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Systematic Review Methods for Topics in Philosophy and Religion: Intolerance in Religion

Rapid Review of Intolerance in Religion. Also see box below

This project is underway.  

In academia the traditional literature review (TLR) is used to provide a summary look at what has been 'done before'. However, critics poiint to the potential for biased representation of topics when TLR are used. A large systematic review methods (SR) literature offers evidence that the shortcomings of TLR might be minimized. Moreover, SR methods themselves are evolving; 'rapid reviews' are a new approach for ‘picturing the literature’ on topics.

This project is working on using a 'rapid review' to ‘map the social science literature’ on the topic of ‘intolerance in religion’.

Just below you see links to copies of a PowerPoint and Handout used on June 5, 2014 for a presentation at the 2014 Annual Conference on Information & Religion, Center for the Study of Information and Religion, Kent State University, Kent, Ohio.  These items represent current results for the project on intolerance and religion.  Corresponding paper published is indicated in box below.

Paper and working bibliography on the topic of "tolerance and religion in the social science literature"

October 20, 2014 update.

The summary below is taken from the article published in ASIR: Advances in the Study of Information and Religion 

The article is an extension of work presented at the conference noted above.

The link below is to a "current working bibliography" that others can use. It was created as a part of exploring the use of "rapid review/scoping" methods for the project noted above.  


Systematic review (SR) methods are urged as approaches that can enhance the rigor of literature reviews. For example, strategies have been developed to reduce the possibilities for unconscious or conscious “cherry picking" of publications to support a reviewer’s viewpoint, or the possibilities for their using an unrepresentative subset of literature in their reviews. Our goal in pursuing the current project has been to explore the use of SR methods for topics in religion, and to develop and present an initial framework and package that others might use. As librarians we examined current SR literature to learn of methods. We outlined those methods; and we noted relevant SR resources for further learning. We also presented results for the “rapid review” and “scoping” steps that we have used (to date) to address the following broad research question: how is the topic of “intolerance and religion” addressed in the social science literature? We provided access to a current working bibliography/database of current results that can be used by others. We also indicated what a number of next steps might be. The literature of SR methods does seem a valuable resource for guidance that can serve librarians and researchers as they work on reviews addressing topics in religion.

Working bibliography of research on the topic of "tolerance and religion in the social science literature" - NOTE: access to this bibliography was cut off when KSU did not renew a subscription to RefWorks in 2017.

A paper presentation for The Society for the Scientific Study of Religion - October 2016

"A scoping review of "intolerance and religion" in the psychology literature"
A paper presentation for The Society for the Scientific Study of Religion
Annual Meeting – Atlanta, Georgia – October 2016

A small web site is here with information and handout and PowerPoint from that presentation.

Description of paper: Traditional literature reviews (TLR) have long been and continue to be utilized for overviews and background understanding of research topics. Systematic reviews (SR) are methods that provide a more rigorous framework and product compared to TLR. Scoping and Rapid Review approaches have recently seen increased attention as alternatives to full SR. These two approaches vary from fuller SR projects, but they seek to incorporate methods that support rigor in process and outcome. This current project and presentation looks at methodology guidance from the literature on Scoping and Rapid Reviews. A case study goal is to create a map of how the topic of “tolerance and religion” is addressed in the published psychological literature.  My focus is on empirical studies published as peer reviewed journal articles. 

A great deal of discussion in papers uses term "tolerance" even though they are also talking about "intolerance"