You are a company medical publication professional. A freelance consultant statistician is paid by the sponsor to undertake complex analyses for a study. These data are to be included in a manuscript and the statistician is invited to participate as an author so that the data can be appropriately described. The statistician agrees, but requests to be compensated for the time spent contributing to the manuscript (he/she cannot afford any non-chargeable time). This is not in line with your updated company policy that states compensation for authorship is not permitted.

What Would You Do?

  • Add the statistician as an author because it is an acceptable practice to pay fair market value for publication support, such as statistical analyses
  • Consult with legal as to whether an exception can be made to pay for the statistician’s time as an author and fully disclose the arrangement in the manuscript disclosures section
  • Compensate the statistician for his/her time, but only acknowledge his/her contributions because authorship would be against company policy
  • Transfer the work to an internal company statistician, who can take over authorship responsibilities; the freelance statistician can still be acknowledged

This poll is closed. Results will be posted in late October 2020.

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