope that other societies, publishers, and funders will follow suit, and encourage them to contact ORCID to discuss this further. Want to know more? Watch this video explaining how ORCID might benefit you.


3 Responses to “From January you’ll need an ORCID”

  1. Alex McKelvy

    Good to hear. Are there plans for retroactively adding ORC ID’s to previous publications?

    • Royal Society Publishing

      Royal Society Publishing

      No, not at present. We’ll bear it in mind for the future.