I was so pleased to read this weekend of a new policy by the editorial board of the Journal of the American College of Radiology (JACR) to allow the journal's authors to change their names, in a simple, timely and confidential manner.
In an editorial in the November 2021 issue of JACR, JACR editor in chief Ruth S. Carlos, MD, MS and co-author Evelyn Carroll, MD announced the new policy. They note that journal authors may change their names for many different reasons. Transgender and gender-diverse individuals are particularly vulnerable when name changes are made in a public forum such as scholarly publications, which can draw attention to their gender.
Because legal name changes are not universally accessible, affordable, or expedient, many trans authors can be faced with abandoning their previous scholarship because of the numerous barriers to a successful name change in scholarly publication.
The JACR editorial board understands that a name change process should be simple, timely, and discrete, and the new policy they describe meets those requirements. For transgender scholars, they note, "discretion is of particular importance given the potential for discrimination and bias against this vulnerable group."
Kudos to JACR for its commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion.