The Campbell Collaboration was established in 2000. Since then it has produced 147 systematic reviews in the fields of crime and justice, education, international development, nutrition and social welfare. In 2014, the Campbell Collaboration introduced Minimum Expectations for Campbell Collaboration Intervention Reviews (MECCIR adapted from Cochrane MECIR standards). To date, there has no study of the quality of Campbell reviews and their reporting or the effects of adopting MECCIR.
To describe the methodological and reporting characteristics of Campbell reviews published after 2011 and evaluate the effect of the introduction of MECCIR.
We included Campbell reviews published between January 2011 to January 2018. We developed a data abstraction form based upon criteria from the Page 2016 study of reviews in healthcare, MECCIR and AMSTAR (A MeaSurement Tool to Assess systematic Reviews). Items included:
1) basic information, like publication year, number of authors, co-registration information, co-ordinating group, source of funding etc.;
2) methodological characteristics, including protocol, data sources, study selection, data collection and analysis, etc.;
3) results characteristics, especially those corresponding to methods, such as analysis results;
4) characteristics of discussion, like subheadings, limitations, etc..
The AMSTAR 2 will be applied to assess methodology, and reporting data will be summarized as frequencies and percentages.
We included 98 reviews (52 from October 2014 to January 2018 and 46 between January 2011 and September 2014) across five co-ordinating groups, including Crime and Justice (22), Education (26), International Development (28), Social Welfare (37), and Nutrition (1), and 14 reviews were labelled with more than two groups. The mean number of authors was five (range 2 to 13), and the corresponding authors are from 13 countries, most commonly the USA (37 reviews). Of all reviews, 71 (73%) had a title form, 89 (91%) provided a protocol, and 64 (65%) had plain language summaries. Further data will be presented at the conference.
This is the first time that the methodological and reporting characteristics of Campbell reviews has been investigated, specifically comparison of standards before and after the release of MECCIR. By presenting the current situation of Campbell reviews, our results could contribute to the improvement of future work.
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