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Leeds-Bradford local group meeting: Empirically optimising complex interventions

Written by Ciarán McInerney on . Posted in Sections and local group meeting reports

In a change to our usual habits, on 4 December, the Leeds-Bradford local group hosted a lunchtime session in collaboration with the University of Leeds Clinical Trials Research Unit. Our honoured speaker was Rebecca Walwyn, acting associate professor of clinical trials methodology. Rebecca is interested in maximising the efficiency of, and information obtained from, clinical trials of complex interventions. Extra chairs were brought in to fill an increasingly packed room just minutes before her talk entitled 'Empirically optimising complex interventions: factorial experimental design'.

Rebecca’s approach considers trial design as the best port of call for handling complex interventions, rather than relying on convoluted post-trial analysis methods. She spoke about Collins et als proposal for factorial designs to evaluate independent healthcare interventions efficiently when we assume no interactions. Rebecca discussed how factorial design are far more useful than merely estimating simple effects, but can also provide information on main and interaction effects. Further details about Dr Rebecca Walwyn can be found at

Abstracts of the speakers talks and their slides are available at the Leeds-Bradford local group’s website, along with all our other talks for the’19/’20 season. Recordings of the talks will shortly be available on the RSS YouTube channel in the Leeds-Bradford playlist.


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