Charting the evolution of
fair tests of treatments.
In the 13th century, the English Franciscan monk Roger Bacon, often regarded as England’s first scientist, asserted that “without experiment nothing can be sufficiently known” Bacon, Roger (1266) Opus maius. MS Digby 325, 15th century manuscript. Bodleian Library, Oxford.
The James Lind Library came to us in 2011 as a text-heavy website containing many hundreds of scholarly records and articles. Users told us they found it hard to find information on the website, and felt discouraged from exploring.
Our challenge was to bring the collection to life, and encourage readers to explore.
We were helped greatly in this by the visual beauty of many of the original sources contained in the site, such as Francis Bacon’s manuscript shown above.
We worked intensively with the client, the James Lind Initiative (funded by the UK National Institute for Health Research), to identify:
We customised the WordPress back-end to provide tailored support for the key Content Types: Essays, Articles and Records.
We developed a taxonomy of concepts and created editorial tools to support indexing and integration of the different content types.
The front-end design was focused on highlighting the visual appeal of the primary Records. Most of these exist as static scanned images, so we created a gallery for readers to browse them and a layout that integrates transcripts, full bibliographic information, downloads and media, and links readers onwards to related Library content.
The Library continues to chart the ongoing development of research methods, such as those emerging during Covid. As an Editor of the Library, Douglas has responsibility for developing material on making evidence serve the needs of patients and the wider public. He also works closely with the Managing Editor Mike Clarke on creating new educational resources based on the Library content.
You can follow James Lind on Twitter and keep up to date with new material as it comes out.
“Minervation has been central to the lasting success of the James Lind Library. They share my commitment to improving health care through a better understanding of what makes reliable research.”
Co-Founder of The James Lind Library