Research Assistant (Scientific Computer Programmer) (JD-0720-013)



Research ssisitant (Scientific Computer Programmer)


Mathematical Modelling Group


This post is based in OUCRU Ho Chi Minh City.

Hours of work



This is a 1 year contracted position with possibility of extension to 36 months

Reporting to

Dr. Marc Choisy – Head of Mathematical Modelling Group

Vacancy reference



Oxford University has a Clinical Research Unit in Viet Nam working in partnership with the Hospital for Tropical Diseases in Ho Chi Minh City and a network of hospitals across Viet Nam and Asia to conduct a wide range of clinical and community studies including clinical trials of drugs and vaccines. The Unit is based in the Hospital for Tropical Diseases in Ho Chi Minh City. The Unit’s main focus of work is in typhoid, dengue, infections of the central nervous system, influenza, malaria, tetanus, influenza, HIV and tuberculosis.

The Mathematical Modelling Group uses and develops mathematical and computational models to answer basic and applied research questions on the ecology and evolution of infectious diseases. Studied diseases include dengue, hepatitis C, COVID-19, measles, influenza. Questions relate to the seasonality and spatial dynamics of infectious diseases, the role of environmental and climatic drivers, as well as human population characteristics and movements. Applications relate to the prevention and control of infectious diseases by surveillance, vaccination and other potential interventions. We work closely with the National Institute of Hygiene and Epidemiology (NIHE) in Hanoi, in particular for the analysis of national surveillance data, including serological data.

Please see more information on OUCRU Website:

Job summary

The job involves the development of computer programs simulating the dynamics and evolution of infectious diseases. Such programs will be based on numerical methods (such as optimization or differential equations integration), stochastic simulations and agent-based modeling. The development of programs will be done either from scratch through discussion with the supervisor or from the implementation of methods and techniques described in the scientific literature. Some of these programs will evolve into R packages that will be published on CRAN ( and for which the research assistant will have to write the documentation and a scientific journal article and do the maintenance. The research assistant will have the opportunity to develop his/her own research questions later on and evolve his position. The candidate should be academically ambitious, and should have a desire to pursue further study and research.

Key responsibilities and tasks

Write programs in R and/or C++ to assist research projects.

Publish and maintain R packages on CRAN.

Assist students and researchers in debugging and optimizing their code.

Selection criteria


  • BSc or MSc in Computer Science or any another discipline that involves programming literacy.



  • Knowledge in R, python or Julia. For the job, the research assistant will have to focus on R since it’s the main language used in the group and other groups at OUCRU.
  • Knowledge in C, C++ or Java. For the job, the research assistant will have to focus on C++ since it’s the compiled language that integrates the best with R.
  • Knowledge of Git and GitHub
  • Knowledge of UNIX-like systems
  • Fluent English (IELTS equivalent 5.0)



  • Basic web development with the Hugo static website generator
  • Knowledge in database management
  • Statistical and mathematical knowledge
  • GIS knowledge
  • Ability to set-up and administrate a cluster of computers
  • Knowledge in parallelisation and code optimisation


–    Contracted salary: Negotiate (depending on actual experience and education).

–    Optional insurance : In-patient and out-patient medical coverage; Personal accident insurance coverage

–    Two months salary for annual bonus and clothes

–    Annual leave 18 days/year for the first year, a maximum of 30 days

–    Other responsibilities and benefits are based on Viet Nam Labor Law.

How to apply

Interested qualified candidates are invited to send their detailed resume and cover letter in English, including copies of relevant degrees, certificates, either by email or by post to the following address:

Oxford University Clinical Research Unit

Laboratory of Clinical Science

Hospital for Tropical Diseases

764 Vo Van Kiet, Ward 1, District 5, HCMC

Tel: 39237954



* We thanks all applicants for their interests but only short-listed candidates will be contacted for interview.

Contact person

Ms. Nguyen Thi Hong Phuc

Deadline for submission

20 August 2020