Managing Expectations: authors and the Cochrane Collaboration

The Cochrane Collaboration Steering Group has recently approved and published a policy document on “Managing Expectations”, which sets out what skills systematic review authors are expected to have, and what help they can expect from their Review Group, Centre or Field.

Broad expectations of author teams include:

  • Teams should have a minimum of two members
  • Content knowledge relating to the topic of the review
  • Basic knowledge of systematic review methodology (how to formulate a review questions, set out eligibility criteria and assess risk of bias)
  • Basic statistical knowledge (how to extract data from a trial, conduct a meta-analysis and interpret and discuss the results)
  • The ability to write a scientific report of publishable standard in English
  • Project management and leadership ability from the contact person

What can authors expect from the Cochrane Oral Health Group?

  • An explicit explanation to potential review teams of the level and type of support that can be provided
  • Acknowledgement of  receipt of completed Cochrane Title Registration Forms and information on when the authors can expect to receive feedback on their proposal, within two weeks of receipt of the Title Registration Form;
  • Up-to-date details of the editorial process and timelines for new proposals submitted for editorial consideration, including information concerning prioritisation of topics;
  • Responses to correspondence from the Group’s review teams in a timely manner;
  • Putting potential review teams in touch with their reference Cochrane Centre if required.

More information can be found in the Cochrane Collaboration’s Policy Manual, Section 3.2.4.