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047. What are cooperator publications and how are they addressed in FSP?


Cooperators are entities that mutually address research questions with the USGS, most often through funding our work. Cooperator publications are one outlet for releasing the results of such endeavors. Cooperator publications are released in full by the cooperating entity in a publicly accessible location (such as an established publications page on the cooperator's website), are clearly a cooperator's product and not a USGS product, and usually are part of a named (and perhaps numbered) series that can include interactive web-based publications. All cooperator publications must meet USGS standards for release of material to the public (refer to SM 502.4) and therefore cannot be a private communication to the cooperator, except in the case of other Federal agencies when alternatively a USGS Restricted-File Federal Interagency Report would be permissible. A cooperator publication is thus under the auspices of another entity and is USGS work that would otherwise be published as a USGS publication series product (for example, an Open-File Report, Scientific Investigations Report, or Circular. As with all USGS products, cooperator publications must receive at least two peer reviews, reconciliation, supervisory and science center approvals, and Bureau approval before release (SM 205.18). Importantly, except for collaborator/partner courtesy reviews (including the required disclaimer statement) permitted prior to, during, or immediately after the peer review, the product cannot be given to the cooperator for distribution until Bureau approval is obtained. These products, designated 'cooperator publications' in the IPDS, sometimes are not edited by the cooperating entity; hence, care must be taken to properly prepare such products for publication by the cooperator to maintain USGS standards for quality. A short training module explaining FSP requirements for cooperator publications and other product types is available at FSP for Authors of Other Information Products.