I have attended many presentations where one person is presenting work that was completed by multiple people. In most of these presentations, the presenter listed the names of each coauthor in a different way. For instance, two common styles I have seen are:

presentation slide with presenter's name first and coauthors listed underneath

presentation slide with presenter's name listed in bold at the same level as coauthors' names

Is there a proper (or more polite, or generally accepted) way to list the names of coauthors in a presentation?

  • Related if not duplicate: academia.stackexchange.com/q/66657/20058 May 1, 2018 at 18:42
  • The format is usually given by the conference organisers. And should be, too, it's very stupid and a waste of time that you, and everybody else, should have to wonder what the order of names means.
    – Karl
    May 1, 2018 at 20:42
  • 1
    @Karl I've never seen a conference giving the format of a presentation. Do you have any example? May 1, 2018 at 21:14
  • @MassimoOrtolano Not the presentation, but for the abstracts. And you'd usually confer those, wouldn't you?
    – Karl
    May 1, 2018 at 21:22
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    @Karl Many conferences don't have abstracts, but short or full papers and the presenter is not specially marked (also because they might be unknown at the time of submission). And in any case most people would use a different style in the title slide of the presentation. May 1, 2018 at 21:25

3 Answers 3


Both styles are widely in use, at least in my field (computational mathematics). A common variant is that the presenter's name is underlined rather than in bold.

I don't perceive a difference between the two --- it's not like one of them feels "more polite" than the other. Just choose one, and don't overthink it. :)


What I see a lot is a slide titled "Acknowledgments". Can either be position 2 or at end. I slightly prefer position 2, since you're not rushed, but at the end, can also make sense.

I would leave the title slide clean with the name of the presentation and the presenter (and perhaps an image or an explanatory subtitle). When you do an actual journal publication (even conference proceedings), it is obvious who the authors are and typically first author placement for main worker. A presentation is not a publication (it should have more explanatory material). And the others are not "co authors".

It is nice if you can mention a little of the contributions of the different people as you go through the acknowledgements slide: "Jane did the electrical measurements, Bob did the X-ray, Pete is my advisor, and NSF funded the project". (This is if you are main researcher). If you are the PI and a student did the main work and/or the slides, it is graceful to verbally let the audience know that.

  • People mentioned in acknowledgments are usually not (only) coauthors. Also depeding on the field the first author might not be the one who did most work and you can definitely have coauthors in a presentation. If someone did a significant part of the research and provided the data for the presentation then he should be considered an author.
    – user64845
    May 1, 2018 at 21:02

It's not a scientific article, where you should worry about such things. Normally, nobody follows certain strict protocols when it comes to listing authors' names in presentation.

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