Our vision is to develop a global ‘data access and results sharing’ network that enables existing data to be readily used in cross-cohort analyses to understand population differences in the risk of diabetes and obesity.
The federated approach means that, in time, all cohorts can propose and lead analyses. The network will therefore be democratic – all those with responsibility for studies will be able to play a central role rather than just providing data for others.
We are currently bringing cohorts together to form ad hoc consortia around exemplar research questions that benefit from a cross-cohort approach. Over time, further ad hoc consortia will form and disperse dynamically based on shared scientific interest.
Each ad hoc consortium will be autonomous with transparent processes to review research proposals. Individual cohorts retain control of their data and actively decide for themselves whether or not to participate in each research question. The decision whether or not to participate may be influenced by scientific interest, whether the cohort has relevant data and local ELSI considerations.