Electrical impedance tomography (EIT) has undergone 30 years of development. Functional chest examinations with this technology are considered clinically relevant, especially for monitoring regional lung ventilation in mechanically ventilated patients and for regional pulmonary function testing in patients with chronic lung diseases. As EIT becomes an established medical technology, it requires consensus examination, nomenclature, data analysis and interpretation schemes. Such consensus is needed to compare, understand and reproduce study findings from and among different research groups, to enable large clinical trials and, ultimately, routine clinical use. Recommendations of how EIT findings can be applied to generate diagnoses and impact clinical decision-making and therapy planning are required. This consensus paper was prepared by an international working group, collaborating on the clinical promotion of EIT called TRanslational EIT developmeNt stuDy group. It addresses the stated needs by providing (1) a new classification of core processes involved in chest EIT examinations and data analysis, (2) focus on clinical applications with structured reviews and outlooks (separately for adult and neonatal/paediatric patients), (3) a structured framework to categorise and understand the relationships among analysis approaches and their clinical roles, (4) consensus, unified terminology with clinical user-friendly definitions and explanations, (5) a review of all major work in thoracic EIT and (6) recommendations for future development (193 pages of online supplements systematically linked with the chief sections of the main document). We expect this information to be useful for clinicians and researchers working with EIT, as well as for industry producers of this technology.