Multi-language activities in 2019 and beyond: challenges and opportunities for a diverse, globally relevant and sustainable organization

Background: Cochrane groups have produced translations of Cochrane evidence, communicated about Cochrane and conducted Cochrane activities in different languages for many years. Since 2014, this work has been integrated into central publication and organizational processes as part of a translation strategy. We have learned and achieved a lot in this process and want to expand and facilitate multi-language activities further in the coming years. The growth of our multi-language activities will continue to enable Cochrane’s global relevance, reach, impact, and member engagement considering the vast population of the world who does not speak English. Multi-language activities need to be well integrated within the whole organization to succeed, and since 2017, Cochrane’s Knowledge Translation work provides a broader context to help facilitate this. In this special session, we want to highlight our achievements to date and how they are relevant to the whole organization, share the challenges that we face, and discuss how we can work with the entire Cochrane community to address these so that people from diverse linguistic and cultural backgrounds, including English, benefit.

Objective: to share and reflect on what we have achieved through multi-language activities in Cochrane so far, what we plan to do in the future, and why it is important for everyone, including English speakers.

Description: the session will start with an introduction to Cochrane’s translation work. Cochrane groups who lead multi-language activities will then present achievements and challenges of their work in brief videosand cover topics including volunteer engagement, machine translation, and knowledge translation approaches in their contexts. In the second part of the session, invited speakers will share an outlook on future perspectives and research developments, including opportunities for production of Reviews in different languages and use of artificial intelligence to facilitate translation and communication across different languages. Finally, we will discuss how the wider community can contribute to and benefit from these developments and the success of multi-language activities. 

Why is this important: the theme of the Colloquium is diversity. Multi-language activities enable Cochrane to become a more diverse organisation and achieve its mission of evidence-informed healthcare globally. 


Soares-Weiser K1, Bonfill Cosp X2, Ried J3, Rada G4
1 Cochrane, UK
2 Cochrane Iberoamerica, Spain
3 Cochrane Central Executive, Germany
4 Cochrane Chile, Chile

Target audience: 

English speakers, people with interest in learning more about multi-language activities in Cochrane, future developments, how they contribute to a diverse organization

Other contributors:

Beninatto R1
1 Chief Executive, Nimdzi Insights,


Thursday 24 October 2019 - 16:00 to 17:30