Ontario Institute for Cancer Research



, Ontario


Job Type:


Degree Level Required:

558 days ago Apply now

Position:        Outreach Lead
Site:               MaRS Centre, Toronto
Department:  Genome Informatics
Reports To:    Director, Genome Informatics
Salary:           Commensurate with level of experience
Hours:           35 hours/week
Status:           Full-time, Permanent


We are growing! With new projects and lots of exciting technologies, the Ontario Institute for Cancer Research (OICR) is looking for passionate and talented software developers across the entire software stack to join the Genome Informatics Software Engineering team to continue building cutting edge tools and infrastructures used by researchers around the globe to fight cancer. Our open source applications handle vast amounts of data (2+ PB) and run on large compute environments. Designed and implemented by our in-house developers, we maintain a diverse set of tools and projects, from complex ETL systems to modern user interfaces. The Genome Informatics team work on a variety of projects including:

  • ICGC-DCC (githubapplication) – Our most mature and well known project is a submission system comprised of an ETL pipeline and data portal coordinating cancer research on 86 projects with participants from all over the world. With ICGC-ARGO (github,application), ICGC is entering a new phase with an engaging and complex set of software engineering challenges ahead of us, such as providing researchers with access to 100’s of billions of genetic variants.
  • ICGC-ARGO (githubapplication) – The next generation and evolution of the original ICGC-DCC, this platform aims to uniformly analyze specimens from 100,000 donors with high quality clinical data in order to address outstanding questions that are vital to the quest to defeat cancer.
  • Cancer Genome Collaboratory (githubwebsite) – A compute and storage cloud operated by the team which is progressively enhanced with more tools to assist researchers running analysis pipelines.
  • VirusSeq Data Portal for COVID-19 (githubapplication) – The goal of the CanCOGeN VirusSeq project is to sequence up to 150,000 viral samples from Canadians testing positive for COVID-19 and make the sequences and associated non-personal contextual data available for research and exploration in an open-source and open-access data portal.
  • Human Cancer Models Initiative (HCMI) Catalog (github,application) – A searchable catalog of cancer models.

All those projects are underpinned by our flagship product, the Overture software suite ( Overture is a collection of open-source, extendable solutions for big-data genomic science that can easily be reused to support research. As the Overture suite and usage grows, we are looking for an enthusiastic outreach officer to lead our outreach and user-facing efforts.

The Overture Outreach Coordinator will be involved in teaching, training, and helping bioinformatic users. They will contribute to the presentation of the Overture product, both written and orally, to international collaborators and interested parties. They will support writing of documentation and scientific publication about Overture and projects using it.

New employees who may be required to work on-site are required to be fully vaccinated for COVID-19 subject to the duty to accommodate on the basis of protected grounds pursuant to the Ontario Human Rights Code.

Fully vaccinated is defined as having received all of the required doses of a Health Canada approved vaccine and having received the final dose at least 14 days before your employment start date.

As described above, the requirement to be fully vaccinated is subject to the Ontario Human Rights Code. If the candidate is unable to receive the COVID-19 vaccine for a reason protected by the Code, requests for accommodation from the vaccine policy will be assessed on a case-by-case basis.

To learn more about working at OICR, visit our career page.


Responsibilities include:

  • Planning and delivering training workshops on our tools and APIs,and using these in NGS analysis; involving public presentations and extensive worldwide travel
  • Creating and maintaining documentation and e-learning materials on our advanced tools and APIs, and their application in bioinformatic analysis
  • Direct support of user queries via email and tracker on using our APIs and advanced tools
  • Direct interaction with our development teams to fix bugs identified by users and find solutions to user problems
  • Supporting usability testing of tools and APIs

Required Qualifications:

  • You have a background in bioinformatics or a related field
  • You have excellent English communication skills, written and verbal, both to facilitate effective communications with other team members and to communicate with external collaborators and users
  • You are highly self-motivated, able to work independently, and work well as a part of a team
  • You should be comfortable delivering presentations and workshops at scientific institutes worldwide

Bonus (Nice-to-Have) Skills:

  • Any experience in teaching, training, public outreach, online help or planning events, in or out of science, will be considered in your application
  • Self-reliance, resourcefulness, and ability to multitask well
  • Team player open to cooperation and collaboration – Building trusting relationships with colleagues is key in our team
  • Knowledge of cancer genomics is an asset but not essential


Additional Information:

OICR is a collaborative, not-for-profit research institute accelerating the development of new cancer research discoveries for patients around the world while maximizing the economic benefit of this research for the people of Ontario. We are dedicated professionals who bring expertise to each of our roles. We are looking for individuals who share our values of excellence, innovation, collaboration, impact, responsibility and community.

Launched in December 2005, OICR is an independent institute funded by the Government of Ontario through the Ministry of Colleges and Universities.

For more information about OICR, please visit the website at

CLOSING DATE: Until filled

OICR is committed to fostering a climate of equity, diversity, inclusion, and accessibility. This commitment is central to, and mutually supportive of, our research excellence mandate. We welcome and respect the diversity of all members of our community and we support an inclusive culture for all. We welcome all applicants, and encourage applications from racialized persons, Indigenous Peoples, women, persons with disabilities, LGBTQ2S persons, and others who may contribute to furthering a diversity of ideas within our community. OICR is committed to fair assessment of a candidate’s abilities, and consideration for diversity of thought, method, and experience. Providing an accessible workplace and recruitment process is important to us, as described in our Accessibility Plan (  Should you require accommodation during any stage in the recruitment process, please complete the form at the bottom of page Information received related to accommodation will be handled confidentially.

The Ontario Institute for Cancer Research thanks all applicants. However, only those under consideration will be contacted.

Resume Format: If you elect to apply, you will need a text or HTML version of your resume so that you can cut and paste it into the application box provided. Before you submit the completed application, you will be asked to attach one or two files to your application. Please attach your resume as a .pdf or .doc file.


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