Fellow Feature: Raoul Shram

9 Jan 2024 - 4 min

Every year, the Netherlands eScience Center shares a call for applications for our Fellowship Programme. The Programme is aimed at members of the academic research community who are passionate about acting as ambassadors for the use of research software. It is for individuals who have the ambition to promote or improve the use of research software within their organization or discipline. Our 2023 fellows are currently halfway through their fellowship year. What better time to showcase their progress over the course of their programme. 

We will present you with interviews with each of 14 Fellows. From creating tutorials to organizing interactive seminars, our Fellows are at the forefront of shaping the landscape of research software practices.

Our first Fellow interview is with Raoul Shram, a research software engineer who graduated from Utrecht University and currently works as an ICT developer. He shared his experience as a Fellow at the Netherlands eScience Center and about his project entitled ‘Lowering the Barrier to Creating Workflows’.

Q: What initially inspired you to apply to the fellowship programme at the eScience Center?

A: Everything started when I saw some researchers struggling with their workflows, and with the help of the Netherlands eScience Center, I hope to be able to make a lasting impact in this regard, using their expertise and connections. 

Q: How is your fellowship helping you promote the use of research software in your own community?

A: The fellowship helps me bring expertise to the researchers.

Q: What have you enjoyed, thus far, during your fellowship at the Netherlands eScience Center?

A: I am really grateful to be able to connect with other Fellows and share experiences. The expertise of engineers at the eScience Center is very useful. The organization of the Fellowship Programme is also top-notch!

Q: What are some challenges that you have faced throughout your project, thus far? How have you overcome these obstacles?

A: Connecting to the target community is hard, especially when it is not an already well-established community. Not having sufficient expertise in the subject myself also makes it harder. I’m trying to overcome these obstacles by connecting to experts and researchers.

Q: Keeping this project in mind, what do you hope to do after your fellowship?

A: I hope the knowledge and expertise that I’ve built up during this Fellowship project will continue to be used to improve other researchers’ workflows.

Q: What do you hope will change in the use of research software in your community after your fellowship?

A: I hope that the research will be more reproducible and reusable. Particularly with regards to the reusability of research software, I expect that we can ensure that more projects will not just “die” when the postdoc or PhD researcher who was responsible for them. 

Who are we? 

The eScience Center is a research organization dedicated to applying research software to answer research questions in any scientific domain through project collaborations. It has the largest concentration of dedicated, high-level research software expertise in the Netherlands. The eScience Center also has a fellowship programme and makes all of its software and training materials openly available online. For more information about what we offer, visit esciencecenter.nl.