Software Developer

Job Location
Wellcome Genome Campus
CB10 1SD
United Kingdom

EMBL is an inclusive, equal opportunity employer offering attractive conditions and benefits appropriate to an international research organisation. The remuneration package comprises a competitive salary, a comprehensive pension and health insurance, educational and other family related benefits where applicable, as well as financial support for relocation and installation.

We provide a dynamic, international working environment and have close ties with the University of Cambridge and the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute.

EMBL-EBI staff also enjoy excellent sports facilities, a free shuttle bus to Cambridge and other nearby centres, an active sports and social club and an attractive working environment set in 55 acres of parkland.

Job Description

We are seeking an experienced software developer to develop a new system for the capture of complex experimental data from model organism genetics research. You will join the Non-vertebrate Genomics team at the European Bioinformatics Institute (EMBL-EBI), located on the Wellcome Genome Campus near Cambridge in the UK, working on the WormBase project.

You will work on a new modern and scalable back-end database and associated software for WormBase ( project. The system will be developed for, and applied to, the curation, organisation and dissemination of the complex interconnected data from the vast body of literature on the genetics, genomics and biology of the model nematode Caenorhabditis elegans. However, our aim is that it should be sufficiently general to act as a unifying framework for all model organism database projects.

The role involves the development of the following:
- A graph-based data model for the representation of data from model organism genetics and genomics research;
- Implementation of the data model using the modern NoSQL database Datomic (;
- Software for converting existing model organism data (initially from WormBase) into the new database;
- APIs for interacting with the database programmatically;
- Tools to allow curators to interact with the database from a web-browser.

WormBase is an international consortium comprising groups at EMBL-EBI, the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute, the California Institute of Technology and the Ontario Institute for Cancer Research, and you will work closely with developers and curators at all four sites. The WormBase team at EMBL-EBI are part of a wider genomics group that produces Ensembl and Ensembl Genomes (, and participates in numerous global collaborative genomics projects (e.g. VectorBase, PomBase). You will work in an environment that has a proven track-record of producing world-leading infrastructure and tools for the management of biological data.

The EBI is part of the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL) and it is a world-leading bioinformatics centre providing biological data to the scientific community with expertise in data storage, analysis and representation. EMBL-EBI provides freely available data from life science experiments, performs basic research in computational biology and offers an extensive user training programme, supporting researchers in academic and industry. We are part of EMBL, Europe’s flagship laboratory for the life sciences.


- A degree-level qualification in computer science, bioinformatics or the biological sciences.
- At least two years software development experience.
- Extensive experience developing database applications
- Proficiency in at least two programming languages (e.g. Java, Python)
- Practical experience in at least one NoSQL database technology (e.g. MongoDB, Neo4j)
- Excellent communication skills

- Experience with RDF and the semantic web
- Experience with Datomic (
- Experience with functional programming languages, such as Clojure or Scala

- Development of web-applications in JavaScript

About Our Organization

We welcome applications irrespective of gender and appointment will be based on merit alone. Applications are welcome from all nationalities - visa information will be discussed in more depth with applicants selected for interview.

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