• Responding to the prompt, “Describe how authorship of scholarly works has changed over the past 20 years. In what ways might authorship further evolve, and how could this impact upon the work of the information professional?”, this essay sets the context for literature on authorship order, explores the key themes that were prominent in reviewing the collected literature cited and consulted, and then discusses where the information professional’s role could be placed in this debate. The key themes highlighted in this essay are:

    • Navigating the debate and lack of clear guidance
    • Ensuring fairness and ethics
    • Equity for all
    • Many suggestions, but no clear solution

    Looking ahead, it is not certain whether there will be a clear solution or end to the authorship order debate, but it can be concluded that there will have to be newer and more considerations in developing a fair and effective solution. In addition, information professionals are uniquely placed to ensure that the researchers they support are continually informed of authorship guidelines, debates, current opinions, and developments. This can help ensure that however authors decide to order their names, authors can find some satisfaction knowing that they chose a method best fitting for their team.