About Me

My name is Hilmar Lapp. My Open Researcher and Contributor ID (ORCID) is 0000-0001-9107-0714.

I care about enabling more and better science, in particular for the long tail of science. My research interests are in reusable and interoperable software and data, large-scale data integration, and in building open sustainable eScience infrastructure. I have a dual background in biology (major) and computer science (minor). I have more than two decades worth of experience developing various informatics tools and resources, including commercial applications, real-time scientific data acquisition software, bioinformatics data integration systems, data exchange standards, and ontologies.

The best and typically up-to-date sources for my publication list are my Mendeley and ORCID profiles. Many public talks I have given are on my public Slideshare collection. For citation metrics of my publications see my Google Scholar profile, and for a more varied consideration of how my work is picked up by others visit my ImpactStory profile.

Open source, data & science

I believe that openly sharing and reusing all scholarly inputs and outputs is key to accelerating the progress and broader impact of science, and that the scholarly communication process works best if conducted as openly as possible. I aspire to practice and promote these principles whenever I can, including developing code in the open, archiving data in public repositories, publishing in open-access journals, and signing my peer reviews.

I have served on the Board of Directors of the Open Bioinformatics Foundation (OBF) from its beginnings in 2001. Since December 2011 I serve as the OBF's President.

Inspired by the success of the Bioinformatics Open Source Conference (BOSC), I started the Informatics for Evolution, Phylogenetics, and Biodiversity Conference (iEvoBio) in 2010.


I am the Assistant Director for Informatics at the National Evolutionary Synthesis Center (NESCent). In this role I am involved with and have helped initiate many of the Center’s cyberinfrastructure initiatives aimed at grass-roots community capacity buildimg in informatics, including the Center's hackathon program and Google Summer of Code™ (GSoC) participation. I am co-PI of the NSF-funded Phenoscape project on ontological annotation of evolutionary phenotype observations, co-convener of the Biodiversity Information Standards (TDWG) Interest Group on Phylogenetics Standards, senior personnel in the Dryad digital data repository for data supporting scientific publications, and a participant in the Data Integration and Semantics Working Group of DataONE.

Before joining NESCent, I worked for almost 10 years in functional genome informatics in the biopharmaceutical industry sector, where among other things I built SymAtlas, one of the first decidedly gene-centric database integrating genome annotation databases with gene function data.


This is my personal website and blog. Opinions expressed here are solely mine, or those of the author, not of my employer or funding agency.