Postdoctoral Research Scholar

Tempe, AZ

Arizona State University

The Department of Physics in The College of Liberal Arts and Sciences invites applications for a full-time, benefits-eligible Postdoctoral Scholar position beginning summer 2022. This is a fixed-term, fiscal year (twelve month) appointment with no tenure implications. The position can be performed remotely.

The Postdoctoral Scholar will perform research and development related to the MDAnalysis library software MDAnalysis is the most widely used Python-based package for the analysis of molecular simulations with thousands of users world-wide. Specific Responsibilities focus on launching the new “MDAKits” ecosystem of analysis software packages.  MDAKits contain code based on MDAnalysis that solves a specific scientific problem and make use of templates and API definitions to provide users with a consistent, well-tested tool kit. MDAKits help to address two long-standing challenges in the molecular simulation community: effort duplication and reproducibility. The Postdoctoral Scholar will lead the development of new MDAKits and support the creation of MDAKits from existing code. They will be actively involved in education and outreach aspects with the global MDAnalysis user and developer community. The position provides the opportunity for high-impact work in an active and welcoming Open Source community. A flexible work schedule is needed as this position will be working with a global team of developers in various time zones.

The College values our cultural and intellectual diversity, and continually strives to foster a welcoming and inclusive environment. We are especially interested in applicants who can strengthen the diversity of the academic community.

Minimum Qualifications:

  • PhD in physics, chemistry, materials science or related field with demonstrated experience in molecular dynamics simulations by time of appointment
  • Evidence of ability to program in Python
  • Evidence of ability to develop software in a distributed environment with use of git and GitHub
  • Experience with software engineering techniques, including testing (with pytest) and continuous integration.
  • Evidence of organization and communication skills, including writing of technical academic articles.


Desired Qualifications:

  • Experience with MDAnalysis or similar software packages, including active involvement in the community around the package
  • Experience in creating, deploying, and maintaining Python software packages within a packaging ecosystem such as PyPi or anaconda
  • Programming in C/C++ and Cython
  • Development of software in the molecular sciences, in particular for the analysis of molecular dynamics trajectories
  • Evidence for leadership roles in open source software development, such as reviewer/approver of pull requests to a project source code repository or membership in a decision making body of a project
  • Experience in creating technical documentation as well as written tutorials and video tutorials for technical content
  • Experience in organizing workshops and conferences


To apply, please submit the following materials electronically using this link: 1.) a cover letter; 2.) a current curriculum vitae; 3.) names and contact information of two references; 4.) a brief statement (2 pages or less) highlighting how your experience in developing software (with links to public code repositories with your work, e.g., on GitHub) and your engagement in the computational molecular sciences will enable you to contribute to making the new MDAKit ecosystem a success. 5.) a statement addressing how your past and/or potential contributions to diversity and inclusion will advance ASU’s commitment to inclusive excellence

The initial deadline to apply is July 10, 2022. If not filled, applications will be evaluated every week thereafter until the search is closed.

The College values our cultural and intellectual diversity, and continually strives to foster a welcoming and inclusive environment. We are especially interested in applicants who can strengthen the diversity of the academic community. Learn more about what The College of Liberal Arts and Sciences has to offer by visiting

A background check is required for employment. Arizona State University is a VEVRAA Federal Contractor and an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, sex, national origin, disability, protected veteran status, or any other basis protected by law.

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Posted: 06/01/2022