The Thomas C Chalmers Award is awarded to the principal author of the best oral and the best poster presentation addressing methodological issues related to systematic reviews.
Tom Chalmers (1917-1995) was an outspoken advocate of randomised trials, whether at the bedside, at professional meetings, in class or in situations pertaining to his own life. His creativity spanned his entire career, influencing clinicians and methodologists alike. He is perhaps best known for the notion ‘randomise the first patient’, his belief that it is more ethical to randomise patients than to treat them in the absence of good evidence. In his later years, in arguably his most important work, Tom and his colleagues showed that, had information from RCTs been systematically and cumulatively synthesised, important treatments such as thrombolytic therapy for myocardial infarction would have been recognised as useful much earlier.
For more information on the prize eligibilty and criteria, visit the Colloquium Prize page. The call for abstracts is open and the deadline for submission is 12 April 2019. Abstracts for oral presentations and posters are invited in areas relevant to the work of Cochrane as well as evidence-based practice, policy, methodology, and advocacy.
In 2018, the winner of best long oral presentation winner was Adriani Nikolakopoulou for 'The emerging evidence synthesis tools: actively living network meta-analysis'. We spoke to Adriani on what winning the Thomas C Chalmers Award 2018 has meant to her.
"I work as a post-doctoral researcher in the Evidence Synthesis Methods group at the Institute of Social and Preventive Medicine (ISPM) of the University of Bern.
Cochrane’s mission and the life of Thomas C Chalmers are a big inspiration to me and I consider an honour to be able to associate my work with them.
Developing methodology for systematic reviews is a key aspect of my work. Thus, an award for the best oral presentation addressing methodological issues related to systematic reviews seemed like a good fit. Moreover, as an early career researcher, I consider any means to help dissemination of your research to be very important. The process involved in applying for the award was as easy as indicating that you consider yourself eligible for the Thomas C Chalmers Award when submitting an abstract for the Colloquium.
In my presentation, I described the concept of an actively living network meta-analysis, which combines ideas of living systematic reviews, network meta-analysis and evidence-based sample size calculations. Winning the award for this piece of work constitutes a recognition of the potential usefulness and importance of such a framework.
Although it is not that long ago since I was awarded, so I was not able to experience benefits career-wise, I am certain that the award will strengthen significantly future applications for grants and academic positions. Moreover, winning the Award had a huge impact on my moral. The experience was very motivating, and I came out of it with more confidence and sense of responsibility.
To anyone considering applying for this award; apart from any benefits of winning the award, I find that participating is an important motivation to prepare a good presentation and to think whether and how your work meets the criteria for the evaluation of the applications: originality of thought, high quality science, relevance to the advancement of the science of systematic reviews, and clarity of presentation."
For further information on other prizes which are awarded at the Colloquium, please visit https://colloquium2019.cochrane.org/prizes-and-awards