There are several steps to preparing a Cochrane Review, some for the authors and some for the editorial team.
Authors submit the protocol/review to Editorial Manager, which is the editorial management system used by Cochrane. Between receipt and publication (if approved), authors can expect the following steps, each of which can take several weeks depending on the complexity of the review (eg number of trials, complexity of study designs), availability of peer referees and the Editor, level of technical edit required, and availability of authors to respond to peer review and editorial comments.
- An Editor will read the protocol/review and may request amendments before peer review.
- Each protocol/review will be refereed by at least five people, including a clinical/content specialists, methodologist/statistician, information specialist, and consumer peer reviewer in an open peer referee process (ie names of authors and peer referees not concealed).
- Authors make revisions in response to the Editor’s and peer referee’s feedback.
- The protocol/review has a technical edit (authors may need to respond to queries that arise).
- Preparation of proofs and approval for publication by the Co-ordinating Editor.
- Authors sign the license for publication form.
Cochrane Reviews changed from a monthly publication to a continuous publishing model where reviews and protocols are published as they are made ready, and the Managing Editor will inform authors of the intended CDSR publication issue upon submission of a protocol/review to the editorial base. This can be brought forward or delayed depending on an individual protocol's or review's circumstances.