What is PredicTER?

PredicTER is a decision-support tool for estimating the time requirements of a systematic review or systematic map. The tool was produced as part of a wider project aimed at examining methods used in recent systematic reviews and maps.

How was PredicTER produced?

PredicTER evolved as a means of analysing patterns across recent reviews and is built on an underlying algorithm that combines volumes of evidence and working speeds from ‘average’ CEE reviews and experienced reviewers.

PredicTER is the result of a 4 year project to understand the type and volume of evidence found by researchers conducting CEE reviews. The analysis behind PredicTER involved an assessment of all CEE reviews and maps published between May 2012 and March 2017: 66 systematic reviews and 20 systematic maps. This analysis highlighted the ‘average’ volume of evidence dealt with at each stage of the review process for reviews and maps. These data were supplemented by a survey of 30 researchers with experience of conducting systematic reviews and maps to ascertain time requirements of individual stages. 

You can find the data behind PredicTER here: https://tinyurl.com/y7u7y985. The methods for producing PredicTER and the analysis of the data behind PredicTER’s default values is described in an article published in Conservation Biology here: https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/cobi.13231.

Who produced PredicTER?

The PredicTER tool was designed by Neal Haddaway (Stockholm Environment Institute) and Martin Westgate (Australian National University).

Neal is an experienced systematic reviewer, and has conducted a large number of reviews and maps on environmental and development topics. He also helps to develop review methodology, focusing on maximising transparency and efficiency in review processes. Martin is an ecologist and conservation biologist, studying how scientific information can be used to mitigate human impacts on the environment through evidence synthesis and empirical ecology.

Neal and Martin wanted to produce an evidence-based tool to predict the time needed for a systematic review to help with a grant application, and realised that the tool would be incredibly useful to other potential reviewers wanting to understand just how much effort is needed to conduct a review. 

Read more about the research behind PredicTER

The research article outlining the production of PredicTER and its data is currently under review. Contact us if you would like to know more.