new names in theses

Wolfgang Wuster w.wuster at BANGOR.AC.UK
Wed Jan 10 16:42:27 CST 1996

On Wed, 10 Jan 1996, Robert Mill wrote:
> Indicating future intent by Genus sp.nov. 1, Genus sp.nov. 2 etc. as
> proposed by Wuster seems to me to raise more problems than it
> solves. What is to stop someone consulting the thesis, before its
> author has got round to validly publishing the intended names, from
> giving sp.nov. 1 etc. names that the author of the thesis did not
> intend?? (You might even have a situation where a "pilferer" names
> the sp. after the person that wrote the thesis!!). Indeed, if two or
> more people consult the thesis you could theoretically end up with
> two or more different valid names for the same taxon and you'd then
> have to work out which was correct under the priority rules.

I guess it depends on whether you are more worried about deliberate
pilfering or about inadvertent use of a new name.

In any case, this discussion emphasises the need for PhD students to
publish new species as soon as possible after finishing their theses, or,
even better, before even submitting their theses.
Wolfgang Wuster
School of Biological Sciences, University of Wales, Bangor, UK
e-mail: w.wuster at

Thought for the day: If you see a light at the end of the tunnel,
it is probably a train coming your way.

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