From 1 to 5 April, an annual Cochrane Governance meeting was held in Krakow, where all directors of all Cochrane Groups met, and during the five days they negotiated co-operation and planned the future development of Cochrane.
Mark Wilson, CEO of Cochrane, reported on Cochrane's work in 2018. Some of the major achievements were the establishment of eight new editorial networks, determining priorities for future systematic reviews, setting a new version of The Cochrane Library and developing Knowledge Translation Strategy. Establishing a system of tools for easier creation of systematic reviews is coming to an end, as well as new version of Cochrane Handbook. For easier communication, Slack Platform has been launched for everyone within Cochrane, and Cochrane forum has been renewed. This year, for the first time, the training was offered at a business meeting, in form of half-day workshops, and simultaneously there were co-operative workshops with policy makers on training, and on new tool for rating bias - RoB 2 (Risk of Bias 2).
Furthermore, Mark informed the attendees that the 'Crowd' Initiative, for sorting RCTs, now has 12,400 applicants from 189 countries and have now sorted 2.9 million articles. Cochrane membership grows fast with 250 new members per month and 2,500 supporters. Currently there are over 72,000 members and Cochrane supporters (44% increase). Many members collaborate with one of the 70 geographic groups (a new collective name for centers, auxiliary centers and affiliates). In 2019, a new Cochrane network is being set up in the US and China, as well as at least 25 new geographic groups. 26,000 summaries were translated in 15 languages, and in 2018 4,276 summaries and 180 podcasts. In the end, Cochrane's chief executive confirmed that Cochrane's revenue grew year after year, thanks to which Cochrane was constantly investing in new projects. He announced new tools for Knowledge translation and new educational materials for patients. Access to Cochrane.org pages grows year after year with a total of 37.15 million visits during 2018, of which 20 million from browsers from non-English speaking areas.
A working version of the document on inclusion and retention of experienced authors of systematic reviews was presented in Krakow to highlight the desire of Cochrane to provide the best possible experience for future authors and to attract the most capable people. Rule books have been announced for authors and editorial boards as well as new tools for making systematic reviews. There was also a talk about the mentoring of inexperienced authors, and colleagues from the Iberoamerica Group announced the piloting of the same. A working version of a Cochrane-Friendly Behavioral Document was also presented (Code of Conduct/Principles of Collaboration) and discussed in small groups. Demission of David Tovey, Chief-in-editor of Cochrane Library, has been announced, as well as publishing a tender for a new editor.
For the first time, a meeting was held between Cochrane's geographic groups and members of the Cochrane Consumer Executive, at the initiative of co-director of Cochrane Croatia, Irena Zakarija-Grković. They discussed the obstacles and ways of co-operation between Cochrane Centers and Patients' Associations and how to actively involve patients and other users in Cochrane. New educational facilities for patients were featured and Cochrane has announced funding to finance projects with patients. Co-director of Cochrane Croatia, Irena Zakarija-Grković, also participated in a meeting for translators and contributed to the development of a translation strategy for 2019-2020.
The next Cochrane business meeting will be held next year in Manchester.