The Methodology Committee works to develop and update methodological standards for patient-centered comparative clinical effectiveness research (PCOR), and to develop a translation framework to guide the choice of study designs for specific research questions.

Up to 15 members of the Methodology Committee who are experts in various scientific fields are appointed by the PCORI Board of Governors (Board). Additionally, the Director of the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality and the Director of the National Institutes of Health (or their designees) serve on the Committee.

The Methodology Committee's PCORI Methodology Standards provide minimal standards for the conduct of scientifically valid PCOR. They address study design, analytic methods, and other best practices. The initial Methodology Standards were approved by the PCORI Board of Governors and released in December 2012 and most recently updated in February 2019.

The PCORI Methodology Report to the Board explains the context and rationale for the standards, and it includes examples illustrating how good methodology makes a difference to patients and their care. PCORI released the first PCORI Methodology Report in November 2013 and released updated versions in July 2017 and January 2019.

Future State Vision for the Methodology Committee

The future state vision for the Methodology Committee is one that advances PCORI’s new strategic plan, which includes National Priorities for Health and a Research Agenda, through the following activities:

  • Prioritizing and developing inclusive, high-quality methodology standards, and developing rigorous methodological approaches for the conduct of PCOR;
  • Convening methodological experts to advance methods for the use of real-world evidence in new areas of PCORI focus;
  • Facilitating the utilization of standards and cutting-edge methods for PCOR through guidance for the research community;​ 
  • Serving as a resource to PCORI on methodological approaches related to the new National Priorities for Health and Research Agenda;​
  • Providing diverse perspectives and methodological expertise; and
  • Strengthening collaboration with other PCORI panels and committees.

Posted: September 29, 2011; Updated: June 1, 2022

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