Earlier this year, two weeks after the beta launch of OpenTrials, two members of our team, Ben Meghreblian (Community Manager) and Jessica Fleminger (Researcher) travelled to the Cochrane Colloquium in Seoul to talk about OpenTrials. As you may know, we are keen to speak to different users of OpenTrials to better understand how it works well, how it doesn’t, and how we can improve it. This was a great opportunity to speak to a mixture of researchers, systematic reviewers, and information specialists and get their feedback, along with spreading the word amongst the Cochrane community.
Our talk covered some of the problems with the information architecture of evidence-based medicine, how OpenTrials aims to help fix them, a technical overview of the platform, how we import data, licensing issues, user examples, and a demo – here are the slides:
Along with some good questions and suggestions for OpenTrials, we also had a number of meetings, both planned and spontaneous, to discuss potential collaborations to improve OpenTrials functionality and integrate others’ data into our system.
A great example of this is the Risk of Bias data which the Cochrane Schizophrenia Group previously kindly gave to us (thanks a lot!). This is structured data produced by researchers, who have graded schizophrenia trials on issues such as blinding and selective reporting. Here are some examples of how we’ve integrated this data onto individual trial pages (hint: have a look at the ‘Methodological rigour’ section at the bottom of each page).
As always, if you have feedback about OpenTrials you can email us your thoughts, or file a GitHub issue if you’re familiar with it. We’ll keep you updated with any developments on the blog, but please make sure you subscribe to our newsletter and follow us on Twitter!