The September 1955 AAPG BULLETIN contained an article by Robert E. Megill and provided a demographic analysis of the AAPG membership. Megill has continued to educate and enlighten us for 50 years on the insights provided by his statistical analyses of data.
In the footsteps of the Master, I was inspired to compare the BULLETIN articles of 1955 with those of 2004.
The year of 1955 saw 71 technical articles published; 2004 recorded 77 papers. Very similar!
The largest difference? Papers from 1955 averaged 1.3 co-authors; 2004 articles had nearly treble the number of authors, averaging 3.5 per article.
(I almost can hear Bob Megill warning me about the difficulties of dealing with "fractional" authors.)
What is the meaning of this growth in multiple authorship of AAPG articles?
It suggests to me that we may need to see a brief description of each author's contribution to the publication, lest multiple authorship becomes an easy publication credit.