Nov 21, 2021

Research Engineer

  • Ethereum Foundation
Full time Dev ops

Job Description

About the Ethereum Foundation

The Ethereum Foundation (EF) is a global non-profit organization dedicated to supporting Ethereum and related technologies. Our mission is to do what is best for Ethereum’s long-term success. Our role is to allocate resources to critical projects, to be a valued voice within the Ethereum ecosystem, and to advocate for Ethereum to the outside world.


The EF is looking to hire a research engineer. This role sits at the interface between research and development with a focus on the proof-of-stake consensus layer (and as far as it is relevant to the Merge, the execution layer). Your work will span many areas including:

  • prototyping that aids in bringing research ideas into production
  • designing and running experiments in relation to research (e.g. simulating 1000 nodes and behaviors in a DHT)
  • optimizing and designing algorithms to support client implementations
  • testing as it pertains to consensus specs and the associated client implementations of these specs
  • generally spanning the chasm between research and engineering as it pertains to Ethereum’s consensus layer

This role requires not only sophisticated engineering but also understanding the complex system of interrelated research, specs, and software that is the Ethereum consensus layer. This role also requires a level of independence in identifying the gaps and where additional engineering can make an impact.

Immediate themes of work concern the above areas as they pertain to the Merge and Sharding, but Ethereum R&D is ever-evolving and thus the role requires flexibility and the ability to quickly adapt to changes.

This is a great role for someone who is fascinated by protocol-level research and development work and wants to engage further. The applicant should not expect a lot of training with respect to generic research and development but can expect as much onboarding as is required for understanding and working with the consensus layer.

About you:

You are fascinated by what is possible with the Ethereum protocol and love following the latest research on Bonus points if you have notifications enabled for the consensus specs repo.

You have an interdisciplinary skillset bridging conceptual understanding and implementation expertise. You are able to read a sketch of some new protocol idea, prototype the core software, and provide feedback via metrics or other data on performance to influence further refinement of the research.

You can learn new fields that interest you. This work spans the fields of cryptography, economics, p2p networking, and game theory. You’re good at learning the basics, asking “dumb” questions, and finding the material you need to get up to speed on something important.

You’re independently minded and self-motivated. You’re able to work without much oversight, going deep on a topic until you’ve built a sufficient understanding.

You’re a clear writer & communicator. You’re able to share what you’ve learned with others, increasing the leverage of your work by striving to help others not only understand but even extend your work.

You’re knowledgeable about the Ethereum ecosystem and are aligned with its long-term success. You don’t want to take shortcuts today at the expense of the network’s security tomorrow.

Contract details

  • Prefer full-time candidates but are open to exploring options for the right person.
  • We’re flexible. If you’re interested in this role but not sure about how it fits into your life, apply anyway.
  • Fully remote

How to apply

  • Submit something you have done that highlights your facility with the above work. This could be a link to some research or a Github repo. You can include a CV, link to a website, or reference any materials that you think might help but tangible outputs are prioritized.

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