Principles of collaboration on development of automation in systematic reviews released.
- Systematic reviews involve multiple tasks, each with different issues, but all must be improved.
- Automation may assist with all tasks, from scoping reviews to identifying research gaps as well protocol development to writing and dissemination of the review.
- The processes for each task can and should be continuously improved, to be more efficient and more accurate.
- Automation can and should facilitate the production of systematic reviews that adhere to high standards for the reporting, conduct and updating of rigorous reviews.
- Developments should also provide for flexibility in combining and using, e.g. subdividing or merging steps and allowances for different users to use different interfaces.
- Different groups with different expertise are working on different parts of the problem; to improve reviews as a whole will require collaboration between these groups.
- Every automation technique should be shared, preferably by making code, evaluation data and corpora available for free.
- All automation techniques and tools should be evaluated using a recommended and replicable method with results and data reported.
Drafted by members of International Collaboration for the Automation of System Reviews (ICASR) at their first meeting, 2 October 2015, Vienna, Austria.