Various members of the publishing and research community are collaborating to develop an open, independent identification system for scholarly authors which would become the industry standard. ORCID (Open Researcher and Contributor ID) aims to create a central registry of unique identifiers for individual researchers and an open and transparent linking mechanism between ORCID and other current author ID schemes. These identifiers and the relationships among them can be linked to researchers’ output and so enhance the scientific discovery process and improve the efficiency of research funding and collaboration within the research community.
ORCID’s mission is to resolve author-name ambiguity. The collaborators believe such resolution is essential for the transition to e-science. The disambiguation of authors' names would also allow stakeholders in scholarly communication to build new services for the research community.
Elsevier is among the close to 80 organizations that have joined the effort. The other participants include the ACM, AIP, British Library, CrossRef, EMBO, MIT Libraries, Nature Publishing Group, PLoS, SAGE Publications, Springer, Thomson Reuters, Wellcome Trust and Wiley-Blackwell.