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Table 2 Framework synthesis method applied in the current review

From: “Children are precious cargo; we don’t let them take any risks!”: Hearing from adults on safety and risk in children’s active play in schools: a systematic review

Framework synthesis stage Synthesis steps Application in this review
Stage 1 Developing an initial conceptual framework 1. Familiarisation: Becoming immersed in the data Undertaken during full-text screening and study selection (both stages), in addition to reading quantitative literature, systematic and narrative reviews for the field, and handsearching references.
2. Framework selection: Identification of either an existing framework or key theory and themes in the literature to inform the framework Systematic extraction of salient themes and findings from 18 studies identified in Step 1, identification of relevant theory and definitions (see Additional file 3 for full description).
Stage 2 Recognising patterns of data through an iterative process of aggregation and configuration 3. Indexing: Systematically tagging and labelling key themes in the data Data extracted, labelled, and indexed in NVivo software, using codebook developed from initial conceptual framework. Data not fitting framework analysed inductively.
4. Charting: Devising a series of thematic charts to allow the full pattern across papers to be explored and reviewed Themes developed and revised iteratively in NVivo. Findings/ themes charted in Excel, patterns across data and studies explored.
5. Mapping and interpretation: Drawing together the synthesis, consideration of how the themes answer the review question Conceptual framework developed further to reflect review findings. Analysis of relationships between themes, themes mapped and illustrated in Figures using PowerPoint.
  1. The ‘Framework synthesis stage’ and ‘Synthesis steps’ columns are informed by the work of Brunton et al. [64] and Gough et al. [66]