An evidence map is a visual representation of the body of evidence in a specific area. A typical map takes the form of a grid, with research papers, data and other sources of information arranged according to different parameters along the x-axis and y-axis.
Evidence maps are commonly based on a systematic review of academic research and grey literature (government reports, unpublished papers, etc). They are often used by policymakers and others seeking a clear view of the current state of knowledge in a specific area. They can also be used to depict complex systems - for example different policies and their area of application.
A key feature of evidence maps is their interactivity: they enable users to interrogate and navigate through the research. Hyperlinks embedded within the maps connect directly with research papers and other sources. Filters allow users to select for specific categories of information, such as published papers covering specific geographies or policies affecting particular groups.