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Software and Web Developer
Harvard University in Boston, Massachusetts
Date Posted May 18, 2022
Employment Type
Application Deadline Open until filled


Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health


Position Description

At the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, we advance health science through research, education, and practice in statistical and computational methods and applications. Dr. Xihong Lin's group develops and applies scalable statistical and computational resources and methods for analyzing massive genome, exposome and phenome data, such as Whole Genome Sequencing studies, genome-wide omics studies, biobanks and electronic medical records. We are involved in large-scale NIH-funded national genetic and genomic studies of human diseases and collaborate with leading scientists in many institutions. We are developing approaches and resources that can be scaled and used for massive high-throughput genetic and genomic data to learn about biological underpinnings of complex diseases. We are looking for a Software and Web Developer who will work alongside experts in statistics, computational biology, public health and medicine. To learn more about our group, visit https://content.sph.harvard.edu/xlin/

Under the lead of the PI, the Developer will regularly and collaboratively work with the team's Research Scientist, Postdoctoral Fellows, and PhD students on the ongoing development of a database, website, cloud system, and related software packages which will have an impact on basic science and biomedical research. As a team, we will work together to develop a publicly-available database, online portal and open-source software which can be used to learn about complex diseases, such as cancer, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, sleep apnea, lipids, and biomarkers. The website developer will build a user-friendly interface which supports query and visualization. The Developer may also interact and collaborate with a diverse network of researchers via the sharing of our database and online portal -- including statisticians, computational biologists, genetic epidemiologists, clinicians, and biologists.

Duties include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Full Stack development on a web portal with large data sets (20~30 TB)
  • Work closely with the PI, team to deliver an integrated data management and analysis system to our research community; In collaboration with our team's researchers, the developer will be responsible for developing the database and website to query massive whole genome data
  • Open source software development for conducting integrated genome-wide analyse
  • Extending and improving the existing code base (mostly in R)
  • Using the tools granted by cloud platforms such as Google Cloud and Amazon Web Service
  • Create and maintain documentation of processes, databases and applications
  • Contribute to manuscripts for publication
  • Participate fully in software development life cycle
  • Support technical solutions to deliver business requirements
  • Troubleshoot problems and suggest improvements to coding practices
  • Act as technical liaison to internal clients
  • Abide by and follow the Harvard University IT technical standards, policies and Code of Conduct
  • Other duties as assigned
PLEASE NOTE: Short-listed candidates may be required to submit a work sample (for example, a sample code) as part of the selection process.

PLEASE NOTE: The primary work location for this position is Boston, MA and in order to be on Harvard payroll, you must reside in one of the following states – MA, NH, RI, ME, CT, VT, NY, MD, or CA. We are also working primarily remotely at this time due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Until our return to campus, this interview process and position will be conducted virtually – including virtual interviews, remote onboarding, and remote work. The remote nature of this position is only temporary. Local, on-campus work will be required as a condition of continued employment once the School and this role return to an operational status that supports it. The Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health will support flexible work schedules upon this return, subject to individual departments’ business needs.

Basic Qualifications

  • Minimum of two years’ post-secondary education or relevant work experience

Additional Qualifications and Skills

The following job-specific skills and competencies are preferred:

  • Bachelor degree in computer science strongly preferred
  • Master's degree in a quantitative science or related fields
  • 3+ years of related experience
  • Experience working with big data, prior biological or bioinformatic experience a strong plus, experience with cloud computing
  • Experience with coding languages (such as R or Python), experience with SQL and NoSQL database, and the Unix environment
  • Experience with R, Python, PostgreSQL, Git version control, Bash shell scripting, web languages, Google cloud computing services, Spark big data stack, SLURM
  • Ability to meet deadlines and work cooperatively in a collaborative team
The following cultural competencies are also preferred:
  • Awareness of and aptitude to appropriately and effectively understand, respect, and adapt to cultural and identity-based difference within group environments
  • Knowledge of and commitment to concepts and issues tied to social justice, diversity, equity, and inclusion
  • Skills related to creating and supporting an environment that allows for inclusion, effective intercultural engagement, and personal humility and authenticity

Certificates and Licenses

  • Completion of Harvard IT Academy specified foundational courses (or external equivalent) preferred

Working Conditions

  • Work is performed in an office setting

Additional Information

Harvard University offers an outstanding benefits package including:

  • Time Off: 3-4 weeks paid vacation, paid holiday break, 12 paid sick days, 12+ paid holidays, and 3 paid personal days per year.
  • Medical/Dental/Vision: Excellent and affordable medical, dental & vision plans, with coverage beginning as of an employee's start date.
  • Retirement: University-funded retirement plan with full vesting after 3 years of service.
  • Tuition Assistance & Reimbursement Programs: $40 per class at the Harvard Extension School, discounted options through participating Harvard graduate schools, and reimbursement options for accredited schools outside of Harvard.
  • Transportation: 50% discount on MBTA passes, as well as additional options (rideshare, biking, etc.) to assist employees in their daily commute.
  • Wellness & Professional Development: Programs and classes at little or no cost, including stress management, hard & soft skills development, career planning, massages, nutrition, meditation, and complimentary health services. Additionally, access to Harvard athletic facilities, libraries, campus events -- and many discounts for various cultural and leisure activities throughout metro Boston.
Join the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health to support our mission of health research and education, and to be a part of the oldest institution of higher learning in the country!


  • The Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health does not provide visa sponsorship, now or in the future, for staff positions.
  • Harvard University requires pre-employment reference checks and background screenings.
  • This position has a 90 day orientation and review period. 

The University requires all Harvard community members to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 and remain up to date with COVID-19 vaccine boosters, as detailed in Harvard’s Vaccine & Booster Requirements . Individuals may claim exemption from the vaccine requirement for medical or religious reasons. More information regarding the University’s COVID vaccination requirement, exemptions, and verification of vaccination status may be found at the University’s “COVID-19 Vaccine Information” webpage .

Job Function

Information Technology


USA - MA - Boston

Job Code

I0756P Applications Professional II


00 - Non Union, Exempt or Temporary

Pre-Employment Screening

Education, Identity

Commitment to Equity, Diversity, Inclusion, and Belonging

At the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, we believe that diversity is integral to the Harvard experience and our mission of improving public health education, research and policy. Diversity of cultural backgrounds, identities, lived experiences, perspectives, and ways of understanding the world enriches our community and enables us to best meet the public health needs of the United States and the world. Ongoing learning and development related to diversity allows for both individual and institutional growth, and is necessary to foster and sustain a culture of inclusion. To achieve this, we are committed to ensuring equitable access to opportunities for learning, living, and working at the Harvard Chan School. We maintain an unwavering dedication to diversity, inclusion, and belonging as core to our institutional values and to actively counter, minimize, and address racism, sexism, xenophobia, homophobia, gender bias, and all forms of discrimination.

Learn more about the School’s mission, objectives, and core values and our diversity, inclusion, and belonging initiatives.

EEO Statement

We are an equal opportunity employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status, gender identity, sexual orientation, pregnancy and pregnancy-related conditions, or any other characteristic protected by law.

*Please mention UCareers.com to employers when applying for this job*
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