From today (Wednesday 23 September 2015) , a digital identifier that distinguishes researchers – an ORCID iD – will become mandatory for all new NIHR personal award applications.
An ORCID iD is a Uniform Resource Identifier (URI) containing a unique 16-digit number, which is available to researchers through registering on the Open Researcher and Contributors ID (ORCID) repository; an open, not-for-profit, community-driven initiative to resolve authorship confusion in scholarly work. Researchers can use this unique identifier to correctly distinguish their publications and other research activities from others who may have the same, or similar, name.
Making the ORCID iD mandatory will introduce valuable distinguishable information and increase the effectiveness and accuracy of the analysis of outputs in order to demonstrate the impact of NIHR research. In the longer term, with the introduction of functionality to enable information to pass between the NIHR’s own information systems and ORCID, the NIHR will be able to reduce the administrative burden for researchers having to fill in the same information in multiple locations for applications and reports.
As more institutions and funders sign up to ORCID, the more effective it will become and the more efficient it will be in sharing information between these systems in order to speed up application and reporting processes.