Prof. Clarke has 25 years experience of the conduct and oversight of randomised trials, systematic reviews and other types of prospective research. His work on systematic reviews includes the central collection of individual participant data from hundreds of randomised trials of treatments for women with breast cancer, leading to internationally-renowned reports that influence the care of women worldwide. This research, his other systematic reviews, his role in assessing tens of thousands of reports for the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials and his many years of teaching about randomised trials and systematic reviews have provided him with unique insights into the conduct of a vast number of randomised trials. He is building on this experience when designing and conductinging research into the methods of evaluations of health and social care. He has been actively involved in the design, conduct, monitoring and reporting of several randomised trials that have recruited more than 1000 participants, in breast cancer, maternity care, poisoning and sub-arachnoid haemorrhage.
Prof Clarke is the inaugural Director of the All Ireland Hub for Trials Methodology Research, where he is expanding his existing portfolio of methodology research to meet the overarching aim of the Hub to strengthen clinical trial methodology on the island of Ireland. This includes the development of beacons of excellence in specific areas of methodology research relating to trials, reviews and public health, including the use of evidence synthesis in clinical trials and the development of methods to keep clinical trials simple, pragmatic and relevant to a wide range of practitioners, patients, the public and policy makers.
Prof Clarke has been a leading proponent of the importance of using systematic reviews in the design and reporting of clinical trials for some time, and his work on core outcome sets (as part of the COMET Initiative) also serves to improve the quality and usefulness of trials and reviews. His research reflects his strong interest in increasing the capacity for reviews and trials, and in improving their accessibility, in particular in low- and middle-income countries. He is Podcast and Journal Club Editor for The Cochrane Library and is a founder of Evidence Aid, seeking to make it easier to use evidence from reviews in natural disasters and other humanitarian emergencies.
Courses in the CER Master
Advanced methods in randomised controlled trials I