Computational Biologist

Harvard School of Public Health
United States, Boston
Mar 2012
This job posting expired on May 18, 2012.


The HSPH Center for Health Bioinformatics (CHB) is a center for bioinformatic research, services and training at the Harvard School of Public Health. Integral to the HSPH and Harvard Stem Cell Institute, our multi-disciplinary team works with researchers across the Harvard, MIT and Broad biomedical community, providing a comprehensive portfolio of infrastructure, data analysis, training and development. We seek an experienced computational biologist to become an integral component of the center.
This is a unique opportunity to participate in world-class research that aims to make an impact on human health. As part of the CHB you will be working directly with researchers on projects ranging from blood stem cell epigenetics to clinical grade sequencing of patient genomes to HIV resistance studies.

You have a background in biomedical or quantitative science and a strong interest in working with researchers in public health. You thrive on scientific challenges, enjoy collaborating with an interdisciplinary team and excel at communicating and coordinating between programmers and wet-lab scientists alike. Learning and applying new methods is natural for you, and you are motivated to continuously expand your skills. You have a good handle on your data and project management skills. You have experience working on shared development projects, preferably open source, demonstrated by publicly available source code or other web presence. Working on different projects and deadlines, frequently in collaboration with other Cores and research groups, doesn’t intimidate you. You enjoy teaching and organizing workshops to train other researchers in newly developed methods and workflows.

You will support researchers in the Harvard community with their data management, quality control, analysis of data and presentation of results. Projects are usually a mix of short-term support tasks and long-term collaborations; most support tasks and methods should eventually transition into standardized workflows. You will need broad experience in several bioinformatics domains such as microarray analysis (expression, methylation), sequencing (RNA-seq, ChIP-seq, genome assembly, exome/WGS sequencing) or functional analysis and implement your analysis in reproducible workflows (Galaxy or other systems). You will be expected to coordinate selected research or support projects and provide training in methods developed by the CHB team. Currently active projects include the deployment of a ChIP-seq workflow (collaboration with the Park lab), support for shRNA screens in complex diseases (with Gokhan Hotamisligil’s group) and integrative analysis of HIV-1 pathogenesis data (with Xu Yu at the Ragon Institute).


  • Master’s degree or PhD in biological sciences, statistics or related computational field required, and at least three years experience beyond Master’s
  • Evidence of working directly with wet laboratories to perform analyses
  • Proven ability to interpret and analyze large data sets and present results synthetically
  • Demonstrated programming experience in shared development projects
  • Working knowledge of biology, genetics and cell biology
  • Excellent written English and a familiarity with presenting biological results
  • Strong interpersonal skills


  • Experience with R/BioC, GenePattern, Galaxy or similar environments
  • Working knowledge of HPCC systems
  • Familiarity with best practices in different sequencing workflows
  • Competency in statistics
  • Demonstrated experience in teaching and outreach

Start Date: ASAP
Duration: Full Time

Harvard School of Public Health
Center for Health Bioinformatics
Oliver Hofmann -
Tel. Number: +1 617-365-0984