Managing health research capacity strengthening consortia:a systematised review of the published literature

Nadia Tagoe gives a brief of her recently published systematic review on HRCS consortia;

There is currently a strong interest and greater investment in health research capacity strengthening (HRCS) initiatives in low and middle-income countries. Increasingly, this is being done through HRCS consortia. The management of the consortia is instrumental to the achievement of consortia goals, but it is unclear what guides the management approaches adopted and how these approaches impact on consortia success. We conducted a review to ascertain the evidence base for consortium management and its role in the capacity strengthening agenda. Our results indicate increasing efforts being made in the HRCS field in reporting consortia outcomes. However, very little attention has been given to consortium management in the published literature, and the current evidence lacks high-quality empirical research. The literature highlights relational issues such as equity and power relations though these were not examined in detail. Strategies and underlying factors for operational processes such as establishment and governance were hardly explored. Besides, the linkages between relational and operational elements in practice and how they affect the achievement of capacity strengthening goals were not discussed. This demonstrates the need to expand research efforts in consortium management to inform HRCS policy and practice. The publication