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Press release EGU and Copernicus announce new inclusive name change policy for all publications

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European Geosciences Union

EGU and Copernicus announce new inclusive name change policy for all publications

7 June 2022

MUNICH – Today the European Geosciences Union and our publishing partner Copernicus are announcing sweeping new changes, that will give our authors the ability to make vital alterations to their names in previously published scientific literature. This new policy will allow authors to retrospectively update previous publications with their current names, including conference abstracts, pre-prints and peer-reviewed articles.

Throughout their career many researchers have a need to change their name as it appears on published work for several reasons, from a need by transgender authors to change their first name to affirm their gender, to a change in marital status, to cultural name changes, or any other reason. With this new author name change policy, created in collaboration with our publishing partner Copernicus and with guidance from the EGU’s Publications Committee, Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Committee and Early Career Scientists, EGU aims to promote an increasingly inclusive publishing policy across all our official platforms, reflecting the lived experience of our members and authors.

“Inclusion and diversity are critical issues to ensure that the geosciences are producing research that is of the best quality,” said EGU’s Publications Committee chair, Barbara Ervens. “By instituting this new name change policy we are allowing our authors to choose the degree of disclosure that they are comfortable with and is appropriate for them, whilst maintaining an accurate scientific record. This was an important step for us to take, both at EGU and for our publishing partner Copernicus.”

Originally pioneered by the former chair of the Publications Committee Katja Fennel, the new name change policy benefited from in-depth consultation across our community. EGU President Helen Glaves comments, “With the adoption of this new policy, EGU recognises the role that scientific societies and publishers play in dismantling historical biases and ensuring greater inclusivity and representation. We encourage our community to continue to inform us about the ways that we as an organisation can support and promote Equality, Diversity and Inclusion within our Union, and beyond.”

Our new name change policy features three variations of name-change procedure that will be adopted, based on what kind of name change the author requires, regardless of their reason for changing their name.

1. Author requests first name change (cited), last name remains the same.
2. Author requests (cited) last name change, first name remains the same.
3. Author requests (cited) last name change, first name also changes or is removed.

Once the request for a name change has been made, the author will be able to choose the degree of linking of the former and current name that is present in the scientific literature, according to their own needs. Detailed information on the new name-change policy is available here.

More information

The European Geosciences Union (EGU) is Europe’s premier geosciences union, dedicated to the pursuit of excellence in the Earth, planetary, and space sciences for the benefit of humanity, worldwide. It is a non-profit interdisciplinary learned association of scientists founded in 2002 with headquarters in Munich, Germany. The EGU publishes a number of diverse scientific journals that use an innovative open access format and organises topical meetings plus education and outreach activities. Its annual General Assembly is the largest and most prominent European geosciences event, attracting more than 14,000 scientists from all over the world. The meeting’s sessions cover a wide range of topics, including volcanology, planetary exploration, the Earth’s internal structure and atmosphere, climate, energy, and resources. For more information, follow the EGU on Twitter and Facebook.

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Gillian D’Souza
Media and Communications Officer
European Geosciences Union
Munich, Germany


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