Instructions for authors on submitting Licence for Publication forms. See also Managing Licence for Publication forms and information on Licence for Publcation forms in the Editorial and Publishing Policy Resource.

The Licence for Publication form is a contract between an author and Cochrane that grants Cochrane an exclusive licence to publish the author's work.

When your work is submitted for publication, you will receive an email message with a link to your individual Licence for Publication form. You cannot complete a Licence for Publication form on someone else's behalf.

IMPORTANT: the review cannot be published until all authors have accepted the Licence for Publication and submitted their forms. 

Submit a Licence for Publication Form

  1. You will receive an email from your editorial team when you need to complete your Licence for Publication form  The message will contain a link to your individual form.
  2. Click on the link in your message. This will take you to the Cochrane Account login page. This step is skipped if you are already logged in.
  3. Log in to access Licence for Publication form.  
  4. Read the contents of the agreement.  
  5. Click the View the Final Version button to approve the final version of your review. 
  6. If your review is related to your work for a governmental organisation, the WHO or is has been funded by certain types of grant, you will need to prepare an additional form in advance so that you can upload it at the same time as you submit the Cochrane form.
  7. If relevant, choose the Special type of work in the Special types of work option and, if necessary, attach the required file.
  8. Accept the Licence for Publication and enter your name for confirmation in the Acceptance of Licence for Publication option.  
  9. Click 'Submit' at the bottom of the Licence for Publication Form. A pop-up box with the message 'Thank you for submitting the form.' should appear.
  10. Click OK to confirm submission.

You can also submit the Licence for Publication form in Archie. Right-click your review and choose Reports. Select Licence for Publication Forms and click Open in the Access column.

Please note:

You have one hour to complete the form, or you will be logged out and have to start the process again.

You should never leave your computer unattended with the form open.

You must complete this form in one editing session, as it is not possible to save a draft. If you need to close the form without submitting it, you can either close the browser window, or you can click the Cancel button at the end of the form.


  • If nothing happens when you click the link, try copying the link into the address line of your browser manually. 
  • If you do not remember your login details, use the 'Forgot your password?' link on the login page or contact
  • If the link is not working, i.e. you get a 'page not found' error or a 'Cannot find a Licence for publication form with the given ID' error before or after logging in, check that the link has not been broken, i.e. it extends over multiple lines.
    An intact link should look like this, except the code at the end will be different:
    If the link appears broken, try piecing it together by copying each part to the address line of your browser. Make sure all of the code is included.
  • If you see the message 'You are not authorised to perform this action' after logging in, you must ensure you have logged in with the correct Cochrane Account details. You should never use another person's login details. 
  • If you see other error messages or experience problems that cannot be solved by following these instructions,  please contact your editorial team or

Review a previously-submitted Licence for Publication Form

You can always return to a form you have submitted if you want to check a detail or, in exceptional circumstances, to retract it.

The easiest way to access the form is to click the link in the original email. If you no longer have the email, you can view your Licence for Publication form in Archie. Right-click on your review title and choose Reports > Licence for Publication forms, then click Open next to your name in the Access column.

Retract a Licence for Publication Form

  1. Open the submitted Licence for Publication form.
  2. Scroll down the form and click Retract.
  3. Click OK to confirm retraction.

Contents of the Licence for Publication form

The Licence for Publication form is divided into five sections: Review information, Licence for publication, Declaration of interest statement, Special types of work, and Acceptance of Licence for publication.

Review information

This section shows information about your review. The blue text of the review title, the review group's name and your own name can be clicked to open pop-up windows with more information. You can view the proof of the review by clicking either the button labelled 'View the final version' or the button labelled 'Preview published PDF'. If you need to discuss anything concerning the proof before you can accept the Licence, please close the form and contact your editorial team. 

Note: If the pop-up windows do not appear, check the 'pop-up blocker' settings of your browser.

Licence for publication

This section contains the terms of the Licence for Publication. Please read this carefully. Even though you may have completed a Licence for Publication form before, the terms may have changed.

Declaration of interest statement

This section contains a copy of the 'Declarations of interest' section of the review. Although not directly related to the Licence for Publication, it is included here to remind you what will be published about your potential conflicts of interest for this review. If there is a problem with the text, please contact your editorial team. See also Instructions for authors: Conflicts of Interest forms

Special types of work

If your review has been prepared as part of work for a governmental organisation or charity, or if you hold certain grants, please pay special attention to this section. After choosing the option that applies to you by clicking the radio button, the instructions relevant to your type of work will be displayed on the form. Please read these carefully.

In some circumstances an additional form is required that has to be completed, signed, scanned into a PDF document, and uploaded together with the Cochrane form. If you do not have the additional form file ready, you have to close the form now and return later when you are ready to proceed. You can return to the form at any time by following the steps outlined in these instructions again.

Acceptance of Licence for publication

This section is where you must positively affirm your acceptance of the Licence for publication. Because you are logged into Archie, your identity has already been confirmed. You now have to tick the box labelled 'I have read the terms and accept the Licence for publication', and, to make sure the form has not been submitted by mistake, you have to type your name exactly as written. When done, the Submit button at the end of the form will become enabled. If this does not happen, please double check the spelling of your name. If you have pasted in your name, try typing it instead.

Note: There is no option to submit a 'not accepted' Licence for Publication form. If you cannot accept the Licence, please close the form and contact your editorial team.

At the end of the form you can choose whether you want to be notified if, in exceptional circumstance, the Review Group introduces minor changes to the review just before publication. In the event of such changes, you would be sent a link that allows you to quickly identify the changes.

Note: If you are the contact person for the review you cannot opt-out of being notified.