Authorship, collaboration, and predictors of extramural funding in the emergency medicine literature

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ObjectivesThe objectives of the study were to examine the last decade of general emergency medicine (EM) literature published in the United States for trends with regard to authorship and multidisciplinary collaboration and to estimate the effect on extramural funding.MethodsPrint articles published in the Academic Emergency Medicine, Annals of Emergency Medicine, Journal of Emergency Medicine, and American Journal of Emergency Medicine between 1994 and 2003 were reviewed. Original research, case reports/series, and others (consensus/educational) were considered; abstracts, book reviews, and editorials were not. The author byline was reviewed for number, specialty, nationality, collaboration, and presence of extramural funding. Multidisciplinary collaboration was defined as authors from 2 or more specialties, whereas multi-institutional collaboration was defined as EM authors from more than one institution. Logistic regression was used to identify predictors of extramural funding from the variables collected.ResultsOf 5728 articles identified, there were 3278 (57%) original research, 1437 (25%) case reports/series, and 975 (17%) classified as others. The percentage funded was 22% for all articles (32% for original research). The literature had at least one EM investigator as coauthor 84% of the time. Article location of origin was the United States (63%), foreign (15%), and combined (22%). Multidisciplinary collaboration increased overall from 33% in 1994 to a high of 43% in 2003. Multi-institutional collaboration also increased from 16% in 1994 to 26% in 2003. The percentage of articles having 6 or more authors increased from 12% to 18% over the decade. Of all variables studied, only article type (original research: odds ratio, 4.8; 95% confidence interval, 4.0–5.6) and foreign source (non–United States: odds ratio, 1.3; 95% confidence interval, 1.1–1.5) predicted extramural funding.ConclusionsThe number of authors per article in the EM literature has steadily increased over the last decade, as has evidence of collaboration with other specialties. This increase in collaboration and author number has not been associated with increased extramural funding in the general EM literature published in the United States.

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