Quote from broughden
Thank you, that makes more sense. What was stated previously just sounded like editing work.
Although why the head of a lab should get author credit simply for running a school's lab, if they aren't providing real substantive input, still makes no sense.
We're not talking about people who are "simply ... running a school's lab," we're talking about senior researchers, academics who are well-known in their fields and have significant bodies of research, who are heads of major research programs. They have other professionals and students working under them in their primary research program. They mentor and lead those other researchers and research assistants, and they bring in the research funding that makes the program possible. It's common for the "underling" researchers to do smaller, individual research projects "on the side," often with data collected as part of the primary research project, and write up and publish those smaller projects. When that occurs, the primary researcher typically gets listed as a co-author, because s/he a) provided the funding that paid for the research being published, b) is doing the primary, "big," research the smaller project was "spun off" of, c) provided the researchers with the opportunity to be doing the research in the first place, and d) mentors and guides the researchers publishing the smaller project day in and day out over time. Do you have any experience with research universities? All of this is common.