Dear Colleagues,

This special issue of our regular newsletter has been prepared as we wish to inform you of EQUATOR events that will take place either before or during our scientific symposium which is being held in Freiburg, Germany from 11-12 October 2012.

We are especially delighted to announce that Professor John Ioannidis will present the fourth EQUATOR Annual Lecture at the end of our symposium on Friday 12 October 2012.

We hope that you will find these announcements of interest.

The EQUATOR Network Team

4th EQUATOR Annual Lecture to be presented by Professor John Ioannidis

'Reporting and reproducible research: salvaging the self-correction principle of science'

Friday 12 October 2012, 12 noon, Freiburg, Germany

The fourth EQUATOR Annual Lecture, which will end our symposium, will be presented by Professor John Ioannidis, Professor of Medicine, Health Research and Policy, and Statistics, Stanford University. Professor Ioannidis is a highly distinguished scientist and outstanding speaker well known around the world for his original thoughts and efforts devoted to the improvement of biomedical sciences. We are very pleased to welcome Professor Ioannidis in Freiburg.

Lecture abstract
The ability of self-correction is considered one of the main features of science.  In a cumulative meta-analysis framework, if sufficient time elapses, effects should tend to gravitate towards the “truth”. However, self-correction is often not happening.  Self-correction is often impeded by destruction of evidence, production of wrong evidence, and/or distortion of evidence.  Proper and accurate reporting of scientific data, results, and interpretations has a key role in ensuring that these impediments can be addressed in a satisfactory fashion.  There is evidence from empirical studies that suggest that in several scientific fields reporting deficiencies can have considerable impact on the credibility of the available scientific corpus. It is also increasingly recognized that reporting of methods and summary results, even if optimal, may often not be sufficient to guarantee reproducibility for scientific results. Full availability of raw data, protocols, and analysis codes may need to be the goal for reproducible research. I will discuss some evidence and preliminary data on reproducibility checks in different fields, and offer some suggestions about steps to move forward as well as caveats about potential harms in trying to maximize reproducibility practices.

Short biography
John P.A. Ioannidis currently holds the C.F. Rehnborg Chair in Disease Prevention at Stanford University and is Professor of Medicine, Professor of Health Research and Policy, and Director of the Stanford Prevention Research Center at Stanford University School of Medicine, Professor of Statistics (by courtesy) at Stanford University School of Humanities and Sciences, member of the Stanford Cancer Center and of the Stanford Cardiovascular Institute, and affiliated faculty of the Woods Institute for the Environment.  From 1999 until 2010 he chaired the Department of Hygiene and Epidemiology at the University of Ioannina School of Medicine in Greece, as a tenured professor since 2003.  He is one of the most-cited scientists of his generation, with Hirsch h=97, Hirsch m=5.6, Schreiber hm=60 as of 2012 per GoogleScholar. He has received several awards, including the European Award for Excellence in Clinical Science for 2007, and has been inducted in the Association of American Physicians in 2009 and in the European Academy of Cancer Sciences in 2010. The PLoS Medicine paper on “Why most Published Research Findings are False,” has been the most-accessed and downloaded article in the history of Public Library of Science.  The Atlantic selected Ioannidis as the Brave Thinker scientist for 2010 claiming that he “may be one of the most influential scientists alive”.

Read more on the EQUATOR Network website

Pre-conference workshop: Key guidelines for reporting health research studies

On Wednesday 10th October 2012 the EQUATOR Network will hold a pre-symposium workshop from 13:00 until 16:30 in the Historisches Kaufhaus in Freiburg, Germany.

Transparent and accurate reporting of research findings is a necessary component of good research practice. Acquiring a sound knowledge of the principles of high quality reporting of various types of health research is crucial for researchers and professionals involved in the publication of medical research.

This workshop will provide an overview of the major scientific and ethical issues relating to the quality of health research reporting. Key reporting guidelines as well as examples of good and bad research reports will be discussed. Information about how reporting guidelines can help researchers to design, write and peer review research will be presented. New knowledge acquired during the workshop should benefit professionals in various positions involved in the conduct and publication of health research.

Target audience: Health research scientists and all professionals involved in conducting, supporting or publishing health related research.

Learning objectives:
1. Understand the importance of transparency and accuracy in reporting health research and be familiar with common deficiencies in the reporting of randomised controlled trials (RCTs), systematic reviews and meta-analyses, and observational studies
2. Understand the key concepts of reporting guidelines and their efficient use
3. Learn about the main elements of selected reporting guidelines: CONSORT (reporting RCTs); PRISMA (reporting systematic reviews and meta-analyses) and STROBE (reporting epidemiological studies)
4. Understand and efficiently use the EQUATOR Network online resources
5. Discuss the practical implementation of reporting guidelines in health research organisations

Professor Doug Altman, Centre for Statistics in Medicine, University of Oxford, UK
Dr John Hoey, Queen's University, Kingston, Canada
Professor Ana Marusic, University of Split, Croatia
Dr David Moher, Ottawa Hospital Research Institute, Ottawa, Canada
Dr Kenneth F. Schulz, Family Health International, Durham, USA
Dr Iveta Simera, Centre for Statistics in Medicine, University of Oxford, UK

Registration: Please register for the workshop when registering for the conference - EQUATOR symposium online registration

Registration fee: 50 Euro

Contact: Mrs Brigitte Weber ( or Dr Iveta Simera (

Read more on the EQUATOR Network website

EQUATOR Network Scientific Symposium 11-12 October 2012

ACT now: Accuracy, Completeness, and Transparency in health research reporting

We would like to invite you to the scientific symposium and 4th EQUATOR Annual Lecture organised by the EQUATOR Network and the German Cochrane Centre.  The theme for the symposium is "ACT now: Accuracy, Completeness, and Transparency in health research reporting" and it will be held in Freiburg, Germany from 11-12 October 2012.

The symposium will be of great interest to health research scientists and clinicians, journal editors and peer reviewers, reporting guideline developers, publishers, research funders and other professionals involved in research education, research governance and the publication of medical research.

The focus of the meeting is to:
Highlight critical issues in health research reporting and its wider consequences

Present key findings from relevant scientific research; topics include:
Reporting quality of research studies in all areas of medicine
Common problems in research reporting (e.g. publication bias, selective reporting, inconsistencies between protocol and publication, misinterpretation of research findings)
Impact and consequences of poor reporting on systematic reviews and clinical guidelines, clinical practice and patients’ care
Development of robust reporting guidelines
Increasing awareness and knowledge of principles of rigorous research reporting and available guidelines
Implementation of reporting guidelines in journals, and by research and funding organisations
Development and delivery of educational and training programmes on research reporting

Discuss potential solutions for improvement of health research literature and share experiences

Speakers include: Douglas Altman; Gerd Antes; Virginia Barbour; Amanda Burls; Iain Chalmers; An-Wen Chan; Luis Gabriel Cuervo; Erik von Elm; Paul Glasziou; Steven Goodman; John Ioannidis; Ana Marusic; Joerg Meerpohl; David Moher; Marcus Muellner; Mark Pitman; Iveta Simera; Elizabeth Wager; Paula Williamson.

The EQUATOR Network 4th Annual Lecture will be delivered during the symposium by Professor John Ioannidis, Professor of Medicine, Health Research and Policy, and Statistics at Stanford University. Professor Ioannidis will discuss “Reporting and reproducible research: salvaging the self-correction principle of science” on Friday 12th October at 12 noon.

For more information about the symposium, registration and the 4th EQUATOR annual lecture please visit our website:

Please do come and share your experiences and participate in discussions on how to improve health research reporting!

Register soon to avoid disappointment - places are filling up quickly!

Read more on the EQUATOR Network website

Comments sought on PCORI draft methodology report - August 2012

The draft report outlines 60 standards for the conduct of patient-centered outcomes research (PCOR) and was produced by PCORI's 17-member Methodology Committee consisting of a panel of top research methodology experts appointed by the U.S. Government Accountability Office. It aims to establish universally accepted standards to ensure that health professionals adopt the best and most appropriate methods for conducting PCOR.

The draft report is available at:

Please visit to add your feedback to the online comment and survey tool. The deadline for submitting feeback on the draft report is 11:59 p.m. ET on Friday, September 14. PCORI are requesting that all comments be sent through the PCORI website in keeping with their requirements for transparency and state that they regret that they cannot accept comments through other channels.

Read more on the EQUATOR Network website
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