US-RSE January 2024 Newsletter
Published: Jan 24, 2024
In this 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. To receive our newsletter, join US-RSE.
In this issue:
- Two-year Alfred P. Sloan Foundation Grant
- US-RSE Conference 2024
- Steering Committee Elections
- Community News
- Interesting Events and Opportunities
- Interesting Reads, Videos, or Podcasts
- US-RSE Outreach
- US-RSE Financials
- Get Involved
- Recent Job Postings
Two-year Alfred P. Sloan Foundation Grant
The generous grant by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation will provide support in three important areas: the recruitment of dedicated staff, the development of activities and initiatives, and the enhancement of organizational tools and community well-being.
- A large part of US-RSE’s success has been due to the dedication and hard work of volunteers. While we don’t want to see the community-driven nature change, we recognize that relying on pure volunteer effort is limiting. For this reason the two new staff positions of a full-time Community Manager and a part-time Executive Director were created. We are excited that Sophia Anyatonwu started on December 11, 2023 as our Community Manager and Sandra Gesing started on November 1, 2023 as our Executive Director.
- Three main activities and initiatives will be funded through the grant: The US-RSE Annual Conference, a Community Funds Program, and an Awards Program.
- Developing and maintaining a vibrant and functional community network requires infrastructure. To alleviate the struggles of the current process, we’ll invest in infrastructure for managing contact information for those in the network, facilitating networking opportunities between members, allowing people to choose their level of involvement in network activities, and communicating with members.
Community and Travel Funds program: Joint Mathematics Meetings 2024
Local RSEs met in early January for the “Reception for Mathematics Software Developers” at the American Mathematical Society’s Joint Mathematics Meetings in San Francisco! The reception was made possible through our Community and Travel Funds program.
Part of the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation grant for US-RSE has been delegated for the Community and Travel Funds program. Members of US-RSE can apply for funds for community or individual purposes for event costs, get-togethers, travel funding, and more. Visit the webpage above for more details.
US-RSE Conference 2024 (USRSE’24)
US-RSE’24 Conference Update: Dates and Venue Announcement
We have some exciting news to share. The official dates and venue for US-RSE’24 have been announced! Our next conference will be Tuesday, October 15 through Thursday, October 17th, at the Albuquerque Convention Center in Albuquerque, NM. View the US-RSE conference website for more details and to stay up to date on upcoming events!
Call for Technical Program Committee volunteers!
The technical program committee, co-chaired by Joshua Teves and Daniel S. Katz, is seeking co-chairs for the following technical tracks:
- Birds of a Feather
Co-chairs will be responsible for:
- Providing feedback on the content of the technical program and communications about its contents,
- Organizing and managing reviewers for their track, and
- Making accept/reject/maybe categorizations of submissions.
Please complete the Technical Track Co-Chair Volunteer Form to submit your name and the subcommittees you are interested in co-chairing!
Steering Committee Elections
The steering committee elections took place in December. Julia Damerow, Rinku Gupta, Kenton McHenry and Miranda Mundt will continue to serve for another year. The other five seats were open for selection. The following candidates have been successfully elected:
- Abbey Roelofs
- Alex Koufos
- Ian Cosden
- Jeff Carver
- Keith Beattie
Thanks to the other excellent candidates David Beck, Mahmood Shad, and Torin White for making the election a success. All of them have helped to grow US-RSE and make it successful.
In addition, we want to express our gratitude to the three outgoing Steering Committee members, Nicole Brewer, Christina Maimone, and Sandra Gesing. Their decades of experience have been instrumental in advancing US-RSE, fostering connections within the broader research software community, and positioning US-RSE for a promising future.
US-RSE Funders Talk Series: Ashley Sands
US-RSE is happy to be continuing its series of conversations with funders for 1) RSEs to learn about funding opportunities and review and other processes, 2) RSEs to ask questions of the funder, and 3) funders to ask questions and learn about RSEs.
This talk in the US-RSE Funder Talk Series will feature Ashley Sands, Senior Library Program Officer in the Institute of Museum and Library Services, a federal funding agency that supports work in and affecting the museum and library communities, presenting “Research Software, Libraries, and Funding Opportunities”.
This event will take place Monday, January 29th at 3 PM ET, 2 PM CT, 1 PM MT, 12 PM PT
Please join us in this interactive conversation. (If you can’t participate in the interactive event, where you will be able to ask questions and help funders understand US-RSE, it will also be recorded.)
We are seeking content for a new section of the newsletter that will highlight both newer and seasoned members throughout the year. Please send Sophia Anyatonwu, US-RSE Community Manager, a summary (through Slack or email firstname.lastname@example.org) related to one of these topics:
- What you are currently working on/contributing to in the US-RSE community
- What you are actively planning on participating in this year as a member of US-RSE
- Past projects/work you have participated in through US-RSE that you are proud of
- Resources from the US-RSE community that you are starting to apply (or have already applied) professionally or personally
- A summary of how you landed a job through US-RSE’s job board and who was involved, or a similar item about how you helped someone else land an interview or job, perhaps in collaboration with that person
We are working on creating a set of US-RSE Member Snapshots for social media. Please send Sophia Anyatonwu, US-RSE Community Manager, summary text and a picture through Slack or email email@example.com.
RSE Group Leaders’ Network (RSE-GLN)
Do you lead an RSE group? Do you want to talk to others about the challenges of leading and managing projects, people, and resources? Join the RSE-GLN!
Celebrating Black History Month
US-RSE’s DEI working group (DEI-WG) is planning to celebrate Black History Month by sharing a series of stories that recognize and celebrate inspirational African Americans who have been involved in computing, science, engineering, and/or math. We are asking for help in writing these stories (see our Pride month celebration posts for examples). If you can help, please contact us on the #wg-diversity-equity-inclusion channel or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org. We have compiled a short list of inspirational figures to consider, please feel free to add anyone you feel is deserving of a highlight.
We’d also love your input and assistance for future events.
DEI Media Club - Next event will be March 21
Join us for our next DEI Media Club discussion (Thursday, March 21st, at 12pm ET/11am CST/10am MT/9am PT). Ping us on Slack (@wg-dei), email (email@example.com), or through our general DEI feedback form.
User Experience Working Group
The User Experience Working Group (UXWG) invites US-RSE members to join for its February meeting, Getting to Know Each Other’s Work: Show & Tell. This meeting will be on Feb 21st at 4:30 PM EST/3:30 PM CST/1:30 PM PT/2:30 PM MT.
For UXWG Members, this will be an opportunity for the broader community and your fellow working group members to have a window into the kinds of work you do and the problems you encounter. If UXWG members would like to participate in sharing, come prepared to spend five minutes discussing one particular project or activity you are working on (or have worked on in the recent past). You are encouraged to share something visual with the group (website, slide(s), mockups, etc.), but you are welcome to simply discuss your work too. Bloopers and successes are both great to share. This is intended to be an informal space so it’s okay for your time to be unstructured!
For US-RSE members, joining our meeting is a chance to get familiar with the kinds of issues user experience designers and researchers grapple with.
The UXWG strives for regular, productive meetings that accommodate multiple schedules. We meet on the 3rd Tues of odd months at 2 PM ET/1 PM CST/11 AM PT/12 PM MT, and, on even months, the 3rd Wed at 4:30 PM ET/3:30 PM CST/1:30 PM PT/12 PM MT.
Next meeting: Feb 21, 4:30 PM Eastern
Meeting ID: 978 4016 6678
Join us on Slack in the #wg-ux channel.
Code Review Working Group
The goal of this working group is to build a community of RSEs who are interested in code review. The working group will provide a forum to gather resources related to code review, discuss the use of code review in research software project, and seek help in conducting code reviews.
To get involved, visit the #wg-code-review channel on the US-RSE slack.
February Community Call
Call for Presenters
If you are interested in presenting, please get in touch with Julia Damerow and Abbey Roelofs in the #communitycalls channel or by messaging them directly.
January Community Call (Past)
The January Community Call was on the topic of Python Frameworks.
Speakers presented on best practices and experiences they have had with Python Frameworks.
Community Manager Office Hours
One weekday and one weekend time slot will be set aside each month for US-RSE members to chat with Sophia about membership matters. Members may also provide updates on how they are applying technical tools and other resources they have learned about from the US-RSE community. Additional information and relevant resources can be found on the US-RSE Slack in the #community-manager channel.
Interesting Events and Opportunities
Community and Travel Funds Program
Part of the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation grant for US-RSE has been delegated for the Community and Travel Funds program. Members of US-RSE can apply for funds for community or individual purposes for event costs, get-togethers, travel funding, and more. Apply today!
Survey to understand how RSEs consider cybersecurity when writing software
Calling all research software engineers! We’re exploring how security is perceived in our community, and we want to hear from you. Whether you think about security every day or rarely think about security, your insights are invaluable to us. To participate, you will complete a survey that takes 20-30 minutes.
We will ensure your privacy during and after the survey process. The survey is anonymous.
Your participation in this research study is voluntary. If you are interested, after completion of the survey you can enter a drawing for up to three $100 Gift Cards. The entry for the drawing is separate from the survey to ensure your answers remain anonymous. If you decide to participate in this study, you may quit the survey at any time and your partial responses will not be included in the study. However, only those who complete the study are eligible for the drawing.
If you are willing to participate in this study, please click here.
If you have any questions regarding the research study, please contact Matthew Armstrong (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Dr. Jeffrey Carver (email@example.com).
This research has been reviewed according to University of Alabama procedures for research involving human subjects. If you have any questions about your rights as a participant in this study or any concerns or complaints, please contact the University of Alabama Office of Research Compliance at 1-877-820-3066.
Survey to better understand code revew practices of RSEs
Dr. Jeffrey Carver, Dr. Nasir Eisty, and Md Ariful Malik of the University of Alabama are conducting a study to understand the practices, impacts and barriers of code review techniques for RSEs.
As an RSE, we are soliciting your participation in our study. Taking part in this study involves completing a web survey that will take about 15 minutes. This survey contains questions about your previous experience with the code review process.
Your participation is completely anonymous and voluntary. You are free not to participate or stop participating any time before you submit your answers. You must be 18 years of age or older to participate in the study and the survey.
If you are willing to participate in this study, please click here.
If you have any questions regarding the survey, please contact Dr. Jeffrey Carver (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Dr. Nasir Eisty (email@example.com).
This research study has been approved by the University of Alabama Institutional Review Board.
Usage of Codes of Conduct (CoC) in Open Source Communities (OSS)
A team of researchers, led by Dr. Shurui Zhou from the University of Toronto, is partnering with NumFOCUS for a project centered on comprehending the implementation of Codes of Conduct (CoC) in open-source communities. They seek to conduct interviews with open-source practitioners familiar with adjusting and utilizing CoCs to foster a welcoming environment, as well as those experienced in addressing CoC violations. The objective is to gain insights into current CoC usage, identify challenges, and suggest optimal practices. If you are interested and available for an interview, then please sign up here.
Sharing Cancer Research Software? The National Institutes of Health (NIH) Wants to Hear from You!
Are you using and sharing source codes, algorithms, scripts, computational workflows, and other executables in your cancer research? If so, NIH wants to hear from you!
Consider responding to this Request for Information to help NIH develop best practices for sharing research software. Send your response(s) before 12:00 a.m., ET, on February 1, 2024.
2024 Improving Scientific Software Conference
The 2024 Improving Scientific Software Conference will be held during the week of April 15-19, 2024 in Boulder, Colorado. A virtual registration option is also available for those interested in remote attendance.
This year’s conference will focus on the modernization of scientific software.
Sustainable Scientific Software Conference
The Sustainable Scientific Software Conference will take place April 8-11 in Seattle, WA. This conference will help connect individuals and teams from the High Performance Computing (HPC) community that are working to deliver scientific software solutions in a sustainable manner. Sustainable software delivery spans the spectrum of software engineering, from design and development to DevOps, and software deployment platforms, from laptops to HPC systems.
The 23nd annual SciPy conference will be held July 8-14 in Tacoma, WA at the Tacoma Convention Center.
SciPy brings together attendees from industry, academia and government to showcase their latest projects, learn from skilled users and developers, and collaborate on code development.
Virtual Conference Passes are available.
JuliaCon 2024 will be held July 9-13 at Philips Stadion, Eindhoven in the Netherlands. Join the largest annual conference organized around the Julia programming language.
Interesting Reads, Videos, or Podcasts
- Software and skills for research computing in the UK by Michelle Barker, Elena Breitmoser, Philippa Broadbent, Neil Chue Hong, Simon Hettrick, Ioanna Lampaki, Anthony Quinn, and Rebecca Taylor
- Make-or-buy decisions in research and research software by Daniel S. Katz
- Code for Thought: Patterns in Science And Medicine - Veronika Cheplygina by Peter Schmidt
- Code for Thought: Net Zero and Computing? Part I: Wim Vanderbauwhede and John Wernvik by Peter Schmidt
- Beyond Self-Promotion: How Software Engineering Research Is Discussed on LinkedIn by Marvin Wyrich and Justus Bogner
Items you may have missed on the blog and Slack in December:
- Metrics for automated FAIR software assessment in a disciplinary context by Neil Chue Hong et al. defines 17 metrics that can be used to automate the assessment of research software against the FAIR4RS Principles, and provides examples of how these might be implemented in one exemplar disciplinary context of the social sciences.
- US-RSE and the IEEE Computer Society have published Research Software Engineers: Creating a Career Path—and a Career, which describes the RSE career and provides a guide to needed skills and how they can be learned and practised, as well as how to engage with other RSEs. It also discusses some of the reasons one might choose to become an RSE.
- The Next Generation of RSEs by Emma Simpson
- Diversity and inclusion in research software: Insights from an international workshop by Eric A. Jensen and Daniel S. Katz
- What we learned about research software careers from a recent international workshop by Eric A. Jensen and Daniel S. Katz
- Code for Thought podcast: Being a Research Software Engineer in France - Ghislain Vaillant by Peter Schmidt
- Code for Thought podcast: Culture of Women in Tech (Diversity in Tech, Part 2) - Mariann Hardey by Peter Schmidt
- Code for Thought podcast: ByteSized RSE: Web Development with Django by Peter Schmidt
The Outreach Working Group is actively recruiting new co-chairs to take over its leadership! Volunteers are also needed to help with organizing workshops, birds of a feather (BoF), symposiums, etc. Roles span from organizer to reviewer to speaker and more. Here are some key projects that recent co-chairs, Miranda Mundt and Josh Teves, have led to benefit the overall US-RSE community:
- Strategically planning and delivering the first-ever US-RSE conference in 2023
- Organizing the submission of collaborative proposals to relevant conferences
- Providing awesome SWAG to members
- Assisting the overall US-RSE community with delineating between membership, communications, and outreach efforts
From a financial perspective, 2023 was an exciting year for US-RSE. We were awarded a two-year grant from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation and switched fiscal sponsors. We are very grateful to the Open Collective Foundation (OCF) that was our fiscal sponsor until last spring. However, with the awarded grant our needs changed and we are now a fiscally sponsored project of Community Initiatives (CI). CI gives us the structure and resources to hire staff such as the Executive Director and the Community Manager, accept donations and reimburse members for expenses they incurred on behalf of US-RSE. The community funds possible via the Alfred P. Sloan grant are also awarded via CI.
The majority of the grant from the Sloan Foundation is budgeted to pay for our new Executive Director and Community Manager. Besides that we’ve budgeted money to support staff travel, the US-RSE conference, fund community activities through our new Community and Travel Fund program, and fund smaller items such as code of conduct trainings for our code of conduct committee members. CI charges 10% of our income for providing resources, infrastructure, and support (trust us when we say we make good use of those resources). Switching from OCF to CI turned out to been an unexpectedly complex change and it has been a very steep learning curve. We appreciate our members’ patience as we navigate the world of non-profit regulations and guidelines.
There are lots of ways to get involved with the US-RSE community. Of course, you can join us on Slack. 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, Community Engagement, Fundraising, and Newsletter are all needed and welcome.
As always we thank everyone who is already contributing for their help in shaping and growing the organization.
- Code Review
- Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion
- Education & Training
- Group Management
- Mentorship Program
- RSE Empowerment in National Labs
- User Experience
Recent Job Postings
These opportunities were recently posted to the RSE Opportunities page:
- Software Scientist: Open Free Energy/Open Molecular Software Foundation, fully remote Posted: Jan 24, 2024
- Professional Services Engineer: University of Chicago (Globus), Hybrid - in person meetings attendance required Posted: Jan 22, 2024
- Postdoc - Syracuse University Open Source Project Office: Syracuse University, Syracuse, NY Posted: Jan 09, 2024
- Software Engineer, Humanities Research Computing: Harvard University, Remote eligible from a Harvard-registered payroll state (MA, CT, ME, NH, RI, VT, GA, IL, MD, NJ, NY, VA, WA, CA) Posted: Jan 09, 2024
- Software Developer, Open Source Program Office: The George Washington University, Washington, DC Posted: Jan 09, 2024
- Research Software Engineer level III or IV: University of Florida, Gainesville, FL Posted: Jan 05, 2024
- Research Software Engineer level I or II: University of Florida, Gainesville, FL Posted: Jan 05, 2024
- Scientific Python Programmer (Astronomy): Space Telescope Science Institute, Baltimore, MD, USA (must live within or relocate to MD or a surrounding state) Posted: Dec 23, 2023
- Senior Research Cloud Computing Architect and Engineer: Salk Institute for Biological Studies, La Jolla, California Posted: Dec 22, 2023
- Research Cloud Software Engineer: Salk Institute for Biological Studies, La Jolla, California Posted: Dec 22, 2023
- Software Engineer/Developer: Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA (on-site) Posted: Dec 19, 2023
- Research Software Engineer II (Language and Intelligence): Princeton University, Princeton, NJ Posted: Dec 14, 2023
- ML Research Scientist: Kempner Institute, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA Posted: Dec 07, 2023
- Computational Astrophysics Postdoctoral Researcher: Los Alamos National Laboratory, Los Alamos, NM Posted: Dec 06, 2023
- Full Stack Developer: Institute for Genomic Medicine, Nationwide Children’s Hospital, Columbus, Ohio Posted: Dec 05, 2023
- Programmer II: Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, Philadelphia, PA Posted: Dec 05, 2023
- OSTP Software Developer: Kitware, Clifton Park, NY Posted: Nov 30, 2023
- Associate Research Scientist / Research Scientist - Software: Flatiron Institute, Center for Computational Neuroscience, New York, NY Posted: Nov 17, 2023
- Performance Tuning Analyst: Princeton University, Princeton, NJ (in-person, not remote) Posted: Nov 14, 2023
- Lead Neuroimaging Software Developer: Boys Town, Omaha, NE Posted: Sep 25, 2023
- Researcher and Engineer Positions in Advanced Wireless, Open RAN, and Rural Broadband: Iowa State University, Ames, Iowa Posted: May 18, 2023
- Scientific Applications Engineer: Ohio Supercomputer Center, Columbus, OH (hybrid possible) Posted: Jan 09, 2024
- Research Computing Facilitator: University of Massachusetts Dartmouth, Dartmouth, MA Posted: Dec 06, 2023
- Summer 2024 research experience for undergraduates (REU) in open source machine learning models and tools: NCSA, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, IL Posted: Jan 05, 2024
- 2024 Anvil Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU): Purdue University, West Lafayette, Indiana Posted: Jan 04, 2024
- SGX3 Internship: Texas Advanced Computing Center, Center of Excellence for Science Gateways (SGX3), Austin, Texas Posted: Dec 13, 2023
- Summer Research Intern: Center for Computational Neuroscience, Flatiron Institute, New York, NY Posted: Dec 07, 2023
- 2024 Summer Internships in Parallel Computational Science: National Center for Atmospheric Research, Boulder, CO Posted: Nov 10, 2023
Other Job Boards
The following boards might also be of interest.
- Software Carpentries Job Opportunities
- Academic Data Science Alliance Jobs
- Society of Research Software Engineering Vacancies
Have an RSE-related job posting?
This newsletter is a joint effort of members of the US-RSE Association.