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Box 18.6.a: The Cochrane Individual Patient Data Meta-analysis Methods Group.

The Individual Patient Data Meta-analysis Methods Group (IPD MA MG) comprises individuals who are involved or interested in the conduct of systematic reviews that include IPD and related methodological research. The Group aims to provide guidance to those undertaking IPD meta-analyses within Cochrane reviews.


Activities of IPD MA MG members include:

  • undertaking IPD meta-analyses;

  • undertaking empirical research, for example in the relative benefits of IPD meta-analyses compared with other forms of systematic review; and using information collected for IPD meta-analyses to explore whether aspects of design, analysis and reporting of randomized trials and systematic reviews may be sources of bias and heterogeneity;

  • helping authors of Cochrane reviews decide whether it would be appropriate for their systematic review to be conducted using IPD and, if so, to offer advice on how to do so;

  • offering training workshops at Cochrane Colloquia and disseminating training materials from these; and

  • maintaining a register of reviews that have used (or will use) IPD and a database of methodological research projects and meta-analyses.


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