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I recently got a job at a new institution, and recently one of my papers is accepted for publication. At this juncture you are allowed to change your institution on the paper. However, all of the work was done while at my previous institution where I was a postdoc, so I feel like the paper should display that institution's name.

What is the etiquette in this case? Does this depend on subject area?

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  • This depends on the subject area. – Alexander Woo Jul 22 at 1:43
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Many journals allow you to include a "current address". If the journal that accepted your paper is one of these, then your affiliation should be your previous institution, where you worked on the paper, and your current address should be your new institution, where people can find you.

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  • If the bulk of the work was done at the old institution, use the old institution and simply add the new institution as a footnote. Thus:

    Zero the Hero, Tea Department, The Oily Way,

[as footnote on title page]:

current address: Inner Temple, The Milky Way

  • If the bulk of the work was done at the new institution, then add an acknowledgment:

Part of this work was done while Zero the Hero was a Master Builder at the old institution.

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If you no longer have an actual affiliation with the previous institution, you shouldn't claim that you have. One important use of affiliation is to make it easy for people to find you.

However, as you say, you owe them something for their support. An acknowledgement section, or even a footnote, is the place for this. "This work was done as a post-doc with the support of ...".

The two issues are separate.

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    This would be completely insufficient at places I know. Universities must show productivity based on the publications of their people. If the work was done at institution A, it should be the affiliation. When I finished my postdoc, they would surely be very angry, if I didn't use the old affiliation in the paper that described my results. I would beasically steal all the progress for the new institution. – Vladimir F Jul 22 at 16:46
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Usually when moving between two institutions I got a "guest appointment" for a few months (normally just to keep e-mail working while I move institutions). You could try and get that at your old place, then list both institutions as your affiliation. I've found that universities will easily hand out guest appointments (as it doesn't cost them anything) especially to people who just finished working at the University.

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You could just use a dual affiliation, while providing your current (new) institutional e-mail address if you are the corresponding author (or if all the authors should provide e-mail addresses).

If your old institution is paying for all related expenses (publication fees, or conference travel), you may add a footnote or similar saying "The majority of the work for this publication was done at University of Awesome").

If you are hoping your new institution will pick up the cost (as I know many will actually gladly do that in such cases), just use a plain dual affiliation.

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I wrote a paper while visiting xxx on sabbatical; the journal listed xxx as my affiliation.

This footnote followed:

On sabbatical leave from Bryn Mawr College. Present and permanent address: Department of Mathematics, College II, University of Massachusetts at Boston, Boston, Massachusetts

with no email address since this was in the days before email.

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