How do I report to ResearchGate that a researcher has passed away?
If you know a researcher who has recently passed away, you can report it to us by following these steps:
- When logged into ResearchGate, visit the researcher's profile
- Click the downward-arrow next to the More button on the top-right of their profile, and select Report Profile
- Select Deceased researcher and provide some further information, ideally a link to an online obituary or notice on their institution's website.
If you do not have a ResearchGate account, then you can contact us and include the following details:
- The name of the researcher
- The URL of their ResearchGate profile
- A link to their obituary and/or notice on their institution's website
As soon as we can confirm the report we will remove the researcher’s personal contact information from their profile and prevent them from appearing in notification emails you and your colleagues may receive in the future. You might still see them appearing in your notification emails if their work is published after their passing.
What happens to the ResearchGate profile of a deceased researcher?
Once we confirm the report we receive, we will make a few changes to the deceased researcher’s profile.
We deactivate all notifications being sent to the email address of the deceased and stop pending invitations going out in their name. Additionally, we remove all sensitive contact information from their profiles so that it is not publicly visible. Other researchers will still be able to follow, download and view their work, and see their answers in Q&A.
It's not possible to transfer ownership of or grant access to a deceased researcher's ResearchGate account to another person.
How can I request the deletion of a deceased researcher’s account?
We can delete the account of a deceased researcher in cases where we are contacted by an executor of the researcher or someone with the necessary authority to make such a request, such as a power of attorney.
To help us confirm that you have the necessary authority, you will need to provide proof that the researcher has passed away (e.g., online obituary, a scanned obituary from a local newspaper) and proof of authority (e.g., last will and testament, power of attorney).
When submitting documentation, please cover up any personal information we don’t need to see in order to fulfill your request.
If the information on the documentation you provide matches the information on the researcher’s account, we will then delete the account.