To respond to the needs of decision-makers through knowledge synthesis, advance the science of knowledge synthesis methodology in order to bridge the gap between research and practice, and promote evidence-informed decision making.
Basing decisions on expert opinion or the results from one study can be misleading, and spurious or biased results could result in the recommendation of ineffective or even harmful interventions. Knowledge synthesis is the cornerstone of evidence-informed practice. The science of knowledge synthesis methods, such as systematic reviews, focuses on the totality of evidence and is the base unit of knowledge translation products, such as policy briefs, clinical practice guidelines, and patient decision aids.
Our research program follows an integrated knowledge translation approach, which involves collaboration with decision-makers throughout the research process. This ensures that our work is relevant, timely, and directly responds to the needs of our knowledge users.
In order to respond to decision-makers, we also conduct methodological projects to advance the science of knowledge synthesis. Some of our methodology projects include identifying the appropriate knowledge synthesis method for different types of review questions, advancing rapid review methodology, and evaluating the quality and reporting of scoping reviews. We also have several network meta-analysis methodology projects related to modeling individual patient data, treatment dosages, and complex interventions.
Our multi-disciplinary team is made up of highly skilled individuals with diverse backgrounds and expertise in many areas, including: epidemiology, public health, biostatistics, qualitative research, health economics, and decision modeling. Under the directorship of Dr. Sharon E. Straus, the knowledge synthesis group is led by Dr. Andrea C. Tricco and is comprised of scientists, research associates, research coordinators, research assistants, graduate students, post-doctoral fellows, librarians, administrative staff, and over 25 part-time support staff.
Activities and Membership
Dr. Sharon Straus is an Associate Editor at Implementation Science, CMAJ, and the ACP Journal Club. She is also an advisory board member on numberous committees including: NIH Dissemination and Implementation Scientific Advisory Committee, TREKK (Translating Emergency Knowledge for Kids), CIHR SPOR (Strategy for Patient-Oriented Research) KT Working Group, and DECIDE (Developing and Evaluating Communication Strategies to Support Informed Decisions and Practice Based on Evidence).
Dr. Andrea Tricco is an Associate Editor at Journal of Clinical Epidemiology, BMC Medicine, Systematic Reviews and BMC Medical Research Methodology. She is a member of the Cochrane Bias Methods group, and the Individual Patients Data Meta-Analysis Methods Group (IPDMAMG) of The Cochrane Collaboration.View more team members