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The secret sauce to growing your member engagement

The Bone & Joint Journal is the flagship journal of the British Editorial Society of Bone & Joint Society, one of the UK’s longest-established scholarly societies (founded 1953). The journal is one of four published by the Society.

The challenge for B&J is the same as for many societies: how to help their users find the most relevant content. Paradoxically, in a digital age, with many more tools for content discovery, with increasing proportion of content published open access, how can users find relevant content quickly? Although the B&J journals have high impact factors, there are of course other publishers with content in this domain and there is other information like podcasts and videos that members would like to find

The secret sauce to growing your member engagement

The answer, created together with partner Molecular Connections, is a subject portal, OrthoSearch. This recently launched service provides a first point of contact for any researcher in orthopaedics and a one-stop-shop for all content related to that specialty.

Semantically Enriched and Networked Content for Digital Research, Analysis and Visualization
A single search reveals relevant content from over 170 orthopaedic journals as well as content from the major general medical journals, conference proceedings, related preprints, standards, and other content types. A comparison between OrthoSearch and searching with Google Scholar or PubMed reveals not only a much richer and relevantsubject collection, and many more content types, than on other discovery platform.

Simple Search of OrthoSearch
Figure 1 Simple search of OrthoSearch

Searches can be filtered by article type, by journal, and, most importantly, by subject area. This makes use of a new, 19,000-term subject-based ontology, developed by B&J. Hence, a search for “surgery” with the filter “knee” retrieves articles including such terms as “patellofemoral pain”, known more widely as “runner’s knee”.

An important criterion for the new platforms is to provide a qualitative appraisal, where relevant. To this end, impact factor, CiteScore and Altmetric scores are included, to give an idea of the context for this content.

Content indexed via OrthoSearch is from the vast expanse of the orthopaedic literature and not exclusively from the Society. OrthoSearch embraces content from many other content producers. There are podcasts, for example, from SAGE Orthopaedics, as well as relevant guidance from NICE, the UK advisory body, as well as instructional videos from the platform OrthoMedia, a linked service from Bone & Joint.

Users can set up alerts to receive email updates in their chosen area, using keywords. This service acts as an aggregator, linking alerts from many publications, something that could only be done by subscribing to updates from individual journals currently.

Finally, there is a simple feedback button on every page, enabling users to suggest additional content or indexing terms.

Commented Richard Hollingsworth, MD of Bone and Joint Publishing: “We are very excited to launch OrthoSearch with our partner Molecular Connections. It was developed after many conversations within the orthopaedic community highlighted a need to bring more relevancy and specificity to search across the specialty as well as bringing in other content types to uncover previously hard to find content. OrthoSearch is a tool developed with great input from our community; this is something we will continue, to ensure its evolution meets the needs of our users”.

Jignesh Bhate, CEO of Molecular Connections, stated “Working with the Bone and Joint Society has been a pleasure throughout. They provided very clear goals for the new service, as well as thorough testing with users, and, most importantly, they have set up an analytics tool to identify which parts of the new service are most widely used. We are looking forward to the longer-term feedback as the service becomes better known.”  


Ortho Search represents a major advance for subject-based societies, providing real value for society members, in fact for any researcher in the domain, providing richer resources and more powerful searching than available from any general-purpose search engine. By providing free access, Ortho Search shows that subject-based societies can benefit their members and at the same time improve the search and discovery process for everyone in the domain: a win-win for the entire community.



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Krishna K.

VP, Business Development & Marketing

Molecular Connections Pvt. Ltd.
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