Structured Literature Reviews

Building Transparency and Trust in Standards of Reporting Evidence

This paper provides an overview of the use of structured literature reviews towards promoting greater reliability in the use and reporting of evidence in evaluations.

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This resource discusses the use of structured literature reviews (SLR) in evaluations towards promoting transparency and trust in the reporting and use of evidence. Structured literature reviews aim to provide a summary of the most impactful, innovative, and recent research on a specified topic using systematic procedures for identifying and synthesizing studies.

With the above goal in mind, the paper provides an overview of various concepts and methods that researchers can use to systematically summarize evidence from a large collection of literature. This is supported by a case study of the application of SLR in the evaluation report by the Independent Evaluation Group (IEG) of the World Bank’s Doing Business project. The paper highlights the evaluation’s key lessons for reporting evidence and reflects on the pros and cons of using SLRs.