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Contributors to the Tree of Life: Authors

The duty of an author is to write a Tree of Life page. Pages that are works in progress can be added to the ToL with an "under construction" status. In order for a ToL page to be considered "complete", it is usually reviewed by a coordinator (who will serve as an associate editor) and by a ToL editor.

An author of a page will generally participate in the coordination of the pages for the subgroups on that page. See the Coordinators page.

For those of you who will be contributing to the Tree of Life, or wish to contribute, please be sure to register!

Expectations of an author

An author or collection of authors should have:

We encourage collaborative efforts. If a single author does not meet these requirements, several authors who collectively do should be selected. Familiarity with computers is a bonus, as is access to illustrations of the organisms.

Issues to consider in choosing authors

Deciding who should be included as authors on a page is not always easy. Below are some of the considerations that coordinators should use in selecting authors, and that lead authors should use in selecting coauthors. As always, these issues are most important on trunk pages of the Tree.

The detailed discussions on this page suggest that author choice is a messy business, fraught with difficulties. In practice, it seems not to be so complex. Most communities, after a little thought, seem to be having a reasonably easy time sorting out who will contribute.

(The current format for choosing authors and their contributions is likely somewhat temporary and will evolve as the Tree develops. There will surely be some changes when peer-review is implemented. )