US-RSE Newsletter

July 2020 Newsletter

Published: Jul 14, 2020

In this bi-monthly newsletter, we share recent, current, and planned activities of the US-RSE Association, and related news that we think is of interest to US-RSE members. Newsletters are also available on our website alongside the growing resources and information on the US-RSE Association. A sign-up option for our newsletter is available here.

In this issue:

US-RSE Governance & Elections

The initial US-RSE Steering Committee came together to bootstrap the US-RSE Association, and as the Association grows and matures, the current Steering Committee recognizes that it’s time to move to a more formal governance model to provide a stable long-term foundation for the association and to open up the Steering Committee to new members. Late last month we published the official governance structure for the US-RSE Association and announced plans for upcoming steering committee elections this coming December. This is an exciting next step in the growth and maturity of the organization.

Call for Submissions: RSE Community Workshop at PEARC20

We are thrilled about hosting a Research Software Engineers Community Workshop, July 31, 2020 as part of the PEARC20 conference. The workshop will feature a combination of talks and discussion groups. Everyone can participate in the workshop by giving a short talk or joining as a general participant. The workshop will help RSEs attending PEARC20 to connect, as well as provide an opportunity for non-RSEs to learn more about RSE roles and work.

Talks from all research fields and concerning all types of technology are welcome. Group submissions with multiple authors are encouraged, however we ask that you designate only one author as presenter. Proposals from individuals who may be first-time conference presenters or consider themselves to be part of a group that is underrepresented in the research software engineering community are particularly encouraged. Talks can be 5, 10, or 20 minutes in length and will be presented live during the workshop through the conference platform Brella.

Registration for PEARC20 is required to participate. Since PEARC20 is virtual, this is also a chance to get to know the community without the need for travel funds.

Deadline for submissions has been extended to July 15! Submit your talk via EasyChair.

Call for Submissions: RSE-HPC-2020 Workshop at SC20

We are excited to announce the Research Software Engineers in HPC Workshop (RSE-HPC-2020) to be held at SC20 this fall in Atlanta, GA, USA or virtually! This will be a half-day workshop on Monday, November 16. The workshop will bring together RSEs and allies involved in HPC, from all over the world, to grow the RSE community by establishing and strengthening professional networks of current RSEs and RSE leaders. We’ll discuss the current activities and plans of national RSE organizations, discuss the needs of RSEs and RSE groups, and write a report on ways RSE organizations can help address these.

We’ve issued a call for position papers and discussion topic proposals on issues of interest to RSEs. The deadline for submissions is Friday, August 14, 2020. Some submitters will be invited to present their papers at the workshop as lightning talks or to participate as panelists where appropriate.

For more details see the workshop website at:

Exchanging Best Practices with other RSEs

Do you wonder what best practices other RSEs are using? Would you like to know what tools best support their work? Do you have issues that you’d like to bring up in front of other RSEs? Tune in to the monthly Xpert Network Webinar, co-sponsored by US-RSE. For dates and links see

CZI call for Essential Open Source Software for Science proposals

The Chan Zuckerberg Initiative (CZI) is inviting applications in support of open source software projects that are essential to biomedical research through their Essential Open Source Software for Science program. The goal of the program is to support software maintenance, growth, development, and community engagement for these critical tools.

FAIR for Research Software update

The FAIR 4 Research Software Working Group (FAIR4RS WG) is beginning to coordinate a range of existing community-led discussions on how to define and effectively apply FAIR principles to research software, to achieve adoption of these principles.

Four subgroups have been formed to advance the first aim of the WG, to define FAIR guiding principles for research software. The four subgroups will work until end of September 2020 on the following tasks:

  1. “A fresh look at FAIR for Research Software” will examine the FAIR principles in the context of research software from scratch, not based on pre-existing work. Lead: Daniel S. Katz
  2. FAIR work in other contexts will examine efforts to apply FAIR principles to different forms including workflows, notebooks and training material, to provide insights for the definition and implementation of FAIR principles for research software. Lead: Mateusz Kuzak
  3. Definition of research software will review existing definitions of research software and will specify the scope for the WG outputs. Lead: Morane Gruenpeter
  4. Review of new research related to FAIR Software will review new research around FAIR software that has come out since the release of the Towards FAIR principles for research software paper in August 2019. Lead: Neil Chue Hong

The FAIR4RS WG can be joined here and is jointly convened as an RDA Working Group, a FORCE11 Working Group, and Research Software Alliance (ReSA) Taskforce.

Interesting Events

Some other events coming up may be of interest to RSEs:

  • SORSE: A Series of Online Research Software Events - an international answer to the COVID-19-induced cancellation of many national RSE conferences, to provide an opportunity for RSEs to develop and grow their skills, build new collaborations and engage with RSEs worldwide. It has a rolling deadline for events to be proposed as part of the series, and the next deadline is on July 31st. The events will take place at different times to accommodate different time zones. Submitters can indicate preferred dates and times.
  • 2020 Collegeville Workshop on Scientific Software (July 21 - 23, 2020) - brings community members together to advance developer productivity for scientific software
  • Sustainable Software in HEP (July 22, 2020) - to bring together experts from the High Energy Physics (HEP) community as well as those from outside to share their experiences and practices, and to articulate a vision that helps the HEP community create a work plan to implement elements of software sustainability
  • 9th Workshop on Python for High-Performance and Scientific Computing (PyHPC20) (November 15, 2020) - to be held as part of SC20, this workshop aims to help address the needs of the community and to help the community shape future directions in high-performance and scientific computing

Recent Job Postings

These opportunities were recently posted to the RSE Careers page:

Interesting Reads

Items you may have missed on the blog and Slack:

Get Involved

There are lots of ways to get involved with the US-RSE community. Of course, you can join us on Slack or volunteer for an interview with the RSE Stories podcast. But we’re also looking for ideas and help in many other places. See our list of projects and let us know how you’d like to help. Help with things like the Website Committee, Social Media, and Community Engagement are all needed.