The systematic literature review (SLR) is an increasingly important research tool for extracting new knowledge from existing research data. The SLR process originated from the medical field but is now common across many disciplines, including social sciences and computer science.
In the medical field, the Cochrane Collaboration is a reference organisation that "produces and disseminates systematic reviews of healthcare interventions". Cochrane reviews follow the guidelines provide in the Cocharen handbook. According to the handbook, "a systematic review attempts to collate all empirical evidence that fits pre-specified eligibility criteria in order to answer a specific research question. It uses explicit, systematic methods that are selected with a view to minimizing bias, thus providing more reliable findings from which conclusions can be drawn and decisions made".
In general, the SLR process is very resource intensive. Moreover, it is essential that the SLR process can be easily validated and repeated if necessary, if research outputs from the SLR process have to carry an appropriate level of confidence.
If you prefer, you can also download the full source code and database creation script:Download PHP Download SQL
Prerequisites: We have installed this software on Apache web server with PHP support and MySQL database.
Installation instructions: just uncompress the files in a directory that is accessible from your webserver; create the database using the slrtool-createdb.sql script. Modify the config.php file and you should be able to work straight away. Please contact us if you need further details.
The Cochrane Handbook identifies the following 8 steps in a systematic literature review (see Part 2: General methods for Cochrane reviews):
The controls described in the following figure are described in general terms in the literature. The tool we plan to develop will provide concrete instantiations of each control in collaboration with key communities of interest.