02.01.18 “BMC Systematic Reviews” have made a call for papers

“BMC Systematic Reviews” have made a call for papers: Automation in systematic reviews. Series Editor is Professor Joseph Lau.

“Systematic Reviews” invites you to submit to our new thematic series, ‘Automation in systematic reviews’. In this series, the Editors invite authors to submit articles about innovative uses of computer technologies in producing systematic reviews. For further information see BMC’s website.


02.12.17 Announcing the launch of Cochrane Interactive Learning

Cochrane is delighted to announce the full launch of all nine modules of its new online introductory training course on how to conduct systematic reviews of interventions. Cochrane authors and other producers of systematic reviews from across the world will be able to access self-directed learning developed by world-leading experts in systematic review methods.

For more information, please see the full announcement of the launch of Cochrane Interactive Learning here.

29.11.17 “Evidence-Based Research” is now an entry on Wikipedia

Thanks to Jong-Wook Ban “Evidence-Based Research” is now an entry on Wikipedia.org.

Link to the Wikipedia page here.

16.10.18 Avoiding redundant health research

Kavli Trust, a Norwegian foundation, has used systematic reviews to help them decide which research projects to fund.

“The trust would accordingly urge all institutions and funders to give greater emphasis to securing systematic overviews and user priorities when determining what health research to pursue.”

Read the article here.

Involving people – a learning resource for systematic review authors

An argument within evidence-based research is that it is not enough that clinical research is valid – it also has to be of value for society and the scientific community. To create value we need the perspective from all involved stakeholders – particularly consumers of clinical research.

Cochrane has prepared an online learning resource for systematic review authors to help them get patients, their families and carers, as well as other members of the public and health care teams involved in the production of reviews.

This is a great initiative and we urge everyone to use and share this tool to help us to involve people in clinical research.

Reflections from the Global Evidence Summit, Cape Town, South Africa, September 13 – 16, 2017

Together with the REWARD Alliance the Evidence-Based Research Network presented the need to increase value and reduce waste in clinical research. The session focused particularly on the importance of using prior research in a systematic and transparent way to inform new studies so that they are answering questions that matter in a valid, efficient and accessible manner. The structure of the session was a very short introduction to the theme, and then group discussions based on a few questions and finally a plenary discussion.

More than 70 people participated in the session, and a lively discussion identified a number of important issues to consider when aiming to be evidence-based in clinical research.

In the discussion, participants mentioned that:

  1. Systematic reviews are often of poor quality because junior researchers are asked to prepare them – often without any supervision or guidance.
  2. There is a need for room in journals for systematic reviews
  3. Not all funding agencies know how important systematic reviews are
  4. It is difficult to receive funding for conducting a systematic review – because it is often NOT acknowledged as research in its own right
  5. The regulator is not allocating money and time for preparing systematic reviews
  6. There is a need for experts in systematic reviews to help researchers to prepare them
  7. Patients and practitioners perspectives should be combined with systematic reviews in order to ensure that research is important and relevant
  8. The responsibility for being evidence-based in research is shared between the research community, the funding available and other stakeholders – thus not the researcher alone. That is also a reason why patients should participate in research.
  9. Often there is not enough time to prepare a systematic review between the announcement of funding opportunities and the deadline for submitting applications
  10. The funding agencies need systematic reviews for their research agenda

Thanks to all the participants for lively and visionary discussions in both groups and plenum. REWARD Alliance and the EBRNetwork have collected a lot of inspiration and new important perspectives to improve quality of clinical research.

Hans Lundhans lund_d
Chairman of the EBRNetwork

Funders and regulators are more important than journals in fixing the waste in research

It is important that the incentives to reduce waste in research is present as early as possible in the research process. Thus funders and regulators – like ethics committees – is having a unique position to support the researchers in preparing only valuable and valid research projects.

Read the article from Paul Glasziou and Iain Chalmers in The BMJ Opinion here.

Welcome to our new Steering Group members!

We are pleased to welcome two new members to our Steering Group – Caroline Blaine and Jennifer Yost.

CBCaroline is Deputy Head of Content at the BMJ Knowledge Centre. Her interest in the EBRNetwork is from the perspective of a publisher and also for the purpose of knowledge transfer. A systematic review before any new study prevents research waste and puts any new study into context. In this way it’s relevance to the body of evidence is immediately apparent and it can be quickly implemented in evidence-based point of care tools such as BMJ Best Practice. Caroline is delighted to join the Steering Group of the EBRNetwork to help progress evidence-based research methodology and the inclusiveness of this approach to researchers, publishers, clinicians and patients.

Jennifer YostJennifer is an Assistant Professor at McMaster University in Canada who is committed to teaching and conducting research related to decision making informed by the best available research evidence, She is excited to join the EBRNetwork Steering Group and looks forward to advancing this international collaboration for evidence-based research, particularly from the perspective of educators and researchers.  

We are glad to have them on the team. Welcome!