Truth not Triumph: backstage at CIDG. Valedictory lecture by Professor Paul Garner

With experience as a doctor in the UK NHS and in Papua New Guinea, former Cochrane Infectious Diseases Group (CIDG) Coordinating Editor Professor Paul Garner was part of the team that set up Cochrane. Cochrane successfully mainstreamed systematic reviews globally as a method and has been highly influential in institutionalising their use in formal guideline development at the World Health Organization.

The journey, mostly while Paul has been at LSTM, has been incredibly exciting. CIDG Reviews provided evidence that led to the introduction of insecticide treated bed nets, and underpinned the roll out of artemisinin-based combination treatments. At times the CIDG have challenged global health dogmas, and Paul has been subject to aggressive, quite personal attacks for highlighting the fiddles, tweaks, and perversions by people intent on triumph over truth in their field.

Paul became a professor some years ago, and gave a final valedictory lecture on 8th September 2022 with stories of intrigue arising out of the hundreds of author teams he has worked with seeking the “truth”. Professor David Lalloo hosted, while Professor George Davey Smith, Professor of Clinical Epidemiology in Bristol, gave a personal commendation.

The full recording is available here and below.

The editorial base of the Cochrane Infectious Diseases Group is funded by UK aid from the UK government for the benefit of low- and middle-income countries (project number 300342-104). The views expressed do not necessarily reflect the UK government’s official policies.