Knowledge mobilization activities to support decision-making by public citizens using a systematic and living map of evidence and recommendations on COVID-19

Schunemann, Holger J | $993,919

Ontario McMaster University 2021 CIHR Operating Grant

The COVID‑19 pandemic has caused rapidly evolving science, mixed public health and political messages and frank misinformation. With global partners, Cochrane Canada has produced a widely used repository of over 1,200 critically appraised COVID‑19 recommendations with a large global network of collaborators ( The work involves prompt identification, evaluation, and extraction of newly published guideline recommendations (and the supporting research evidence). This proposal outlines research to extend this CIHR-supported work (funding ends June 2021) by enhancing the uptake of these recommendations with defined users. We wish to maximize the impact of COVID-19’s rapidly evolving science and recommendations through ‘highly effective’ plain language recommendations for all citizens. This project will use high quality methods, building on existing plain language templates and approaches to create accessible trustworthy COVID‑19 recommendations. In addition to maintaining the repository, the key additional activities include: (1) developing and testing, through high quality research, plain language versions of priority recommendations with adolescents, parents and general adult citizens; (2) working with high profile decision-makers from among our high-profile partners in Canada and globally, such as the World Health Organization (WHO) to provide tailored support for adapting and implementing recommendations; and (3) integrating new resources for use by decision-makers when implementing COVID‑19 recommendations. Our team provides internationally recognized expertise in knowledge synthesis and mobilization, living guidelines, randomized trials, capacity-building, and content relevant to specific priority populations. Together, this work will further improve comprehensibility, comprehensiveness and use of COVID‑19 recommendations by more stakeholders, including public citizens and health care professionals that desire plain language recommendations.

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