open force field

An open and collaborative approach to better force fields

OpenFF positions
External opportunities

Science communicator

The Open Force Field Consortium is seeking a science communicator with a strong background in molecular simulation to drive our efforts in making our software infrastructure and scientific methods accessible and engaging through the creation of user-friendly documentation, tutorials and blog posts.

If you are interested in this position, please fill out this APPLICATION FORM.

Position description

The Open Force Field Initiative is a network of academic and industry researchers working together to advance science and infrastructure required for building the next generation of small molecule and biomolecular force fields, and to improve predictive power of computational drug discovery techniques. The effort has resulted with a number of tools and workflows used in force field parameterization and benchmarking. We are looking for a researcher with extensive experience in running (bio)molecular simulations and a passion for science communication to help us improve our documentation and create new tutorials and other educational materials for our users in industry and academia. This work will be done in collaboration with our researchers and software scientists.

The main responsibilities for this role include:

  • Creating and combining documentation/tutorials/examples to illustrate best practices and meet user needs.
  • Developing a systematic approach to organizing documentation and style across the whole project, including the adoption and implementation of a uniform style guide.

Other priorities for this role include:

  • Provide a new-user perspective on which documentation is needed and where it should be placed.
  • Building sustainable documentation, which includes automation/testing where appropriate to ensure that documentation remains up to date.
  • Identify potential gaps in functionality and suggest tools or features that would provide maximal value for users.
  • Identify needs in developer documentation and help remove barriers to new contributors.

Desired qualifications:

  • Experience in running (bio)molecular simulations (3+ years).
  • Passion for science communication and knowledge sharing.

Bonus qualifications:

  • Experience with writing software documentation.
  • Experience with software best practices.
  • Comfortable with the Python programming language.

About us

As mentioned above, the Open Force Field Initiative is a wider network of academic and industry researchers bound by the mutual aim of making force fields better and building open source infrastructure. The core team consists of PhD students, postdocs and software scientists led by 4 academic PIs: John Chodera, Mike Gilson, David Mobley, and Michael Shirts. The postdocs and PhD students do research and exploratory/prototyping work around data selection and tool building requirements in collaboration with a team of software scientists who are focused on infrastructure development, support and maintenance. More about our current achievements and future plans can be found in the Open Force Field Initiative Executive Summary.

The Open Force Field Initiative is built around open source, open data, and open science principles. We aim to publish frequently and openly and a sample of existing publications can be found here. All of our software is released under permissive licenses and we try to share all data produced in our efforts. We also release frequent scientific updates on our website and on GitHub, and we have annual meetings with our pharma partners to give updates on our progress. In addition to this and other events, the OpenFF Initiative provides access to a large network of young and established scientists in computational chemistry from academia and industry, offering access to both academic and industry career paths. Supporting all team members in achieving their career goals is taken seriously by all OpenFF PIs.


Remote position.

Appointment duration

This role is a contract-based and will be compensated based on hourly rates. The total number of hours billed will depend on the scope of work defined at the beginning of the contract.