Can phd students submit their paper on their own? I have finished writing and polishing my manuscript (with my advisor listed as the corresponding author) and then sent it to my phd advisor almost a year ago but still has gotten no response from him. I am wondering if I can say sth like 'if I don't hear from you in 2 or 3 weeks, I am gonna assume that you have no problem and I am gonna submit it myself". Is this legit? Will I get expelled? I have hearded many different answers and need some HELP here! Thanks!
Absolutely no, not legit. You need explicit consent from all the author listed to (attempt to) publish (=submitting for peer-review).
With no answer form your co-authors you may safely assume "you have not read the paper" and that's all you can assume from them.
But, you can submit on your own, as single author, no one is preventing doing that, you may be able "to bring people on board" during the review (there must be sound reasons to do that, but it is doable, if they are ok and they can strongly contribute plus you agree on having them on-board only for the second stage).
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Yes, I agree that removing an author means said author's contribution must be as well removed from the paper. That may lead to being unable to contribute the paper (how can you remove a co-author contribution if the co-author was the one showing and helping using an experimental machine?) or to big conflicts ("why did you not inculde me?"). If the paper still stands on its own, it is a big if.
Most likely, you can ask help to someone else in the faculty, or write the aggressive mail "if I don't hear from you in 2 or 3 weeks, I am gonna assume that you do not think your contribution is relevant and I am gonna submit it myself" and brace for the consequences (think and discuss an exit strategy, there is a world beyond and without your advisor).
If the name of someone is on your paper, he must agree with the content of the paper BEFORE it is submitted. The only way an author can agree with the submission is if he tells you that he agrees. Some journal will even require that all authors sign a document before submiting that clearly state that they agree (e.g. some Elsevier journals) or send an e-mail to all co-authors to ask them to verify that they agree (eg. some Springer/Elsevier journals).
If someone contributed to your paper (enough to be an author), you cannot remove his name from it without removing his contribution to the paper or getting his approval to use his contribution but without his name.
If you remove the name of your supervisor and submit a paper without his approval, it may cause you some problems (it depends on the context at your university/department or your relationship with the supervisor), so the best to avoid any problem is to talk with your supervisor about this situation. Try to meet him and explain the situation and ask him if he could do it faster or agree on some date, or if he would agree that you could submit it by yourself. Or maybe he will not agree and tell you that he thinks the manuscript is not ready... But discussing with your supervisor is what you should do, and perhaps in person is better than by e-mail.