Process for proposing changes to methods or tools used in Cochrane

Do you want to propose a change to the methods or tools used in Cochrane Reviews, such as to consider new methods or discontinue out-of-date methods? Cochrane encourages the submission of all methodological items from the community to discuss for future implementation, which could be field-specific or affect the community as a whole.

The Methods Executive is responsible for overseeing the assessment of new methods or tools for Cochrane Reviews. If a method or tool is deemed robust and viable, it is considered by the Editor in Chief, Editorial Board and Cochrane Central Teams, who make decisions on methods implementation in Cochrane. This also applies to implemented (current) methods that may have become obsolete and may need to be replaced or discontinued.

Please direct any enquiries to

Expectations of submissions

When submitting methods or tools for consideration, please provide the following information, if available: 

  1. An explicit statement on how, and in what context, you would like Cochrane to consider the method or tool.
  2. Proof of performance (published guidance or evaluation of the method or tool). 
  3. Information on the acceptability of the method or tool, within or outside of Cochrane. 

Examples of submissions include methodological improvements or tool development, new methods, or methods offering different approaches, such as new tools for assessing risk of bias in different study designs, new tools for facilitating the review process, or new analytical methods for updating meta-analysis.

Please complete and submit a method or tool of interest form. Supporting documents (up to 2MB) can be uploaded with this form.

Please direct any enquiries to, including any enquiries about prospective submissions.

What to expect once you have submitted

Once you have submitted it, you will receive a confirmation email from a member of Cochrane Central. Submissions will be assessed by the Methods Executive via email or in their next meeting  (meetings are held approximately every two months). Relevant Methods Group(s), Cochrane Group(s), and Cochrane Central teams will assess your submission. A recommendation will be made to the Editor in Chief by the Methods Executive. Further consultation may be required if the method or tool is controversial or without community consensus. 

Please note, this Editor in Chief decision will be on the scientific merit of your submission (not implementation). Further discussion will be needed with the Cochrane Central team regarding implementation. It is useful if your method and tool can be used without changes to Cochrane processes or technology. Methods with a wide-ranging impact on the conduct of Cochrane Reviews, e.g. built into the structure of the review or methods that may become mandatory, or widespread use or mass resources from Cochrane needed, e.g. training would be required, will need to be considered within the current implementation and development priorities across Cochrane.

If note, details of your submission will be made publicly available via the Cochrane Methods website. 

The Scientific Committee previously handled methods and tools proposals. Meeting agendas, minutes and supporting documents,  including full deliberations on topics, were archived and can be found here.