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More than one-third of Cochrane reviews had gift authors, whereas ghost authorship was rare

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  1. Ecological momentary assessments (EMAs) did not improve responsiveness of patient-reported outcomes on quality of life

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  2. Half of Cochrane reviews were published more than 2 years after the protocol

    Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

  3. Unlike ROC analysis, a new IRT method identified clinical thresholds unbiased by disease prevalence

    Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

  4. Machine learning algorithms performed no better than regression models for prognostication in traumatic brain injury

    Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

  1. Long-term mortality in the Intermediate care after emergency abdominal surgery (InCare) trial - a post-hoc follow-up study

    Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

  2. Group authorships in Cochrane had low compliance with Cochrane recommendations

    Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

  3. Half of Cochrane reviews were published more than 2 years after the protocol

    Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

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Objectives: To determine the prevalence of gift and ghost authors in Cochrane reviews and to investigate possible predictors of gift authorship. Study Design and Setting: An Internet-based survey was sent in April 2019 to 1,226 first authors of Cochrane reviews published between October 2016 and December 2018. Three reminders were sent. Responses were anonymized before data extraction. Results: A total of 666 of 1,226 (54%) first authors completed the survey. The prevalence of gift authors was 41% and 2% reported ghost authorships. Of the first authors, 15% were not aware of the authorship criteria from the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors. In a multivariable analysis, factors associated with the existence of gift authorship were: first author was not aware of the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors authorship guidelines (odds ratio (OR) 2.08, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.23–3.51, P = 0.006), increasing number of authors (P < 0.001), and first author had offered an inappropriate authorship previously in their academic career (OR 1.96, 95% CI 1.23–3.13, P = 0.005). Conclusion: A substantial proportion of Cochrane reviews showed evidence of gift authorship, whereas ghost authorship was less prevalent. Thus, there is a need to increase awareness of this persistent issue in Cochrane reviews.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Clinical Epidemiology
Volume128
Pages (from-to)13-19
Number of pages7
ISSN0895-4356
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 8 Aug 2020

    Research areas

  • Authorship, Editorial policies, Guidelines as topic, Methods, Surveys and questionnaires, Systematic reviews as topic

ID: 60646133