READ-It Inception Phase Report

29 Apr 2019

DFID have supported evidence synthesis to help inform DFID development policies in health and poverty since 1992 through a programme of work with Liverpool and partners working mainly through Cochrane.

This investment has helped demonstrate how evidence synthesis provides reliable, unconflicted, scientifically defensible evidence in key technical policy areas, and can have a real impact on content of care, more efficient health care, and poverty reduction.

READ-It represents the next phase of developing the Evidence Ecosystem portfolio in health-related to diseases of poverty through Cochrane and related organizations relevant to DFID, global and national health systems. In the light of changes in the ecosystem, this new programme:

1. Is committed to producing only systematic reviews with anticipated high impact. 1These will be generally related to public health and primary care in LMICs;
2. Is committed to developing LMIC-led methods projects;
3. Includes research synthesis in non-health sectors impacting on health to forward the Sustainable Development Goals agenda, where transdisciplinary working is likely to be important;
4. Promotes research leadership and development of independent evidence synthesis hubs in LMICs.

We have broadened our partnership portfolio beyond Cochrane entities, bringing in partners more closely associated with a policy, and with partners with experience in evidence synthesis in other disciplines.

During this Inception phase, we have:

• Conducted consultations, literature scanning and consensus building to identify review topics that are important questions to our stakeholders and potentially high impact;
• Built consensus with partners on new protocols for years one and two;
• Developed outlines for methods projects to advance the science of synthesis;
• Conducted a planning and consultation meeting with all potential partners and DFID. In this meeting, we gained a common understanding of the planned science, policy engagement and performance expectations.
• Set up work plans and contracts with all new partners;
• Liaised with the World Health Organization and PAHO, taking on several topics in our response mode;
• Drafted a code of conduct and safeguarding procedures.