Better Scientific Software (BSSw) Fellowship

The Better Scientific Software (BSSw) Fellowship supports leaders as they work to enhance scientific software and developer productivity. The program’s primary goal is to locate and identify pioneers within the scientific community who can enhance the efficiency and sustainability of scientific codes. Projects that have been conducted by past participants include workshops, tutorials, and other activities that engage the scientific software community. In 2020 an SHI employee and in 2021 SHI Founder and Director were named BSSw Fellows; both were focused on advancing developer productivity through diversity and inclusion.

In 2020, Dr. Damian Rouson worked with SHI through the BSSw fellowship. Dr. Rouson’s project focused on providing tutorials on agile scientific software development to underrepresented students. The project interleaved career development through hands-on practice of agile techniques. During the first half of the workshop, participants learned about the value of fellowships, followed by a discussion on agile development that focused on Markdown document creation in a browser on Github. The tutorials were educational for students with little-to-no coding experience. After the entry-level coding session, students wrapped up the tutorial by completing a fellowship application as a professional development activity using agile.

SHI is delighted to continue working with BSSw in 2021. Our Founder and Director Dr. Leung is one of three Class of 2021 BSSw Fellows. Dr. Leung will expand on Dr. Rouson’s project by increasing developer productivity and innovation through diversity and inclusion. Dr. Leung’s project addresses challenges faced by the Department of Energy (DOE) laboratories and other institutions regarding diversity in the workforce and retaining staff from underrepresented backgrounds. To tackle these issues, Dr. Leung plans to develop guidelines, consisting of lessons learned and activities that can be adopted and implemented by the scientific software development community.

“The leadership team of the Better Scientific Software (BSSw) Fellowship Program is delighted to include Mary Ann as a 2021 fellow. SHI’s work to expand participation in the scientific software developer community is unique and can help us tremendously to advance overall scientific productivity as we broaden and diversify this community. The SHI model has potential for deep and meaningful impact, and we look forward to Mary Ann’s continued advances.”

Lois Curfman McInnes, Senior Computational Scientist,
Mathematics and Computer Science Division, Argonne National Laboratory.

Learn more about the fellowship projects:

BSSw 2020 Fellowship: Dr. Damian Rouson

BSSw 2021 Fellowship: Dr. Mary Ann Leung