Co-authorship guidelines that will be followed at the Molecular Structure Laboratory are in accord with American Crystallographic Association’s regulations and with co-authorship policies accepted at the majority of crystallographic laboratories.
If the structural information is a major part of the intellectual content of the paper, and if this information has been derived primarily by X-ray diffraction, then the crystallography should be included in the paper and the crystallographer should be considered for co-authorship. Most papers that include metric parameters (i.e. distances and angles), molecular drawing diagrams, and structural discussions would fall under this classification. I am encouraging collaborators to use my expertise in structural discussion (packing, hydrogen bonds, inter/intramolecular contacts, etc.), structure comparison, and database searching for relevant compounds. I will also assist in the preparation of, and review manuscripts that include my structural data. I would like the opportunity to review all papers that include structures solved by me before they are sent off for publication.
If crystallography is used only to confirm a structure that is well established by other means (NMR, mass spec, etc.), and if no structural details are given in the paper, only an acknowledgment is more appropriate. This would occur, for example, when the relative stereochemistry of an intermediate in a complex organic synthesis has been determined, or when the crystallographic experiment was routine and structural determination was straightforward. In such cases, the crystallographer would be willing to publish the structural results of the investigation in a crystallographic journal upon mutual agreement. An acknowledgement may also suffice in the cases when the X-ray experiment was standard and the structure solution straightforward. The decision will rest with the X-ray facility director.
The guidelines above are intended to help collaborators prepare manuscripts, facilitate their publication, and to protect the authors of manuscripts from errors in professional presentation of crystallographic results.