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Better standards and guidelines can bolster research literature reviews

Press/Media: Newspaper Article

Description

There is an enormous amount of academic research in the world. And the number is growing all the time. The volume of research articles doubles every nine years. In 2010 there were already estimated to be more than 50 million research papers on pretty much every subject imaginable (and some we’d struggle to imagine).

There are some established, tested standards to help review authors be more transparent and reliable. Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic reviews and Meta-Analyses, or PRISMA, is commonly used in the field of health care.

Recently, I worked together with Biljana Macura (Stockholm Environment Institute), Paul Whaley (Lancaster Environment Centre), and Andrew Pullin (Bangor University) to develop a new set of standards. It’s called RepOrting standards for Systematic Evidence Syntheses, or ROSES and was produced specifically for those reviews that do not fit the well-defined field of health care.

Period18/06/2018

There is an enormous amount of academic research in the world. And the number is growing all the time. The volume of research articles doubles every nine years. In 2010 there were already estimated to be more than 50 million research papers on pretty much every subject imaginable (and some we’d struggle to imagine).

There are some established, tested standards to help review authors be more transparent and reliable. Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic reviews and Meta-Analyses, or PRISMA, is commonly used in the field of health care.

Recently, I worked together with Biljana Macura (Stockholm Environment Institute), Paul Whaley (Lancaster Environment Centre), and Andrew Pullin (Bangor University) to develop a new set of standards. It’s called RepOrting standards for Systematic Evidence Syntheses, or ROSES and was produced specifically for those reviews that do not fit the well-defined field of health care.

References

TitleBetter standards and guidelines can bolster research literature reviews
Degree of recognitionInternational
Media name/outletThe Conversation
Media typeWeb
Duration/Length/Size600 words
CountryUnited Kingdom
Date18/06/18
DescriptionA detailed recent analysis showed the review used unreliable and biased methods to claim that research linking sugar to coronary heart disease was invalid. The original finding benefited the sugar industry, but it may have caused significant damage to human health because of ill-informed policy.

This is why researchers should try to make their literature reviews as reliable as possible. They can do this by following guidelines and standards when they plan and conduct their reviews. Another approach is to adhere to established standards in how to report what they did and found in detail.

That’s what prompted myself and several colleagues to design a new set of rigorous standards specifically for reviews that do not fit the well defined field of health care.
Producer/AuthorNeal Haddaway
PersonsCrispin Halsall, Paul Whaley