New Methods Executive

We would like to congratulate Carl Moons Prognosis Methods Group and Su Golder Adverse Effects Methods who are the newly elected members on the Methods Executive. Our thanks also go to Valerie King. 

The new Methods Executive will take on more strategic responsibility supporting the Scientific Committee with its agenda, the Editorial Board on issues with methods implementation, and seeks to improve communication between different Cochrane structures with related methods interests, and the Methods Groups. The new Methods Executive will:

  • Provide Cochrane with expertise advising on the state of the evidence for evidence synthesis methods;
  • Engage with the strategic infra-structure supporting the Editor in Chief on content developments and future strategy;
  • Ensure Cochrane has relevant intelligence on new and improved methods;
  • Provide oversight aiding decisions on methods for use in Cochrane Reviews, methods for expert review and evaluation, and methods we should not use;
  • Identify methods that fit with the priorities of decision-makers, guideline developers and other stakeholders to aid decision-making;
  • Advise and support any experimental approaches in collaboration with the Editor in Chief and the Editorial Board;
  • Maintain methods infra-structure by overseeing the Methods Groups and their Lead Convenors.

Executive constituency

In its new format the Methods Executive will see methodologists from the following roles represented: Senior Methods Adviser to the Editorial Board; Handbook Editor; Scientific Committee member and a member from the Cochrane Council.  The new Methods Executive also holds six positions for elected Methods Group convenors. Four of the current Convenors will remain to provide continuity and will step down over the next two years to allow the election of new members. Both the Methods Co-ordinator and Head of Membership, Learning and Support services will serve Ex Officio roles.

Experience required

The call for nominations sought applications from experienced, well-established Methods Group Convenors with strong connections within the Cochrane community. Along with their specialist expertise they will be skilled in systematic review methodology. Current Methods expertise on the Methods Executive covers diagnostic test accuracy, GRADE, information retrieval, qualitative evidence synthesis and statistics, so we particularly encouraged members from other Methods Groups to step forward.

Successful candidates

Susan Golder

Convenor of Adverse Effects Methods Group
University of York, UK.

I helped establish the Adverse Effects Methods Group in 2007 and have been an active co-convenor since. I have responsibility for our website, discussion list and Twitter page. I run regular workshops on methodological aspects at Cochrane Colloquia, UK contributors meetings, Annual Continental European Cochrane Entities Meeting (CECEM), run Cochrane Learning Live webinars and also teach on MSc modules and external webinars. I am also co-author on the chapter in the Cochrane Handbook on adverse effects and have peer reviewed the literature searching chapter for the handbook. I have peer reviewed Cochrane Review protocols, abstracts for Colloquia, and given help and advice to authors incorporating adverse effects into their reviews. With over 20 years’ experience of conducting systematic reviews I am currently undertaking a Cochrane Review on the immediate-release methylphenidate for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in adults.

I am involved with numerous methodological projects concerning systematic reviews – including “Interim guidance on the inclusion of clinical study reports and other regulatory documents in Cochrane Reviews”, and development of guidance for the identification and quality assessment of adverse effects in systematic reviews. My PhD was on evaluating and optimising the retrieval of research evidence for systematic reviews of adverse effects and has contributed to the methodological guidance for systematic reviews. I am currently on a post-doctoral fellowship from the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) and continue to work on issues using unpublished data, text mining and social media to maximise the efficiency and effectiveness of the retrieval of adverse effects data.

KGM (Carl) Moons

Convenor of Prognosis Methods Group and actively involved in the IPD MA Methods Group
Julius Center for Health Sciences and Primary Care, and Cochrane Netherlands. UMC Utrecht, Utrecht University, The Netherlands

After several years of convenorship of the Prognosis Methods Group (PMG), membership of the Methods Board, and active participation in other Cochrane Methods Groups, it is a natural progression for me to become actively involved in the new Methods Executive. My content knowledge and expertise in both prognosis reviews and the inclusion of individual participant data provide a me with a unique perspective.

In the current global era of risk based, precision, or personalized medicine combined with an emphasis on big and diverse data research, we see a clear shift to focus on prognosis studies. Primary prognosis studies (notably on prognostic factors and prognostic models) are proliferating in the medical literature. Big data research today is notably focusing on prognostication. The only way to keep track of all the primary prognosis research is to hasten the production of systematic reviews (SRs) of prognosis studies; to synthesize all this data into evidence that matters for our stakeholders. Over the past 10 years I have actively collaborated with colleagues across the globe, both within Cochrane and externally. The focus on SRs of prognosis studies is now actively supported within Cochrane as evidenced by the funding provided through MIFs 1 & 2 and the Strategic Methods Fund; the explicit focus on SRs of prognosis studies in the Cochrane Content Strategy to take forward the implementation of SRs of prognosis studies in Cochrane.

I have extensive experience with membership of similar boards and committees. I believe my expertise will complement the diverse range of expertise currently represented on the Methods Executive.  I will be fully engaged and will actively participate in the requested meetings (both face-to-face and online).  I am looking forward to engaging with the wider methods community through the Methods Executive and learning from my fellow colleagues