Editorial and Publishing Policy Resource
Changes to citation and author details in published Cochrane Reviews

Citations of published Cochrane Reviews (including protocols) include the author names, review title, review publication year and issue, and author contact information. A citation reflects the details at the time of the publication. The following scenarios describe cases where a change may be requested by an author, and actions to take.

Changes to author name

If an author changes their name after the publication of a Cochrane Review (e.g. through marriage), the name on the published version of the Cochrane Review should not be changed until the next citation version (e.g. with a review update); a new citation version should not be created for this purpose.

If, however, a review was published with an error in the author’s name (at the time of publication), then a new citation version can be published to correct this error.

Changes to author contact details

Authors' contact details may change over time. Occasionally, authors may wish to update their contact details only (i.e. not add or remove authors) in the published Cochrane Review between citation versions, and this can proceed at the discretion of the Managing Editor. If there is a decision to update the contact details in the published Cochrane Review, the Cochrane Review must be republished as an amendment with no new citation. Note that the new contact details will appear only on the review version in the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews and not, for example, in PubMed.

Changes in authorship

Authors wishing to add or remove an author post-publication, and before the next citation version, must submit a request to the Managing Editor of the Cochrane Review Group. Managing Editors are recommended to use the COPE flowcharts for the following scenarios: 

One of the outcomes of the COPE flowcharts is to publish a correction. Instead of publishing a correction, the review should be republished as an amendment with a new citation.

Section info
Describe change
Some wording in the 'Changes to author contact details' revised to clarify the policy.
Change date
27 November 2013