on August 5, 2011 by in Review, Comments (0)


Review written in 
June 2011
Funding base 
ORCID, Inc. is a non-profit organization dedicated to solving the name ambiguity problem in scholarly research and brings together the leaders of influential universities, funding organizations, societies, publishers and corporations from around the globe. The organization was formally incorporated in August 2010 in Wilmington, DE, USA. ORCID, Inc. is managed by a Board of Directors. Sponsorship calls have been issued as a means to attract funding. The founding sponsors are listed at http://www.orcid.org/sponsors The precise business model and fee structure for ORCID once a service is in operation is under discussion, however the Principles state “ORCID identifiers and profile data (subject to privacy settings) will be made available via a combination of no charge and for a fee APIs and services. Any fees will be set to ensure the sustainability of ORCID as a not-for-profit, charitable organization focused on the long-term persistence of the ORCID system.”

As of June 2011, over 200 organisations are participating in ORCID. Participants come from 36 different countries, most of them from the United States, United Kingdom, Germany, Australia, Canada, Spain or India. The following chart shows the distribution of participants by sector.

ORCID maintains a directory of participants at http://www.orcid.org/directory.

Thomson Reuters and Nature Publishing Group convened the first Name Identifier Summit in Cambridge, MA in November 2009, where a cross-section of the research community explored approaches to address name ambiguity. The ORCID initiative officially launched as a non-profit organization in August 2010 and is moving ahead with broad stakeholder participation. There is a roadmap
There are no public specifications as yet.
Not applicable; a beta version was available for testing on application
ORCID is of interest to all those who would like to use contributor identification in scholarly communications. “When the system launches, academic and non-academic researchers may use ORCIDs to more efficiently and accurately record and present their research profiles. Research institutions and universities may use ORCIDs to efficiently retrieve an unambiguous publication record of their researchers. Publishers may use ORCIDs to better track and organize manuscripts and research-related writings. Funding agencies may use ORCIDs to assess and track researchers and research projects over time.”
ORCID aims to solve the author/contributor name ambiguity problem in scholarly communications by creating a central registry of unique identifiers for individual researchers and an open and transparent linking mechanism between ORCID and other current author ID schemes. According to the Principles, Researchers will be able to create, edit, and maintain an ORCID ID and profile free of charge and Researchers will control the defined privacy settings of their own ORCID profile data.
ORCID holds participant meetings which are open to everybody about twice a year. The last meeting was held on May 18th in Harvard, US. The aim of the initiative is to represent a community effort that establishes an open, independent registry that is adopted and embraced as the industry’s de facto standard. The principles state that “ORCID will transcend discipline, geographic, national and institutional, boundaries” and “Participation in ORCID is open to any organization that has an interest in scholarly communications.” Another principle establishes that “ORCID will be governed by representatives from a broad cross-section of stakeholders, the majority of whom are not-for-profit, and will strive for maximal transparency by publicly posting summaries of all board meetings and annual financial reports.” Request for participation can be made through a registration form on the website. As of June 2011 there are no fees or obligations for participants; online registration will simply confirm that the organization has an active interest in this initiative. It is likely that fees will begin to be charged as of 2012 when the system is in production, at which time Participants will have the option to become users of the production system. Deposition of data and individual uses of the system will always be free.
Several organizations have agreed to contribute data sources and technologies to aid the initial development of the ORCID prototype, including: Researcher ID profile system from Thomson Reuters, author profiles from REPEC, Scholar Universe, Scopus, and bibliographic data from the CrossRef metadata database. In parallel, ORCID will be investigating and analyzing other contributor identification schemes and systems to determine how they can interoperate with this system. [from the ORCID website]
The chart shown above and the list of participants in the directory give an indication of the supporters of the ORCID initiative. As a service is not yet available the full picture of how many institutions and organisations will adopt the service is as yet unknown.
There is as yet no live service to support. A beta service is available and use of this service for demos has to be negotiated by contacting ORCID directly (as of June 2011).
The ORCID website has a news section. An RSS feed of ORCID News is also available. Interested individuals can also follow the ORCID Twitteraccount, Facebook page and LinkedIn group.
For participating organizations, the recommended way to stay in touch with latest developments is to visit the ORCID wiki. There is also a monthly newsletter for participants from 2011. The Business Working Group (BWG), Technical Working Group (TWG), Outreach Working Group (OWG) and Legal Working Group (LWG) support the ORCID Board. Involvement with these groups has to be made on request through a participating organisation.
The ORCID Principles are from http://orcid.org/principles and are copyright of ORCID.

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