Special Sessions and AGM

These 90-minute themed sessions include a mix of presentations and panel discussions that aim to highlight contemporary issues of interest to Cochrane and to Colloquium participants. The special sessions in Seoul aim to further Cochrane's broader goals and foster interaction and partnerships with external organisations and initiatives.

You can sign up to these sessions via the Sign Up page.

Confirmed sessions

Cochrane Global Ageing

Monday 24 October, 11am-12.30pm

This fast-paced, interactive, inclusive participatory special session will engage with multiple audiences and enable them to shape the agenda, explore thoughts and opinions, share best practice, network and collaborate. The session will be informed by an introduction from WHO’s Ageing and Life Course Programme, focusing on the Global Strategy and Action Plan on Ageing and Health and the synthesized evidence needed to implement the Strategy. Following this introduction, Cochrane Global Ageing will update on its recent work and how it intends responding to this Global Strategy.

Before the session we will publish and widely disseminate a series of open access social media pieces, e.g. short blogs, opinion pieces and showcase examples. We will actively solicit comments, discussions and contributions about these pieces on our social media platforms. These social media pieces will be co-produced by members of the Cochrane Global Ageing International Advisory Board.

Submitted contributions and other thoughts and opinions will be analysed before the Special session and themes generated. To ignite discussion themed showcase examples will be presented to delegates through several three-minute PechaKucha-style flash talks.

Participants will then join a table for 15 minutes for a themed discussion and then rotate to a second and third table to discuss different themes. Rapporteurs will summarise the discussion for each theme. The content and discussion of the entire workshop will be reported in real time via social media - text and images.

The outcome of the Special session will be the development of position papers or editorials for submission to open access publications. Participants will be able to contribute to these outputs post session via a Wiki.

Organisers: Tracey Howe, Sue Marcus and Vivian Welch

Project Transform: bringing people, process and technology together for evidence production

Monday 24 October, 4pm-5.30pm

This special session will outline the current and future directions of Project Transform tools and systems, as well as the impact on your experience as a Cochrane contributor. Project Transform is working with the wider Cochrane community to improve the way people, processes, and technologies come together to produce Cochrane content.

Project Transform is addressing four key challenges in content production through four project components:

  1. Evidence Pipeline - finding relevant research in a timely and reliable way
  2. Cochrane Crowd - developing pathways for potential new contributors
  3. TaskExchange - increasing the efficiency of working collaboratively
  4. Production Models - ensuring our content is relevant and up to date


  • Welcome 
  • Introduction to Project Transform & outline of Special Session
  • Getting your team set up: Crowd & TaskExchange
    • Q&A
  • Identifying studies: Crowd & machine
    • Q&A
  • Review production in maternal & child health
  • Project Transform in the bigger picture
  • Panel Discussion

Expected outcomes

This special session will provide an important opportunity for the Cochrane community to become familiar with progress to date and the impact the project is having on the work and experience of Cochrane contributors.

Target audience: Cochrane community (general audience)

Facilitators: Julian Elliott, James Thomas, Sally Green, Steve McDonald, Chris Mavergames, Anna Noel-Storr, David Tovey, Tari Turner

ContactJulian Elliott and James Thomas

Cochrane and REWARD: Is there more we can do to reduce research waste?

Tuesday 25 October, 11am-12.30pm

Last year Cochrane supported the REWARD (Reducing Research Waste and Reward Diligince) statement. The statement says:

“We recognise that, while we strive for excellence in research, there is much that needs to be done to reduce waste and increase the value of our contributions. We maximise our research potential when:

  • we set the right research priorities;
  • we use robust research design, conduct and analysis;
  • regulation and management are proportionate to risks;
  • all information on research methods and findings are accessible;
  • reports of research are complete and usable.

We believe we have a responsibility not just to seek to advance knowledge, but also to advance the practice of research itself. This will contribute to improvement in the health and lives of all peoples, everywhere. As funders, regulators, commercial organisations, publishers, editors, researchers, research users and others – we commit to playing our part in increasing value and reducing waste in research.”

This special session will discuss concrete actions for Cochrane to reduce research waste and cover the following topics:

  • Introduction to REWARD, Paul Glasziou
  • Tackling non-publication and poor reporting – the role of clinical trial registries, Kylie Hunter
  • Example from funding agencies and their focus on using SRs to inform future research, Mona Nasser
  • Feedback on REWARD survey among Cochrane community, Mona Nasser 
  • Example of Cochrane group working to reduce research waste, Martin Burton
  • Overview of ongoing Cochrane activities aimed at reducing research waste: Priority setting – Ruth Foxlee
  • Overview of ongoing Cochrane activities aimed at reducing research waste: Empty reviews – Karla Soares-Weiser
  • Discussion – What is Cochrane’s role in achieving the goal of reducing research waste
  • Wrap up and next steps
  • Expected outcomes

This special session aims to engage with the audience in discussing concrete actions Cochrane should undertake to reduce research waste. The aim is to get feedback on already ongoing work and activities, as well as create a place for new ideas that could further support Cochrane in its aims to contribute to reducing research waste globally.

Target audience: Cochrane community (general audience)

Contact: Mona Nasser, Julie Wood and Sylvia de Haan

Debate on evidence for cancer screening

Tuesday 25 October, 11am-1pm


Kang Hyun Lee (Director, Korea National Cancer Center)

11:00 ~ 11:40  Evidence on effectiveness on mammography screening  

  • Uncertainty about effectiveness of mammography screening: Alex Barratt (Sydney University)
  • Mammography screening is not effective in reducing breast cancer mortality: Peter Gotzsche (Cochrane Nordic)

11:40 ~ 12:10  National breast cancer screening program in Korea & Japan

  • Japanese guidelines for breast cancer screening ; Current issues and future Perspective: Chisato Harashima (Japan National Cancer Center)
  • National Breast Cancer Screening Program in Korea: Yeol Kim (Korea National Cancer Center)

12:10 ~ 12:40  Can national breast cancer screening program be justified?

Dabate on national mammography screening program

  • Jong Myon Bae (Jeju University)
  • Eun Sook Lee (Korea National Cancer Center)

12:40 ~ 13:00  Panel Discussion

Supported by : Korea National Cancer Center

Responding to Cochrane's challenges through the Strategy to 2020; and the Annual General Meeting

Tuesday 25 October, 4pm-6.30pm

Cochrane is in a period of significant organizational change. It is almost three years since we launched the Strategy to 2020 with the aim of putting our evidence at the heart of health decision-making all over the world. In that time we have made major investments in improving the technology used to produce Cochrane Reviews, radically increased the support provided to translation teams globally, and started work on a realignment of our organizational structure and governance. These changes, and many more in addition, affect all Cochrane Groups, their staff and contributors.

This year there’s a new approach to informing the community about the latest news related to these strategic plans. Preceding the Annual General Meeting there will be a series of presentations highlighting the key developments, led by the CEO, Editor in Chief, and members of the Cochrane community. The whole session is expected to go from 16:00-18:30 local time. Everyone attending the Colloquium is invited to attend.

Contact: Lucie Binder