Resources for peer reviewers

The Cochrane peer review policy is available from the Cochrane Editorial and Publishing Policy Resource (EPPR). For general queries relating to the Cochrane policy on peer review, please contact the Editorial and Methods Department (ceu@cochrane.org). 

Peer reviewers should be aware of, and follow, the Committee on Publication Ethics’ Ethical guidelines for peer reviewers. In summary, peer reviewers should:

  • only agree to review manuscripts for which they have the subject expertise required to carry out a proper assessment and which they can assess in a timely manner; 
  • respect the confidentiality of peer review and not reveal any details of a manuscript or its review, during or after the peer-review process, beyond those that are released by the journal; 
  • not use information obtained during the peer-review process for their own or any other person’s or organisation’s advantage, or to disadvantage or discredit others; 
  • declare all potential conflicting interests, seeking advice from the journal if they are unsure whether something constitutes a relevant interest; 
  • not allow their reviews to be in influenced by the origins of a manuscript, by the nationality, religious or political beliefs, gender or other characteristics of the authors, or by commercial considerations; 
  • be objective and constructive in their reviews, refraining from being hostile or in inflammatory and from making libellous or derogatory personal comments; 
  • acknowledge that peer review is largely a reciprocal endeavour and undertake to carry out their fair share of reviewing and in a timely manner; 
  • provide personal and professional information that is accurate and a true representation of their expertise; 
  • recognise that impersonation of another individual during the review process is considered serious misconduct.   

Below are some other resources that you may find helpful when peer reviewing a protocol or review for Cochrane Incontinence.