Information scientist
Location:EMBL-EBI Hinxton near Cambridge, UK
Staff Category:Staff Member
Contract Duration:until 30th November 2020
Grading:5 (monthly salary starting at £2,552 after tax). For more information about pay and benefits click here
Closing Date:20th March
Reference Number:EBI_01153

Job Description

We are seeking to recruit an information scientist to work on the FREYA project within the Literature Services Team at the European Bioinformatics Institute (EMBL-EBI) located on the Wellcome Trust Genome Campus near Cambridge in the UK.

The FREYA project is funded by the European Commission and is an international collaboration that includes the partners: STFC, CERN, the British Library, ORCID, DataCite, CrossRef, PANGAEA, DANS, the Australian National Data Service, and PLoS. The goal of the project is to develop infrastructure around persistent identifiers (PIDs), in order to better connect components of the research ecosystem. Mature PID services, such as ORCIDs, data accession numbers (in the life sciences) or DOIs will need to be integration with emerging identifier systems such as identifiers for organizations, scientific equipment, or software.

The successful candidate will be responsible for coordinating the EMBL-EBI’s part in the FREYA project focusing on research into the state-of-the-art of persistent identifiers (PIDs). Working with other FREYA partners and colleagues at the EMBL-EBI, you will undertake analysis to gather data and requirements on potential new PID types, use cases and services. Understanding the current usage of PIDs, the landscape of mature services around PIDs, and identifying gaps will be a key part of the role. You will lead EMBL-EBI’s efforts to prototype new PID services and experiment with their adoption.

Specific job responsibilities include:

  • Investigate future requirements of persistent identifiers in the life sciences and (with other FREYA partners) in other disciplines;
  • Contribute use cases for new persistent identifier types from the life sciences;
  • Prototype services or the adoption/integration of new identifiers;
  • Participation in FREYA project outreach activities, such as organizing community workshops;
  • Point-of-contact for EMBL-EBI within the FREYA project, attending project meetings, writing reports, as required;
  • Trends analysis (for example, trends in persistent identifier uptake in the life sciences).

At EMBL-EBI, we help scientists realise the potential of ‘big data’ in biology by enabling them to exploit complex information to make discoveries that benefit mankind. Working for EMBL-EBI gives you an opportunity to apply your skills and energy for the greater good. As part of the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL), we are a non-profit, intergovernmental organisation funded by 24 member states and two associate member states and proud to be an equal-opportunity employer. We are located on the Wellcome Genome Campus near Cambridge in the UK, and our 600 staff are engineers, technicians, scientists and other professionals from all over the world.

Qualifications and Experience

The successful candidate should demonstrate as many of the following as possible:

  • Advanced degree e.g. MSc/MA or PhD in information science, bioinformatics, or similar
  • Three years of professional experience from within either bioinformatics research, the journal publishing industry, information/library science, or similar
  • Technical/analytical ability, for example, experience of one or more of: Perl, Java, XML technologies, R, Python complex query development;
  • Experience in coordinating, leading, or organizing projects;
  • Excellent and demonstrable written and verbal communication skills
  • A passion for open science


EMBL is an inclusive, equal opportunity employer offering attractive conditions and benefits appropriate to an international research organisation.

We have an informal culture, international working environment and excellent professional development opportunities but one of the really amazing things about us is the concentration of technical and scientific expertise – something you probably won’t find anywhere else.

If you’ve ever visited the campus you’ll have experienced first-hand our friendly, collegial and supportive atmosphere, set in the beautiful Cambridgeshire countryside. Our staff also enjoy excellent sports facilities including a gym, a free shuttle bus, an on-site nursery, cafés and restaurant and a library.

Application Instructions

To apply please submit a covering letter and CV, with two referees, through our online system.

Additional Information

Applications are welcome from all nationalities - visa information will be discussed in more depth with applicants selected for interview.

EMBL-EBI is committed to achieving gender balance and strongly encourages applications from women, who are currently under-represented at all levels. Appointment will be based on merit alone.

This position is limited to the project duration specified.

Applications will close at 23:00 GMT on the date listed above.