30th-31st January 2018

Venue: The Alan Turing Institute, London

Start time: 9am Tuesday, finish: 4pm Wednesday

A two-day workshop bringing together leaders of Research Software Engineering groups and communities around the world to help each other improve access to software expertise in research by pooling knowledge, coordinating efforts and establishing collaboration amongst our wider networks. 

This workshop is for people running RSE groups, national networks or in the process of setting them up. To have the most impact we are looking for people with knowledge of, and the ability to influence, RSE provision in their country. We define RSE groups as teams of dedicated software developers working with researchers to provide tools, advice, collaboration and training. It is understood that actual job titles and group names will vary widely.

The goals of the workshop are to:

  • Improve the ability of RSE leaders to influence funding and career structures in their countries
  • Support the establishment of further national RSE networks
  • Instigate international collaboration and coordination on RSE matters
  • Connect RSE leaders to spark collaborations between them and their onward networks
  • Understand similarities and differences in the RSE landscape and funding between countries



Day 1

09:00 – 09:30 Introduction and talk on UK landscape
09:30 – 11:00 Invited Talks (Session 1)
11:00 – 11:30 Refreshment Break
11:30 – 13:00 2 Minute Lightning Talks
13:00 – 14:00 Lunch
14:00 – 15:30 Invited Talks (Session 2)
15:30 – 16:00 Refreshment Break
16:00 – 17:30 Breakout Pitches & Brainstorming
17:30 – 19:00 Free time /  Pre Dinner Drinks
19:00 – 21:30 Workshop Dinner at The Somers Town Coffee House

Day 2

09:00 – 09:30 Introduction
09:30 – 11:00 Breakouts
11:00 – 11:30 Refreshment Break
11:30 – 13:00 Breakouts
13:00 – 14:00 Lunch
14:00 – 15:15 Feedback from breakouts
15:15 – 15:30 Closing Summary
15:30 – 16:00 Refreshment Break


Invited Talks

Making RSE Visible and Supported at Oak Ridge National Laboratory
David E. Bernholdt, Jay Jay Billings, and Barney MacCabe
While Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) has long had de facto research software engineers (RSEs) and at least the rudiments of a job track that they can follow, historically, RSEs have mostly been in the shadows. Through an internal Scientific Software Initiative, we are now working to enhance ORNL’s software development capabilities while simultaneously making RSEs more visible and better supported within the institution. While very much a work in progress, I will discuss how we’re trying to “professionalize” software development at ORNL, including career path and professional development issues, and our funding and management model. I will also discuss some of the similarities and differences between the national laboratory and academic environments with respect to RSEs.

Research Software Engineering at Princeton University
Ian Cosden
The Research Software Engineering group within the central Research Computing department at Princeton University has expanded rapidly in the last year growing from a single person to a team of five. 2018 promises continued growth as demand for the unique skills of RSEs has exceeded both expectations and capacity. In this talk, I will outline the current Research Computing landscape at Princeton and how the RSE group is differentiated from other Research Computing efforts. I will cover the unique ways we have deviated from traditional funding models and organizational structures as well as some of the obstacles we encountered in establishing the group. I will briefly discuss how we hope to capitalize on the current success of the group and our plans for some of the long-term challenges we anticipate.


Sandra Gesing

Teresa Gomez-Diaz, Geneviève Romier

Martin Hammitzsch

Scott Henwood

Chris Hill

Radek Lonka

Melissa Weber Mendonça

Aleksandra Pawlik

Educational Initiatives at The Molecular Sciences Software Institute (MolSSI)
Daniel Smith
The Molecular Sciences Software Institute (MolSSI) is launching a series of educational initiatives throughout the United States who’s aim is to increase the usage of “best practices” (version control, continuous integrating, code coverage, etc) within the computational molecular sciences (CMS) community. These initiatives target either new graduate students, established graduate students, or specific CMS packages that already exist, but do not incorporate these best practices. A short discussion is held outlining these initiatives along with a details on how MolSSI is attempting to maximize its impact within budgetary and personnel constraints.

Ben van Werkhoven


The workshop is being organised by UK RSE with input on the programme from RSE leaders in at least five other countries.

Questions or suggestions about this workshop can be sent to info@rse.ac.uk (please put “international workshop” in the subject). Participants can also ask questions on the dedicated Slack channel.


The following hotels are recommended for your stay during the meeting. All are within easy reach of the Turing Institute as well as national and international transport links.

  • Great Northern Hotel London 
    Pancras Road, King’s Cross, London N1C 4TB
  • King’s Cross Inn Hotel
    9-11 Euston Rd, Kings Cross, London NW1 2SA
  • Megaro Hotel
    Belgrove St, Kings Cross, London WC1H 8AB
  • Veeve Gem of Kings Cross
    Albion Walk, Islington, London, N1 9EJ
  • Comfort Inn St Pancras
    2-5 St Chad’s St, Kings Cross, London WC1H 8BD
  • Premier Inn Euston
    1 Duke’s Rd, Kings Cross, London WC1H 9PJ
  • Premier Inn St Pancras
    88 Euston Rd, Kings Cross, London NW1 2RA
  • Premier Inn King’s Cross
    26-30 York Way, Kings Cross, London N1 9AA
  • AirBnB Bloomsbury
  • AirBnB Central