Belonging is one of our core values. We aspire for everyone who works at and with our organization to feel valued and included. This commitment extends to the creators of the journal articles, books, research reports, and other works that we preserve and make accessible through JSTOR.
We would like to offer support to those authors who decide to change their name—for any reason. We have developed a policy that balances our role as archivists of the historical record with our support for authors who want their names to accurately reflect their identity. We have also taken into account that most of the content on JSTOR is in image (PDF) + OCR format.
Our approach will be to add the author’s current/correct name to the metadata for the work (appearing as a separate name in addition to the former name) so the work will be recognized and discoverable on JSTOR and in outside search services under both the current/correct and former name. The benefit of including both names is that the work remains discoverable whether a user has an older or current citation or is searching under any author’s former name.
For authors who wish to minimize the appearance of their former name in their work, such as for transgender authors, in consultation with them, we will remove the former name (or a portion of the name, such as a first name) from the metadata and block the same from the image (PDF) of the work.
We will also remove the former name from the article OCR so it will not appear in text searches. Depending on the type of content, this may require receiving updated files from the publisher. In our discussions with authors, we will ensure that prior to taking this action, they understand the potential impacts on discoverability of the work.
Before taking any steps to change an author’s name, we will notify and collaborate with the relevant contributing publisher(s) to ensure our approach is compatible with their own.
Publishers should let us know when they receive author name change requests for content also held by JSTOR so that we can work together to support authors. Notices can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org
Authors who would like to make a name change request directly with JSTOR should send the request to email@example.com.
Please reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org with questions about this policy.