Job:Ensembl Plants Senior Bioinformatician
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5 weeks ago
Ben_Ensembl ★ 2.4k

Location: EMBL-EBI, Hinxton near Cambridge, UK

Contract Duration: 2 years (Project based contract)

Grading: Grade 6 (Monthly salary starting at £3,456 after tax) + Other paid benefits and allowances based on circumstances

Closing Date: 19 May 2024

Reference Number: EBI02237

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Ensembl Plants is looking for an experienced bioinformatician to join our team, bringing integrated plant genomic data to user communities worldwide. You will be based at EMBL-EBI and work alongside fellow bioinformaticians, programmers and scientists to develop novel genomic resources. You will also be responsible for running genomic analyses as part of our regular release cycles and collaborate with researchers around the world.

As part of the Ensembl project, Ensembl Plants ( provides access to annotated genomes, genetic variation data and comparative genomics views to support research and breeding activities for a wide range of plant species, including agronomically important crop species and model plants. The Ensembl project is a collaborative effort with several teams working together to develop datasets and tools which support genomics-based research across the taxonomic space. We are also active partners in international initiatives to support the development of standards and tools to assist in the collection, integration and dissemination of plant genomic data. Genomics has enormous potential to advance plant science and in turn help ensure the global security of food supplies. If successful, you will be a part of this effort.

Working relationships

  • Reports to: Metazoa and Plants Project Leader
  • Collaborates with (internal): Other members of the Ensembl Metazoa and Plants team; other developers in the Genome Assembly and Annotation Section
  • Collaborates with (external): Community members to support integration of their data, international partners on collaborative projects.
  • External customers: users of the Ensembl Plants platform

Your role

As a senior bioinformatician in the Ensembl Plants team you will:

  • Coordinate production activities and delivery of processed data as part of the Ensembl release cycle
  • Maintain and develop our databases, pipelines and documentation
  • Develop software solutions to increase automation, reliability and scalability of our data processing pipelines and workflows
  • Assist the Metazoa and Plants Project Leader in making technical decisions for the project
  • Provide technical leadership and mentor less-experienced team members
  • Contribute to developing and emerging data standards, particularly in the area of pan-genomes
  • Represent EMBL-EBI and interact with collaborators, researchers, data generators and user communities

You have

  • A post-graduate degree in bioinformatics, biology, computer science or a related field or equivalent professional experience
  • At least four years’ experience working in a production bioinformatics environment
  • A high degree of proficiency in at least one dynamic programming language e.g. Python or Perl
  • Experience with Unix/Linux
  • Experience delivering projects or analyses with multiple components
  • Practical experience working with relational Database platforms (e.g. MySQL, Postgres)
  • The ability to understand, write and maintain complex code
  • Experience working with genome analysis tools
  • Excellent English communication skills; written and verbal, both to facilitate effective internal communications as well as with external collaborators and users
  • Excellent attention to detail, well-developed problem-solving skills and work well as part of a team
  • The desire to work in an inclusive, international environment

You might also have:

  • Experience with workflow systems (e.g. Nextflow)
  • Experience working with the Ensembl platform
  • Experience in professional software development as part of a collaborative team
  • Experience of working in plant genomics
  • Experience in project management
  • Experience working in a cluster compute environment

Why join us:

Do something meaningful:

At EMBL-EBI you can apply your talent and passion to accelerate science and tackle some of humankind's greatest challenges. EMBL-EBI, part of the European Molecular Biology Laboratory, is a worldwide leader in the storage, analysis and dissemination of large biological datasets. We provide the global research community with access to publicly available databases and tools which are crucial for the advancement of healthcare, food security, and biodiversity.

Join a culture of innovation:

We are located on the Wellcome Genome Campus, alongside other prominent research and biotech organisations, and surrounded by beautiful Cambridgeshire countryside. This is a highly collaborative and inclusive community where our employees enjoy a relaxed atmosphere. We are committed to ensuring our employees feel valued, supported and empowered to reach their professional potential.

Enjoy lots of benefits:

  • Financial incentives: Monthly family, child and non-resident allowances, annual salary review, pension scheme, death benefit, long-term care, accident-at-work and unemployment insurances
  • Flexible working arrangements
  • Private medical insurance for you and your immediate family (including all prescriptions and generous dental & optical cover)
  • Generous time off: 30 days annual leave per year, in addition to eight bank holidays Relocation package including installation grant (if required)
  • Campus life: Free shuttle bus to and from work, on-site library, subsidised on-site gym and cafeteria, casual dress code, extensive sports and social club activities (on campus and remotely)
  • Family benefits: On-site nursery, 10 days of child sick leave, generous parental leave, holiday clubs on campus and monthly family and child allowances
  • Benefits for non-UK residents: Visa exemption, education grant for private schooling, financial support to travel back to your home country every second year and a monthly non-resident allowance.

For more details please see our employee benefits page.

Working at EMBL-EBI Join our diverse team and help power the next generation of discoveries in the life sciences.

What else you need to know

  • Contract duration: This position is a 2 year project based contract which expects to be renewed
  • International applicants: We recruit internationally and successful candidates are offered visa exemptions. Read more on our page for international applicants.
  • Diversity and inclusion: At EMBL-EBI, we strongly believe that inclusive and diverse teams benefit from higher levels of innovation and creative thought. We encourage applications from women, LGBTQ+ and individuals from all nationalities.
  • EMBL is a signatory of DORA. Find out how we implement best practices in research assessment in our recruitment processes here.
  • Job location: This role is based in Hinxton, near Cambridge, UK. You will be required to relocate if you are based overseas and you will receive a generous relocation package to support you.
  • How to apply: To apply please submit a cover letter and a CV through our online system.

Apply Now

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