University of Waterloo Libraries

CLIR Postdoctoral Fellowship in Software Curation 2018-2020

The University of Waterloo Library and Cheriton School of Computer Science seek technically skilled and highly collaborative applicants for a two-year postdoctoral fellowship in software curation. The position is offered as part of the Council on Library and Information Resources (CLIR) Postdoctoral Fellowship Program.

The CLIR Postdoctoral Fellow in Software Curation will lead research into software preservation and curation with the support of the University of Waterloo Library and University of Waterloo campus stakeholders. Jointly appointed by the Library and the School of Computer Science, the fellow will work among the STEM liaison librarians, with the Library’s digital initiatives department, which is responsible for data curation and associated technologies, and with researchers at the University of Waterloo to establish a framework and a set of best practices for curating software code that requires preservation over time–primarily for its value in facilitating research and the reproducibility of research.

The Fellow will establish working relationships with faculty and research teams that will support the creation of case studies to inform the development of a framework and set of best practices to curate software code. Of particular interest is exploring versioning practices along with curation and preservation principles and building a shared understanding of the role and relationship between these practices and principles. The focus of the Fellow’s work on software curation will align with the Canadian context, emphasizing emerging federal programs focused on digitally-intensive research infrastructure, including the Tri-agency requirements for data management and curation, extending to curating software as a research output. (See the Leadership Council for Digital Research Infrastructure, FRDR – the Canadian Federated Research Network, the Portage research data management network, for more information.) Through the CLIR cohort and relationships with initiatives such as the Software Preservation Network (SPN), the Fellow will share findings and collaborate in the broader North American context. The Fellowship will begin in July 2018 with the start date determined by mutual agreement. In addition to the work undertaken at the University of Waterloo, the incumbent will participate in cohort based activities with other CLIR Fellows. Should the successful Fellow have the appropriate background and interest, teaching opportunities in the School of Computer Science may be available.


  • Lead a comprehensive exploration of the scope and current practice of software curation globally with an emphasis on practices in Canada to inform potential development of library services
  • Using a case study approach, investigate and share issues and opportunities associated with software curation in support of the reproducibility of research. This includes identifying selection, preservation, and service strategies for software curation that take into account best practices that are currently in existence or being developed and issues of legal restrictions
  • Investigate similarities and differences in software curation needs  across the disciplines
  • Establish a University of Waterloo framework for curating software that applies digital curation principles and practice to software
  • Share scholarly findings observations and recommendations via presentations and publications.
  • Support knowledge translation to a broader audience using approaches that include social media

Required Skills and Qualifications

  • Ph.D. in a relevant discipline acquired within the five years preceding the fellowship appointment
  • Familiarity with software development and associated technologies
  • Experience using software repositories and version control systems (e.g., Git) as well as virtual computing environments (e.g., Docker)
  • Strong research skills, including using exploratory research methodologies
  • Demonstrated commitment to collaborative research
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills

Preferred Skills and Qualifications

  • Experience with the techniques and tools of software curation
  • Familiarity with the long-term management issues of digital scholarship
  • Familiarity with the standards and practice of the digital curation community
  • Teaching experience in an academic setting as a teaching assistant or instructor (undergraduate or graduate)

Candidates must meet CLIR’s eligibility requirements listed at:

Compensation and Working Conditions

  • Salary is $70,000 USD, paid in CAD
  • $3,000 USD/yr. of travel and/or equipment support directly from CLIR
  • Work shall be completed on-site at the University of Waterloo

How to apply: Applications are submitted via the CLIR Postdoctoral Fellowship Program. CLIR will forward qualified applicants’ information to host institutions. The University of Waterloo will conduct its own review process on all applications received from CLIR.

Apply by December 29, 2017, at

Employment Equity:

The University of Waterloo respects, appreciates, and encourages diversity. We welcome and encourage applications from all qualified individuals regardless of race, ethnic origin, religion, age, colour, gender, sexual orientation, ability or disability. Canadian citizens and permanent residents will be given priority. The University of Waterloo is committed to accessibility for persons with disabilities.

In just sixty years, the University of Waterloo, located at the heart of Canada’s technology hub, has become one of Canada’s leading comprehensive universities with 36,000 full- and part-time students in undergraduate and graduate programs. A globally focused institution, celebrated as Canada’s most innovative university for 26 consecutive years, Waterloo is home to the world’s leading post-secondary co-operative education program and encourages enterprising partnerships in learning, research and discovery. In 2017 the University was named among Canada’s top 100 employers. In the next decade, the university is committed to building a better future for Canada and the world by championing innovation and collaboration to create solutions relevant to the needs of today and tomorrow.