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Research Funders Now Require ORCID IDs

September 3, 2019

In July, the NIH, CDC and the AHRQ (Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality) joined a growing list of organizations that have issued a policy around the use of ORCID iDs. Effective in FY2020, all researchers supported by NIH, AHRQ and CDC research training, fellowships, research education, and career development awards are required to register for an ORCID iD. As part of its mission to strengthen Drexel’s connections to scholarship, the Libraries offers support to help the Drexel community understand what this policy means for them and how ORCID iDs help researchers navigate scholarly communications. 

What is an ORCID iD?

ORCID iDs are unique, persistent digital identifiers assigned to individual researchers and authors that distinguish researchers from one another. ORCID iDs connect a researcher’s professional and scholarly activities, like published articles or dissertations, patents, artistic works and data sets.

These identifiers disambiguate individuals with similar names and track their work over time (even if the author’s name or affiliation changes). They also make it easier for other organizations and researchers to discover others’ research output and professional activities.

The Value of ORCID iDs for Funding Organizations & Publishers

Funders and publishers alike regularly face the challenge of gathering information about research activities across the world, and identifiers like ORCID iDs can streamline that process.

For funding organizations, ORCID iDs make it easier to compile grant applications, to improve the reusability of the information they collect, to ensure the accurate citation of an award (by pushing award information into ORCID records), and to recognize the contributions of reviewers. 

Similarly, publishers use ORCID iDs to disambiguate authors and to support name-based author searches.  Elsevier, Springer and Nature Publishing Groups—to name a few—require authors upload their ORCID profiles when submitting their manuscripts to expedite the submission process. With the author’s permission, publishers can automatically update the user’s ORCID profile with subsequent submissions. Publishers also use this information to process citation metadata and to find and evaluate peer reviewers.

Integrating ORCID iDs at Universities

Universities, including Drexel, also face challenges in identifying and promoting their researchers’ outputs, and they are turning to ORCID iDs to help identify, monitor and broaden the impact of this work.

At Drexel, the Libraries is a key stakeholder group that works to raise awareness of ORCID iDs across campus.

For example, Drexel librarians help faculty search for ORCID iDs in tools like Web of Science and Google Scholar and use that data to calculate author-level metrics for preparing documents for tenure and promotion. Similarly, librarians compile metrics about faculty research from an entire department – information that is often required for departments preparing for Program Alignment in Review or accreditation self-study.

Drexel librarians also provide general information about ORCID iDs. Librarians can help members of the Drexel community with everything from creating an ORCID identifier, making the profile public or uploading citation link information to their ORCID profiles.

The Drexel Libraries recommends all graduate students involved in research register for an ORCID ID when they begin their program to ensure their work is easily identifiable from the very start of their publishing and research careers.

How can I get an ORCID ID?

To register for an ORCID iD online, visit The registration process takes less than 30 seconds and is completely free.  

For more information about creating ORCID iDs and enhancing your ORCID profile, visit the Drexel Libraries’ ORCID research guide.