ORCID is an independent organization that maintains a registry of unique identifiers, called ORCID iDs, for researchers and scholars. The ORCID iD is a flexible persistent personal identifier which is not tied to employment at Northwestern but instead is intended to “travel with” a scholar throughout their career, enabling any organization with which they are affiliated to connect research information with that researcher. The ORCID iD helps to facilitate a complete record of activities by a scholar, regardless of name or organizational changes that may occur over the course of that scholar’s career.
Northwestern University is an institutional member of the Big 10 Academic Alliance ORCID consortium and our directory system is ready to start capturing ORCID identifiers (ORCID iDs). By becoming a member of ORCID, Northwestern can integrate the ORCID iDs of our researchers into our directory, and through that system, make those ORCID iDs available to a variety of the institution’s research information systems.
Publishers and funding agencies have increasingly employed ORCID as a tool to manage submissions and applications. When a researcher provides their ORCID iD in a grant proposal or a publication submission, for example, the item can be easily associated with that researcher. That linkage can be especially helpful for individuals with common names, ensuring that their scholarly output is correctly associated with them rather than another person with the same name.