Adding Employment Affiliations to ORCID Records

These workflows set out a process by which an ORCID member, such as a research institution, can integrate with the ORCID API. It gives a walkthrough of the process of collecting authenticated ORCID iDs from your researchers, retrieving data from their ORCID records, adding their affiliation with your organization to their ORCID records, and updating records which you have previously added.

These workflows are for any organization interested in acknowledging formal employment between an individual and their organization, paid or unpaid. 

Introduction

Workflows

Documentation

Introduction

As a research organization, you are in a unique position to connect validated, trustworthy information about your researchers and their affiliation with you to their ORCID records. This enables you to take control of how your name is used in the research literature, ands allows you to easily keep track of former staff, students, and faculty.  It makes it simple for your researchers to share accurate and authoritative information about their affiliation with your institution when applying for grants, publishing an article, book, or database, and more.

An employment affiliation appears on an ORCID record like this:

What information do Employment assertions contain?

All affiliation sections use the same set of metadata in the API:

  • Organization name*
  • Organization city*
  • Organization region
  • Organization country*
  • Organization ID (Ringgold, GRID or LEI)*
  • Role/Title
  • Department 
  • URL 
  • Start date
  • End date
  • An external persistent identifier describing the affiliation 

*Indicates a required field. 

Workflows

There are two generalized workflows for adding affiliation assertions: by collecting ORCID iDs within your systems at registration or within the users profile pages; or by emailing existing users and asking them to connect their iD to your system.  Both have three components: authenticate, connect, and display.

Workflow 1: Collecting iDs within your systems

In this scenario, ORCID iDs are a requirement of your research management/HR system.  Researchers are asked to authenticate their ORCID iD and grant your organization permission to interact with their record.  Once they have registered, your system updates the appropriate section of their ORCID record with details of their employment, connecting them with your organization. The researcher’s ORCID iD should be displayed alongside any publicly available information about them such as their profile page. 

Workflow 2: Collecting iDs retrospectively

If your system already contains information about your researchers and their past activities, or if there is no registration component, you can instead email individuals a unique link they can use to connect themselves with your system.  When clicked, this link directs them to ORCID to authenticate their iD and grant your organization permission to update their record. It then redirects the researcher to a specially created web page you provide.  Your system stores the link between the ORCID iD and email address/user account, and uses the permissions the researcher has granted to update the appropriate section of their ORCID record, connecting them and their activity with your  organization. Again, if the organization provides public information about the people they work with, then the ORCID iD should be displayed alongside the user record on your system.

Affiliation dates for employment

Affiliation assertions contain start dates and end dates, and we strongly encourage you to populate these fields, where possible, as this makes verification of their affiliation with your organization easier. The workflows above enable long-term update permissions, which can be used to update the end date via the ORCID API when an individual’s affiliation finishes, in order to make the full term of their affiliation with you clear.

Documentation

Authenticate

It is critical that you collect ORCID iDs and obtain permission to read and update ORCID records, by first prompting users to sign into ORCID from within your system, and then retrieving their data from the ORCID Registry using the ORCID API. It is also essential to provide information within your system about why you are collecting ORCID iDs and why this is beneficial to your users.

You must provide a hyperlinked ORCID-branded button for collecting authenticated ORCID iDs: This can be at sign-in, within the researcher’s personal profile, or in a customized email to a researcher. Using an ORCID-branded button consistently helps ensure that researchers associate it with being asked to securely provide their iD, which in turn builds trust in ORCID as a reliable identifier.

Technical documentation

Connect

You can help your researchers get credit for their invited positions and distinctions by connecting validated information about their affiliation with you to their ORCID records. At the same time, you will be helping to build trust in scholarly communications. By asserting the connection between individuals and your organization -- connections that only your organization can make authoritatively -- you ensure that your organization is appropriately acknowledged when your employees and affiliates make professional contributions. That information can then be shared, with the researcher's permission, with the other systems they interact with, helping to create a trustworthy research information infrastructure.

Adding information to ORCID records involves sending formatted data to the ORCID Registry using the ORCID API, and saving the put code that the ORCID Registry returns for each item. Doing this requires that you have collected both ORCID iDs and update permission as described in Authenticate above.

Technical documentation

Display

Displaying ORCID iDs clearly signals to your users that your system supports ORCID. It requires you to have collected validated ORCID iDs from researchers as described above in Authenticate. To complete the Display process:

Once a researcher has connected their ORCID iD to your system, publicly display their iD on their profile within your system so that they know that they have successfully connected and asserted their iD. Format the iD as a hyperlinked URI and include the green iD icon, per our iD Display Guidelines. Also include the authenticated iD in any metadata sent to third-party services when applicable. 

ORCID iD iconhttps://orcid.org/0000-0001-2345-6789

Technical documentation

Technical documentation, including examples, is available for the above workflows. Our support team is here to help if you have any questions.
End user documentation is also available, which shows these sections from a record owner’s perspective.