David Bousfield


I monitor the impact of technology on the use and communication of scientific, technological and medical (STM) information. I have practical experience in all of the major disciplines of digital STM publishing and retain close links with biomedical end-user markets. With this combined knowledge I provide services that help STM research organisations and publishers achieve better outcomes by improving the efficiency with which they create, communicate and use information. In my spare time I am a fund-raiser for a medical not-for-profit, LEPRA, and a voluntary consultant at the Cranfield Trust.

Experience Summary

I have over thirty five years’ experience working in and around the STM publishing industry. I have held strategic and executive management positions within a FTSE 100 company [Reed Elsevier] and as an independent contractor I have worked in the US [NIH] and Brazil [Federal university system] specializing in projects relating to biomedical publishing, education and publishing informatics.

Most recently I was Vice President and senior STM analyst at Outsell Inc., a US research and advisory firm focused on the publishing, information, and education industries. I still write occasionally as an Affiliate Analyst for them.

Currently working on a number of projects: using altmetrics to guide publishing strategy; helping to develop open access strategies for scholarly publishers; commercializing informatics software, teaching graduate students (and their mentors) how to do better research.

Key achievements

These include the commercial development of the Trends in magazine brand (1979-1987), receiving a commendation for editorial excellence from the Society for Neuroscience (1985), the launch of Elsevier’s first online journals with OCLC in the mid-1990s, the commercial development of the first scientific social networking portal BioMedNet (1997-2003), developing models of online user behaviour for NCBI (2006-2007), the development of web learning resources to support biomedical research (2006-present), and most recently, using altmetrics and data mash-ups to quantify publishing trends (2012-present) .

Skills & Knowledge

Leadership, innovation, strategy, implementation, management, marketing, commercial development, biomedicine, healthcare, publishing, Web technologies, informatics, analysis, research, training, statistics.

Experience Details

April 2005 – present: Self-employed consultant trading as Ganesha Associates, Cambridge, UK.

Recent clients include: Thomson Reuters, Elsevier, Wolters Kluwer Health, BioQL/UnSilo, Bazian, Company of Biologists.

April 2006 – present: Visiting Researcher, Trainer and Consultant, Federal University System, Brasil

Employed to identify the causes of poor publishing performance in Masters and Doctoral students and to design and implement remedial training courses. Currently using Moodle open software to create Web-based information resources to develop team working skills.

October 2009 – September 2011: Vice President and Lead Analyst STM, January 2013 – present Affiliate Analyst,, Outsell Inc, London, UK

Responsible for analysis and advisory services focused on the STM information sector, including journal, book and database publishing, relevant areas of informatics such as text mining, semantic web, social media tools, and specialized workflow applications such as clinical decision support. [See also video]

July 2006-July 2007: Systems Expert, NCBI, NLM, NIH, Bethesda, MD

I worked with senior scientists and software engineers to develop tools to measure end-user behaviour within the Entrez database system. This involved the development of a database to capture, structure, verify and analyse terabytes of daily transaction data, plus the creation of statistical models describing how large informatics databases and tools such as PubMed, BLAST, Genome Projects, Homologene, etc are actually being used by researchers, clinicians and the general public.

May 2003- April 2005: Director Business Development – Life Sciences, Elsevier Life Sciences, London, UK.

I was responsible for identifying and implementing business development opportunities across all business units within Elsevier Science’s Life Sciences division.

October 1997 – May 2003: Publishing Director, BioMedNet/Current Trends, London, UK.

I had profit and loss responsibility for approx. 100 staff and a turnover of ca. £20m publishing the Trends in…, Drug Discovery Today and Current Opinion… current awareness magazine brands, plus the first social networking website for scientists, BioMedNet.

November 1979 – October 1997: Editor and subsequently Director, Elsevier Magazines & Newsletters Division, Cambridge and Oxford, UK

I was Editor of Trends in Neurosciences from November 1979 until 1987. Subsequently, as Publisher, I launched over ten controlled circulation/subscription magazines and newsletters including Drug Discovery Today, Trends in Ecology & Evolution and Trends in Molecular Medicine. I was responsible for launching Elsevier’s first online journal, Immunology Today Online, with OCLC in 1994. I was a core member of the initial ScienceDirect development team. I also played a key role in the acquisition of The Lancet and subsequent development of The Lancet Online.

From 1992 to 1997 I was also Director of Elsevier’s Advanced Technology (EAT) group publishing magazines, newsletters, handbooks and conferences for the engineering, computer security and semiconductor industries.

Volunteer work:

  • Cranfield Trust
  • LEPRA, fundraiser, see YouTube link.


  • PhD, Neuroscience, University College London, 1976
  • BSc, Theoretical Physics, Imperial College London, 1971


  • Portuguese, writing, reading, translation good; spoken, fair
  • Hindi, elementary

Academic Publications:

  1. Bousfield J. D. 1977 Columnar organisation and the visual cortex of the rabbit. Brain Res. 136, 154-158
  2. Bousfield, J. D.1978 Some properties of extrastriate visual units in the cortex of the rabbit. Brain Res. 149, 365-378
  3. Bousfield, J. D. 1978 Rheotaxis and chemoreception in the freshwater snail Biomphalaria glabrata (SAY): Estimation of the molecular weight of the active factors, Biological Bulletin 154, 361-373
  4. Bousfield, J. D. 1979 Plant extracts and chemically triggered positive rheotaxis in Biomphalaria glabrata (Say), snail intermediate host of Schistosoma mansoni (Sambon), J. app. Ecol. 16, 681-690
  5. Bousfield, J. D. 1979 Snail-paced parasite that is marching across South America, Nature 279, 573-574
  6. Bousfield, J.D. 1979 Urban deprivation in the heart of the Amazon, Nature, 279, 752-753
  7. Bousfield, J. D. 1979 Thais put their faith in folk medicine, Nature 282, 9
  8. Bousfield, J.D., Gomm, J., McCapra, F. and Thomas, J.D., 1980. The molecular characteristics of chemoreception in the snail Biomphalaria glabrata (Say). J. appl. Ecol. 17, 631-639
  9. Pessoa, V. F. and Bousfield, J. D., 1980 Unusual choroid pigment distribution in the retina of a south American frog. Vision Res 20, 545-547
  10. Bousfield, J. D. and Pessoa, V. F., 1980 Changes in ganglion cell density during post-metamorphic development in a neotropical tree frog Hyla raniceps. Vision Res 20, 501-510
  11. Bousfield JD, Tait AI, Thomas JD & Towner-Jones D 1981. Behavioural studies on the nature of stimuli responsible for triggering mucus trail following in the freshwater snail Biomphalaria glabrata (Say). Malacol Rev 14: 49-64.
  12. Andrade, B. L. S., Pessoa, V. F., Bousfield, J. D. and Clarke, R. J. 1985 Unusual distribution of ganglion cells in the retina of the three-toed sloth (Bradypus tridactylus). Brazilian J. Med Biol Res 18, 636A
  13. Andrade, B. L. S., Pessoa, V. F., Clarke, R. J. and Bousfield, J. D. 1985 Estudo da preguica mostro como o olhar determina o olho. Ciencia Hoje 7, 8-9
  14. Costa, B. L. S. A., Pessoa, V. F., Bousfield, J. D. , and Clarke, R. J.. 1987 Unusual distribution of ganglion cells in the retina of the three-toed sloth (Bradypus variegates) Brazilian J Med Biol Res. 20, 741-748
  15. Andrade-da-Costa,B. L, Pessoa, V. F., Bousfield, J.D. and Clarke, R. J.. 1989 Ganglion cell size and distribution in the retina of the two-toed sloth (Choloepus didactylus L.). Brazilian J Med Biol Res. 22(2), 233-6.
  16. Bousfield D. 2009 Identifying reasons for failure in biomedical research and publishing. Braz J Med Biol Res, 2009, 42(7) 589-592

Professional Associations:

  • Member Society for Neuroscience. 1980 – present
  • Member Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society. 2006, 2008