Computational Staff Scientist/Computational Senior Staff Scientist

Computational Staff Scientist/Computational Senior Staff Scientist

Computational Staff Scientist/Computational Senior Staff Scientist

The Opportunity:

The Lawniczak lab is seeking a highly motivated researcher with excellent computational and quantitative skills to fill a Computational Staff Scientist or Senior Staff Scientist position (depending on experience). Our group is part of the both the Tree of Life Programme and the Parasites and Microbes Programme at the Wellcome Sanger Institute. We strive to do science and build genomic resources that deliver impact in important global problems like malaria and the rapid loss of biodiversity while also enhancing our understanding of evolution and genome biology. 

About Us:

This position offers the opportunity to work at one of the world’s leading genomic centres at the forefront of genomic research. You will have access to Sanger's computational resources, including a 20000+ core computational cluster, the largest in life science research in Europe, and multiple petabytes of high-speed cluster file systems. Our group has a vibrant wet-lab and access to core facilities, where we generate our own data with the help of dedicated staff. This provides an exciting opportunity for you to not only analyse the data, but to be actively involved in the planning and execution of large-scale experiments and projects.

 The Role:

The role combines the opportunity to lead cutting edge science while also mentoring trainees and taking custodianship of the quantitative half of the lab. Our work ranges from single cell RNA sequencing data analysis of tens of thousands of individual malaria parasites to population genomic studies of tens of thousands of mosquitoes to building, analysing, and using high quality genome assemblies across the entire tree of life. In each of these areas we aim to innovate, developing excellent visual and analytical explorations of data for ourselves and the wider community as well as applying the best available existing tools for the questions at hand (and doing the evaluations to determine which those might be). You will also be responsible for contributing to the team strategy.

There are two role profiles above to appeal to a wide range of applicants from the more junior to the more senior. Only one appointment will be made (please see attached role profiles for further details).

 About You:

The ideal candidate will have a wide-ranging skillset including conceiving of computational approaches that enhance our interpretation of the genomic data we generate, leading analyses and also training others to do so, and writing, publishing, and presenting results. Another primary part of the role is to offer general computational support for the team and the resources we generate, including onboarding new members, helping to build and maintain a shared code base in collaboration with the core informatics support teams that exist in both the Tree of Life and the Parasites and Microbes programmes, keeping our interactive data resource websites up to date and user-friendly, and taking responsibility for team code repositories and data organisation. 

We value diversity and we welcome applications from anyone regardless of their gender, age, race, sexual orientation, religion, disability, nationality, maternity status, or their requirement for part time or flexible working hours due to childcare or other commitments.



Salary per annum
Full Time or Part Time
Full Time
Contract Type
Job Reference

Essential Skills

- PhD in statistics, bioinformatics, computational biology, genomics, population genetics, or other relevant area of quantitative analysis - or – equivalent experience

- Good programming skills, preferably Python for scripting, data analysis, pipeline and tool development.

- Good data visualization skills, preferably advanced knowledge of ggplot or similar

- Experience in Unix/Linux operating system  

- Experience with using compute cluster and batch queuing systems

- Experience with software version control systems

- Experience with managing and processing next-generation sequencing data

- Experience with pipelining/workflow engines and languages 

- Problem-solving skills and the ability to rapidly learn new skills

- Good experience in writing research manuscripts and reports

- Experience of working collaboratively with a range of internal and external stakeholders


Additional Essential Skills For Computational Senior Staff Scientist:

- Extensive experience in a relevant computational field/industry.

- Excellent data visualization skills including advanced knowledge of ggplot or similar

- Highly Developed Problem-Solving skills and the ability to rapidly learn new skills

- Proficiency in Unix/Linux operating system  

- Proficient in writing research manuscripts and reports

Other information

Please apply with your CV and cover letter outlining your suitability for the role.

 Closing Date: 27th July 2020

Whilst the developments around COVID-19 continue to evolve, the Wellcome Genome Campus is closed for all but essential functions and facilities. 

People remain at the centre of everything that we do and the majority of our staff are now working remotely to ensure continuity of operations, making use of remote communication and collaboration tools.

Interviews will be taking place virtually and the successful candidate should expect to be fully supported through remote on-boarding and working from home until the Campus re-opens to all staff. This approach may vary for individuals located overseas and/or where a visa is required and starting will be based on a number of factors, we will be able to provide specialist advice to those affected candidates.


About Us

The Wellcome Sanger Institute is a world leading genomics research centre. We undertake large-scale research that forms the foundations of knowledge in biology and medicine. Our findings are used to improve health and to understand life on Earth. Find out more at or follow us on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Youtube and on our Blog


Our benefits:
There’s an attractive benefits package on offer at the Wellcome Genome Campus. We appreciate the importance of achieving work-life balance and support this with a number of family and carer-friendly policies. Plus a flexible working policy for those who may wish to amend their working pattern or arrangement.
As well as the usual benefits you would expect, we go much further:

  • 25 days annual leave (extra 1 day to a maximum of 30 days for every year you work)
  • Auto-enrolment into a generous Group Defined Contribution Pension Scheme, with enhanced company contribution (for more information, see our Pensions page)
  • Up to 2 days annual paid volunteering leave
  • Up to 10 days paid Emergency Carers Leave per year
  • Family friendly environment including options for flexible and part-time working, an on-site Workplace Nursery salary Sacrifice Schemes for pre-school children and Summer holiday club
  • Life Assurance Cover and a Group Income Protection Scheme (if on a contract of 12 months or more)
  • Enhanced maternity leave and parental leave
  • Access to substantial number of courses and training events onsite
  • Private Healthcare Scheme (after 6 months service)
  • Eyecare and Dental payment plans
  • Concessions and discounts from our corporate perks site

Being part of the Wellcome Genome Campus you will be part of the beautiful working environment with an impressive range of benefits, services and facilities also including:

  • Free bus service to and from Campus, covering various routes around Cambridge, Saffron Walden and surrounding villages
  • A car-share initiative
  • Free parking
  • A number of on-site venues where you can meet, eat and socialise with colleagues
  • A thriving Sports and Social Club which provides members with subsidised access to a gym, tennis courts, sports hall, fitness classes and a vibrant social calendar of events

Find out more about our Wellcome Genome Campus.

We have recently been awarded an Athena SWAN Silver Award. We will consider all individuals without discrimination and are committed to creating an inclusive environment for all employees, where everyone can thrive.