Registration is open for the Cochrane Colloquium, which will take place in London from 4th to 6th September 2023, with satellite events on 3rd September. Cochrane is offering stipends and bursaries to help cover travel and accommodation costs for those who might otherwise be unable to attend, including participants from low- and middle-income countries (LMICs).
The Colloquium will provide an opportunity for individuals to network with other like-minded professionals, share knowledge and expertise, and engage in discussions around evidence-based healthcare. Cochrane believes that by offering these stipends and bursaries, it will be able to attract a diverse group of participants, who will bring with them a range of perspectives and experiences that will enrich the event.
We spoke to Sabrina Khamissa, Cochrane’s Event Support Officer, about Colloquium stipends and bursaries.
What inspired Cochrane to offer stipends and bursaries for individuals from low- and middle-income countries to attend the Colloquium?
“Cochrane is committed to promoting diversity and inclusion within its network and recognizes the importance of making its events accessible to individuals from all backgrounds. The organization understands that individuals from low and middle-income countries may face financial barriers that prevent them from attending the Colloquium and wants to help alleviate those barriers by offering stipends and bursaries. This is a long tradition at Cochrane and we have been offering this for many years.
We are also delighted to have TDR sponsor a limited number of bursaries. TDR is the Special Programme for Research and Training in Tropical Diseases, and is a global programme of scientific collaboration that helps facilitate, support and influence efforts to combat diseases of poverty. It is co-sponsored by the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the World Bank and the World Health Organization (WHO).”
How will Cochrane ensure that the stipends and bursaries are distributed fairly and equitably?
“Cochrane has set out clear criteria for eligibility for the stipends and bursaries, and the LMIC Stipend Committee will assess applications based on those criteria. The committee is made up of members who reside in low- or middle-income countries or who are familiar with the practical issues and challenges faced by applicants. They will be mindful of ensuring that the stipends and bursaries are distributed fairly and equitably and will prioritize applicants who demonstrate a clear interest in evidence-based healthcare and who are members of the Cochrane network.”
What kind of activities can attendees expect at the Colloquium?
“Attendees can expect to engage in a range of activities, including interactive sessions, presentations, and workshops. The Colloquium will provide an opportunity for individuals to network with other like-minded professionals, share knowledge and expertise, and engage in discussions around evidence-based healthcare. It’s an excellent opportunity to tap into the global network of Cochrane colleagues! I am personally excited for the social evening event we are planning and the ‘take a break’ floor – there are lots of small touches that are going to make this a unique event for everyone to enjoy!
Check out this video from May Loong Tan. She received a stipend to attend the 2018 Colloquium and shares her experience.”
How does Cochrane hope that attendees from low- and middle-income countries will contribute to the Colloquium?
“Cochrane’s global network is made up of 50+ countries. Cochrane believes that by promoting the attendance of individuals from low- and middle-income countries, it will bring a range of perspectives and experiences that will enrich the event and will help to foster a more diverse and inclusive community of individuals committed to evidence-based healthcare.”
If you are interested in attending the Cochrane Colloquium and would like to apply for a stipend or bursary, please visit the Colloquium website for more information and to submit your applications soon! We look forward to welcoming you to London in September 2023!