BOSC 2017

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The Bosc Pear

The 18th Annual Bioinformatics Open Source Conference (BOSC 2017) was held July 22-23, 2017 in Prague as part of the ISMB/ECCB meeting.

Check out the BOSC 2017 Schedule, including self-organizing Birds-of-a-feather groups (BOFs)!

For 2018, we are trying something different and holding BOSC 2018 along with the Galaxy Community Conference in a new unified event (GCC BOSC 2018), which will take place in Portland, Oregon, June 25-30.


The Bioinformatics Open Source Conference (BOSC) is organized by the Open Bioinformatics Foundation (OBF), a non-profit group dedicated to promoting the practice and philosophy of open source software development and open science within the biological research community. Since its inception in 2000, BOSC has provided a forum for developers and users to interact and share research results and ideas in open source bioinformatics. BOSC’s broad spectrum of topics includes practical techniques for solving bioinformatics problems; software development practices; standards and ontologies; approaches that promote open science and sharing of data, results and software; and ways to grow open source communities while promoting diversity within them.

We also organize a Codefest, a two-day community development session, usually just before or after BOSC. This is an opportunity for anyone interested in open science, biology and programming to meet, discuss and work collaboratively. Everyone is welcome to attend Codefest 2017 (whether or not you attend BOSC).

Please spread the word about BOSC--all are welcome. On Twitter, follow @OBF_BOSC and use hash tag #bosc2017.

Summaries of BOSC 2017

There were lots of tweets about #BOSC2017 by participants, and a number of blog posts, including:

Important Dates

  • April 13, 2017: Deadline for submitting abstracts for full talks
  • June 5, 2017: Deadline for submitting abstracts for late-breaking lightning talks and/or late posters (no walk-in posters accepted this year)
  • July 20-21, 2017: Codefest 2017, Brmlab, Prague (a non-profit, community-run hackerspace)
  • July 21-25: Combined ISMB/ECCB meeting
  • July 22-23, 2017: BOSC 2017, Prague

Session Topics

BOSC covers all aspects of bioinformatics and open science software, including (but not limited to):

  • Open Science and Reproducible Research
  • Open Biomedical Data
  • Citizen/Participatory Science
  • Standards and Interoperability
  • Data Science
  • Workflows
  • Visualization
  • Medical and Translational Bioinformatics
  • Developer Tools and Libraries
  • Bioinformatics Open Source Project Progress Reports
  • PANEL: Open Data--Standards, Opportunities and Challenges

Keynote Speakers

This year's keynote speakers will be Nick Loman (University of Birmingham), a vocal proponent of open genomic data in healthcare who heads the Zibra project, and Madeleine Ball (Open Humans), who is dedicated to opening human health data.

More information about BOSC 2017 Keynote Speakers


To attend BOSC 2017, you need to register for ISMB/ECCB 2017. You can register for the full meeting (July 21-25) or just the first two full days (July 22-23).

In the past, BOSC has taken place the two days before ISMB as a Special Interest Group (SIG). This year, ISMB is trying a new structure: the SIGs (now called Communities of Special Interest, or COSIs) are integrated into the main ISMB meeting. BOSC will take place the first two full days of ISMB (July 22-23). BOSC attendees can register for the full ISMB/ECCB meeting (July 21-25) or for just two days (there is no single-day registration option this year). Note that the pricing structure is designed to encourage participants to join ISCB, as this saves you money overall.

If you choose the July 22-23 option, this includes the opening ISMB reception and keynote the evening of July 21. As in past years, you will be able to move freely between all of the COSIs that take place during the days for which you register.


BOSC is organised by the Open Bioinformatics Foundation, a non-profit, volunteer-run group dedicated to promoting the practice and philosophy of Open Source software development and Open Science within the biological research community.

The Hyve logo
Mozilla Science Lab logo
Repositive Limited logo
Seven Bridges

We are grateful to and welcome The Hyve (open source solutions for bioinformatics), Mozilla Science Lab (a community of researchers, developers, and librarians making research open and accessible), Repositive Limited (connecting the genomics community with the data they need), Seven Bridges (the Biomedical Data Analysis Platform) and eLife (cutting-edge technology for cutting-edge research) as new sponsors for BOSC 2017, and GigaScience (an open access, open data, open peer-review journal) as a returning sponsor.

If you would like to be a sponsor of BOSC, please contact us at bosc@open-bio.org.

Organizing Committee


  • Nomi L. Harris (Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory)


Organizing Committee Members

Review Committee

Kai Blin*, Christian Brueffer*, Scott Cain*, Jacqueline Campbell, Brad Chapman*, John Chilton, Peter Cock*, Karen Cranston, Anamaria Crisan, Michael Crusoe, Philip Ewels, Christopher Fields*, Konrad Förstner*, George Githinji, Bastian Greshake*, Björn Grüning, Nomi Harris*, Michael Heuer*, Karsten Hokamp*, Hans-Rudolf Hotz*, Shaun Jackman, Hilmar Lapp, Jessica Maia, Scott Markel*, Hervé Ménager, Monica Munoz-Torres, Frank Nothaft, Konstantin Okonechnikov, Kieran O'Neill*, Lorena Pantano*, Michael Reich, Surya Saha*, Gianluca Della Vedova*, Heather Wiencko*, Jason Williams

∗ Also reviewed Late-Breaking Lightning Talk abstracts

Previous BOSCs

Contact Us

  • Follow BOSC on Twitter: @OBF_BOSC, #bosc2017
  • If you'd like to join the mailing list for BOSC-related announcements, including the call for abstracts and deadline reminders, please subscribe to bosc-announce. This list has low traffic, and your address will be kept private.
  • If you have questions about the conference, or would like to volunteer to help out, please contact the organizers at bosc@open-bio.org.

ISMB Code of Conduct

In March 2015, ISMB published a Code of Conduct that applies to SIGs (including BOSC) as well as the main ISMB/ECCB meeting.