American University of Beirut

The Center for Systematic Reviews on Health Policy and Systems Research (SPARK)

Co-Directors: El-Jardali, Fadi; Akl, Elie​

The Center for Systematic Reviews on Health Policy and Systems Research (SPARK) at the American University of Beirut (AUB) is one of four Systematic Review Centers on Health Policy and Systems Research and the first of its kind in the Region. The Center is a joint collaboration between the Faculty of Health Sciences (FHS) and the Faculty of Medicine (FM). SPARK Center was appointed as the General Secretariat of the Global Evidence Synthesis Initiative (GESI).

SPARK specializes in the production of high-quality and timely systematic reviews and rapid reviews that respond to health policy and systems research priority issues at the national and the regional level. SPARK also invests in developing individual and institutional capacity in the Region in conducting systematic reviews and rapid reviews of Health Policy and Systems Research.

SPARK Activities

  • Conduct priority setting exercises with policymakers and other stakeholders, researchers, and civil society to prioritize review topics on health policy and systems research
  • Produce timely systematic reviews and rapid reviews on prioritized topics and review questions
  • Hold national and regional capacity-building workshops to develop individual and institutional capacities in conducting different types of research evidence syntheses
  • Prepare SUPPORT summaries and hold deliberative dialogues to promote the uptake of evidence from systematic reviews and rapid reviews into policies
  • Contribute to the methodology of research synthesis and knowledge production

SPARK develops a diverse set of products including systematic reviews, rapid reviews, scoping reviews, SUPPORT summaries, and evidence gap maps.

Collaborations

SPARK collaborates with national and international partners including the Knowledge to Policy (K2P) Center at the American University of Beirut; WHO Alliance-funded Centers for systematic reviews in China, South Africa and Chile.



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