Job Description - Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine

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Ray Charles
Ray Charles

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Research Assistant in Neglected Tropical Diseases Synthesis
Responsible to:
Professor Paul Garner
Summary of role:
Develop and update Cochrane reviews in neglected tropical diseases
Systematic reviews are central to many global and national guideline in health care. Cochrane has
developed methods, produced a large number of systematic reviews, and has contributed to more
transparent approaches to policy making.
The Cochrane Infectious Diseases Group was established in 1994, one of the first Cochrane Editorial
Groups to be established. We have a strong record in high quality reviews in malaria, tuberculosis,
tropical and other infectious diseases. We provide guidance to author teams throughout the world,
and quality assure their product. It is part of the Effective Health Care Research Consortium, comprising
partners in South Africa, Nigeria, Cameroon, Kenya, India, China, and Norway; as well as strong links
with the World Health Organization in Geneva. This work is funded by a grant from the Department
for International Development.
Since the mid-1990’s, we have been one of the only academic groups performing systematic reviews
in NTD (Nagpal et al. 2013)1. We have carried out some important reviews that have both supported2
and challenged3 policies. Our review of soil transmitted helminths has attracted widespread publicity,
reported in the Guardian, featured on Radio 4 “More or Less”, and used in WHO Guideline
Main tasks
To work with a team of authors in updating one or two priority reviews in neglected tropical
diseases related to mass drug administration, including albendazole for filariasis.
To join 2-3 author teams and contribute to the production of Cochrane reviews in these areas.
To help with aspects of editing, refereeing and topic appraisal of reviews
To contribute to the teams’ postgraduate training portfolio in evidence synthesis at a level
commensurate with their experience, skills and interests.
We expect the successful applicant to participate in a review relevant to Countdown, Cochrane
Infectious Diseases and in line with their own interests. This may include a) an appraisal of information
about acceptability of mass drug administration; or b) diagnostic test accuracy review in a topic with a
good reference standard.
The successful applicant will have opportunities to contribute to submissions for grant funding, to
contribute to partner capacity development, and to become involved with other research projects in
: Nagpal S, Sinclair D, Garner P (2013) Has the NTD Community Neglected Evidence-Based Policy? PLoS Negl Trop Dis 7(7):
e2238. doi:10.1371/journal.pntd.0002238.
Adinarayanan S, Critchley JA, Das PK, Gelband H. Diethylcarbamazine (DEC)-medicated salt for community-based control
of lymphatic filariasis. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2007, Issue 1. Art. No.: CD003758.
Taylor-Robinson DC, Maayan N, Soares-Weiser K, Donegan S, Garner P. Deworming drugs for soil-transmitted intestinal
worms in children: effects on nutritional indicators, haemoglobin, and school performance. Cochrane Database of
Systematic Reviews2015, Issue 7. Art. No.: CD000371. DOI: 10.1002/14651858.CD000371.pub6.
dialogue with your line manager. You would work on a daily basis with dynamic and friendly Liverpool
team. Your main points of contact will be, in alphabetical order: Paul Garner (joint co-ordinating
editor), Anne-Marie Stephani (managing editor). Others you will work with include Vittoria Lutje
(information retrieval specialist), Martha Richardson (statistician), Deirdre Walshe, (assistant editor)
and Phil Hinds (editorial assistant). The Consortium is organised in the Liverpool office through Paula
You will need to be able to work to deadlines. Post is available now. You will need the right to work in
the UK. For any further questions about the post please contact [email protected]
You will gain a wide spectrum of experience and skills in current methods of research synthesis.
Person specification
Education &
Master’s degree in epidemiology, public health,
clinical tropical medicine, or vector biology
Postgraduate qualification or PHD in
epidemiology or related quantitative
Postgraduate teaching qualification
In biomedical or social science research in low and Completed a systematic review of
middle income countries
Critical appraisal
postgraduate level
at Author of a Cochrane review, and
experienced in the software used
Completed a substantive quantitative analysis, either Experience using GRADE
a systematic review or an applied research project
Excellent abilities to write in plain English
Experienced in teaching health
professionals at postgraduate level
Track record in published research
Working in a multidisciplinary team
Skills &
Clear evidence of critical insight into priority policy Demonstrable teaching skills to
questions in international health relevant to postgraduate students
infectious diseases
Good communicator
Experienced in editing and writing
scientific articles
Ability to work as part of a team as well as
Computer literate with working knowledge of MS
Office applications
Excellent time management and organisational skills
Systematic reviews and RCT trials basics
Initiative, and ability to organise own time
Fastidious attention to detail
Able to work flexibly
Enthusiastic approach to work
Committed to capacity development
Ability to work collaborative
Essential to be interested in developing countries
and infectious disease problems
Fixed term
Needs to be able to travel overseas
Version:23 Nov 2016
Needs to have right to work in the

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