ABC of multiple authorship

BMJ 1995; 310 doi: (Published 13 May 1995) Cite this as: BMJ 1995;310:1236
  1. Grant L Hutchison

    From time to time someone's name appears at the head of a research paper to which they have had not the slightest input.1 There are many possible reasons for this. Perhaps the authors are members of a publication syndicate; or the accessory author is being complimented, or bribed; or the professor has exercised the modern day equivalent of droit de seigneur. One case is unique, however. It is widely known to those in the field and equally widely forgiven. To describe it adequately I must first introduce three physicists.

    Hans Bethe was born in Strasbourg in 1906 when the town was part of …

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