Research Computing Facilitator
Director of Research Computing
Research Computing and Data (RCD) services require people across a wide range of professional roles and skill sets. The community of people in RCD-relevant roles are evolving into a distinct profession, widely understood to be an integral part of scholarly research. RCD positions differ significantly from traditional enterprise IT positions, and are also distinct from pure research positions; in fact, they require many elements of both. Through the Campus Research Computing Consortium (CaRCC) and prior efforts, the community is exploring paths to professionalization, emphasizing the improvement of status for these roles in the academic research community, as well as helping community members to enhance the quality of service they provide. Furthermore, people in these roles have been clamoring for a more unified “community of communities” to bring existing communities of professionals and service providers together, to clearly communicate challenges and opportunities, and to provide a shared voice advocating for the profession. CaRCC has supported such a community through several activities: The CaRCC People Network provides a gathering place for the community, supporting “tracks” associated with each of the facings, much like an ongoing virtual conference. We will describe these activities, and the progress of this community towards professionalizing RCD roles. Among a number of working groups, CaRCC’s RCD professionalization working group has developed an RCD job family matrix to provide HR organizations with appropriate job family classifications for RCD roles, is working to define career arcs for these roles, and is planning to conduct a national census of RCD professionals.