Search strategy formulation for systematic reviews: Issues, challenges and opportunities

MacFarlane, Andrew; Russell-Rose, Tony and Shokraneh, Farhad. 2022. Search strategy formulation for systematic reviews: Issues, challenges and opportunities. Intelligent Systems with Applications, 15, 200091. ISSN 2667-3053 [Article]

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Abstract or Description

Systematic literature reviews play a vital role in identifying the best available evidence for health and social care research, policy, and practice. The resources required to produce systematic reviews can be significant, and a key to the success of any review is the search strategy used to identify relevant literature. However, the methods used to construct search strategies can be complex, time consuming, resource intensive and error prone. In this review, we examine the state of the art in resolving complex structured information needs, focusing primarily on the healthcare context. We analyse the literature to identify key challenges and issues and explore appropriate solutions and workarounds. From this analysis we propose a way forward to facilitate trust and to aid explainability and transparency, reproducibility and replicability through a set of key design principles for tools to support the development of search strategies in systematic literature reviews.

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1 June 2022Accepted
6 July 2022Published Online
September 2022Published

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Date Deposited:

25 Jul 2022 08:22

Last Modified:

25 Jul 2022 08:22

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Yes, this version has been peer-reviewed.


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