Nursing Leadership

Nursing Leadership 14(1) January 2001 : 5-5.doi:10.12927/cjnl.2001.16329

Editorial: What is the Answer?

Dorothy M. Wylie


This issue of the Journal describes the outcomes of the spate of restructuring and downsizing that has occurred in recent years in the province of Ontario. Although the studies reported deal with one province, which came late into the process, I suspect the reports of other provinces across the country would be fairly similar.

The dissatisfaction and disillusionment of nurses is obvious and their concerns about patient care cannot be discounted, as newspapers regularly confirm. Answers to deal with the aftermath do not come quickly or easily, as nursing leaders (those who are left) are finding out. Many of the strategies to promote nursing established a decade ago-involvement in decision making, committees, educational opportunities and recognition, etc., have fallen by the wayside in the name of economies. Whether resurrecting these will be adequate is doubtful. The world and the nursing profession have moved along and our populations needs and wants have changed.

Donner and Wheeler describe one strategy to energize mid-career nurses and help them determine their future. This is a start, but many more are needed, as what is useful to one group of nurses may not fit all. New graduates may demonstrate other needs and renewed creativity will be required to attract young people to the profession as a career.

What is next? Does anyone out there have the answer? Reading our series of history of nursing articles helps to realize nursing has been struggling for years in an uphill battle. When is the battle won and the status of nurses and nursing less fragile and liable to the whim of politicians, administrators and medical staff? Do you have any answers, if so, please share them with us.

Multiple Authorship: Who are the Real Authors?

Collaboration in research and multidisciplinary investigations make the question of authorship more complex these days. The Canadian Medical Association Journal (CMAJ) raised this question in the 19 September, 2000 issue, in the article "Who wrote this paper anyway? This issue is coming to light in nursing journals as well, as the list of authors is becoming increasingly long. In May 2000, the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE), also called the Vancouver Group, revised its statement on authorship to read:

Authorship credit should be based only on:
  1. substantial contributions to conception and design, or acquisition of data, analysis and interpretation of data;
  2. drafting the article or revising it critically for important intellectual content; and
  3. final approval of the version to be published.

Conditions 1, 2, and 3 must all be met. Acquisition of funding, the collection of data, or general supervision of the research group, by themselves do not justify authorship.

The paper goes on to say the creativity and originality of the article are what makes an author, and where credit is due. Credit, along with assuming responsibility for what is written, are the attributes of authorship. New ICMJE criteria require that:

Each author should have participated sufficiently in the work to take public responsibility for appropriate portions of the content. One or more of the authors should take responsibility for the integrity of the work as a whole, from inception to published article.

CMAJ has been collecting information from authors on their specific contribution to an article since 1998. They now require statements about authorship which will be published along with the other article. CJONL does not intend to institute this practice, nor to collect information on degree of authorship.

We do ask that the principal author assume responsibility for assuring that each author cited has made a valid contribution to the work. Our policy is to trust that assurance and cite only legitimate authors, others can be recognized in an acknowledgement.
The Editor.

About the Author(s)

Dorothy M. Wylie,


Hoey, John. (19 September, 2000). Who wrote this paper anyway? JAMC, 163(6), 716-7.

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