Wellcome Sanger Institute

Senior Bioinformatics Data Scientist

Job description

Do you want to help us improve human health and understand life on Earth? Make your mark by shaping the future to enable or deliver life-changing science to solve some of humanity’s greatest challenges.

We are looking for a Senior Bioinformatics Data Scientist to help deliver high-quality data analysis and resources for the genomic surveillance of pathogens and associated vectors at the Wellcome Sanger Institute. Internally this role is known as a Senior Bioinformatician.

Background and context

A major challenge in the battle against infectious disease is that pathogens are continually evolving. Genomic surveillance involves sequencing the genetic material of pathogenic microbes and their vectors so that evolutionary changes that affect transmission, disease severity and susceptibility to treatment can be monitored. The goal of the Welcome Sanger Institute’s Genomic Surveillance Unit (GSU) is to enable and support partners around the world using genomic surveillance as a practical tool for local infectious disease control and pandemic preparedness.

About The Role

As a Senior Bioinformatics Data Scientist in the GSU, you will join a team engaged in generating, processing, analysing and interpreting genomic surveillance data at scale, to enable and support public-health decision-making. We work across a growing number of disease areas (including COVID-19 and Malaria), and are part of the Sanger Institute’s new Respiratory Virus and Microbiome Initiative (RVI), which aims to establish large-scale genomic surveillance of respiratory viruses such as influenza and respiratory syncytial virus (RSV). The team’s work encompasses data science, biocuration, software development and pipeline engineering. Your role will include:
  • Exploration and interpretation of surveillance datasets to address questions posed by public health programmes and to drive methodological improvements of our analytical workflows
  • Producing and curating high-quality data resources that are impactful for public health
  • Developing and maintaining robust, high-quality scalable bioinformatics data-processing pipelines and applying them to large genomic datasets to deliver analysis-ready data to partners
  • Continuous improvement of our processes, software, infrastructure, and ways of working.
As a Senior member of the team, you will take a leading role in certain projects and provide guidance and mentorship for more junior team members.

About You

You are a bioinformatician / data scientist with experience analysing and interpreting biological data. You are a seeking a multi-faceted role that includes elements of data science, biocuration, software development and pipeline engineering. You should have experience in the following areas:
  • The application of statistical analysis and visualisation techniques to biological datasets using best-practice tools and techniques, including proficiency in Python and/or R data analysis toolkits and environments (e.g. Jupyter)
  • Large-scale computing using on-premises compute clusters and/or commercial cloud platforms (e.g. AWS).
An ideal candidate might also have experience in the following:
  • Genomics - in particular methods and software for processing and analysing sequencing data
  • Software development best practices, including version control, containers, testing frameworks, and continuous integration;
  • Building data processing and analysis pipelines using workflow management systems, ideally Nextflow
The work of the team is multi-faceted. You may not be highly proficient across all areas at first, but you will be eager to learn and develop in the areas in which you have less experience. You are a detail-oriented problem solver and are motivated by our mission of delivering high-quality data and analysis results to partners. Teamwork and collaboration are essential aspects of this role, and you will be enthusiastic about creating effective and productive working relationships with collaborators both within and outside the organisation.

Salary: £43,500 - £52,000

Closing date: 19/03/2023

Applications will be reviewed on an ongoing basis and the role may close when a successful appointment has been made.

Working At Wellcome Sanger

Our flexible-hybrid working environment is designed to support a healthy work-life balance. This means you can work flexibly with a combination of working from home, and working from our Campus to allow you to focus on being productive and part of the team while enjoying the benefits of working flexibly.

We aim to attract, recruit, retain and develop talent from the widest possible talent pool, thereby gaining insight and access to different markets to generate a greater impact on the world. We have a supportive culture with the following staff networks, LGBTQ+, Parents and Carers and Race Equity to bring people together to share experiences, offer specific support and development opportunities and raise awareness. The networks are also a place for allies to provide support to others.

We want our people to be whoever they want to be because we believe people who bring their best selves to work, do their best work. That’s why we’re committed to creating a truly inclusive culture at Sanger Institute. We will consider all individuals without discrimination and are committed to creating an inclusive environment for all employees, where everyone can thrive.

Our Benefits

We are proud to deliver an awarding campus-wide employee wellbeing strategy and programme. The importance of good health and adopting a healthier lifestyle and the commitment to reduce work-related stress is strongly acknowledged and recognised at Sanger Institute.

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