In this instalment of the CIDG 'Meet the Editor' series, we talk with Dr Joseph Pryce from the UK.
Before becoming a CIDG Editor, Joe worked as a Research Assistant at the CIDG editorial base in Liverpool. In that role he produced a series of systematic reviews that assessed the impact of vector-control interventions on malaria transmission. These reviews were used to help develop the first formal global malaria vector control guidelines. Since then, he has also contributed to reviews assessing the effectiveness and safety of treatments for malaria and other neglected tropical diseases (NTDs).
- Could you describe where you currently work and what you do there?
I’ve recently joined an NHS research programme called ‘Born in Bradford’, an internationally-recognised birth cohort study which has primarily aimed to find out what keeps families healthy and happy. Working closely with healthcare professionals, schools, and communities, one of my primary roles as a Senior Research Fellow is to co-design, implement and evaluate a suite of interventions that aim to improve mental health outcomes for secondary school age children.
- What is a typical day for you?
Currently, I’m working with the local authority and voluntary sector organisations to map existing interventions that are being implemented for child and adolescent mental health, and reviewing literature and expert opinion to identify new evidence-based interventions that may impact on these outcomes. As the project progresses, I will be using collected data and a range of quasi-experimental methods to evaluate the impact of these interventions.
- What prompted you to work in this area?
The Bradford community is unique and diverse, but sadly Bradford city has some of the highest rates of child poverty and ill health in the country, and I find the idea of working in a setting that reduces these inequalities very inspiring.
Ultimately my interest is in conducting research that has the potential to improve health and quality of life for disadvantaged societies, particularly through implementing and evaluating interventions. These interests similarly underly my contributions to the Cochrane Infectious Diseases Group as an author and editor for reviews that evaluate public health interventions for malaria and other infectious diseases.
- What are the major challenges that still remain in your field?
A challenge with assessing the impact of public health interventions is that many are not suitable for evaluation using randomised controlled trials, which are generally considered to provide the highest quality of evidence. I am interested in the use and development of quasi-experimental methods as a robust alternative for measuring the impact of public health interventions.
- How did you first hear about Cochrane?
I would say probably in a lecture during my Masters degree from Professor Paul Garner on the methodology for systematic reviews and meta-analysis.
- What is the most rewarding aspect of being involved with Cochrane?
The most rewarding part for me has been presenting the findings of my research to guideline development panels at the World Health Organization and knowing that the results have contributed to global policy and, in some cases, led to changes that will provide more effective treatment for patients.
- Please list three words you would associate with Cochrane.
Clarity, transparency, meticulousness!
- What do you do in your spare time?
I enjoy being outdoors, going for walks with my dog, playing five-a-side football and, whenever I have time, watching Liverpool FC.
The CIDG editorial base is located at the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine in Liverpool, UK. The CIDG is led by Professor Paul Garner (Co-ordinating Editor) and Deirdre Walshe (Managing Editor). Over 600 authors from some 52 countries contribute to the preparation of the Cochrane Reviews. They are supported by an international team of Editors, each with topic or methodological expertise. The CIDG’s main areas of work are on determination of the effects of interventions on the prevention or treatment infectious diseases of relevance to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.