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Now hiring: Junior Developer for Structured Data on Commons functionalities in OpenRefine

· 4 min read
Sandra Fauconnier

OpenRefine is seeking a Junior Developer - Structured Data on Wikimedia Commons additions to OpenRefine's codebase (paid contractor position).

OpenRefine is a power tool to clean messy data, popular in a diverse range of communities. It has been serving the needs of journalists, librarians, Wikipedians, scientists for more than 10 years, and is taught in many curricula and workshops around the world. OpenRefine is quite actively used on Wikidata, the structured data ‘sister’ of Wikipedia. In addition, thanks to a grant from the Wikimedia Foundation, OpenRefine will, between September 2021 and August 2022, be extended with structured data functionalities for Wikimedia Commons, the media repository of the Wikimedia ecosystem. This code extension will make it possible to batch edit structured data of existing files on Wikimedia Commons, and to batch upload new Wikimedia Commons files with structured data from the start. OpenRefine is a fiscally sponsored project of Code for Science & Society Inc, a 501(c)(3) charitable organization in the US.

The OpenRefine team is seeking a junior developer to help extend OpenRefine’s own code base with the abovementioned functionalities.

  • This is a part time, 8 months contract.
  • The work will take 35 weeks, from November 2021 until end June 2022.
  • For an average of 30 hours per week.
  • Fully remote. We encourage developers from outside of the USA and EU to apply.
  • We have between 36,000 USD and 42,000 USD available to complete this assignment, depending on experience. The payment details will be negotiated with the contractor, who will invoice Code for Science & Society for their work towards the corresponding goals.


The Junior Developer:

  • Reworks OpenRefine’s Wikibase extension to work with any entity type, including the MediaInfo entity type used on Wikimedia Commons.
  • Adds support for Wikibase federation in OpenRefine’s Wikibase extension, so that Wikidata items can be used in structured data generated for Commons.
  • Develops export and upload functionalities of media files through OpenRefine (either from harddrive or from URL)
  • Works in close collaboration with their colleague (Wikimedia developer), and will regularly coordinate with the product manager and the rest of the OpenRefine development team.

You can read more about this project, the planned tasks and the various roles, in the public grant proposal on


Please do not self-censor if you do not meet all of these criteria, as you will develop your skills during the project.

  • Experience developing in Java and Javascript.
  • Enthusiasm for writing good documentation and tests alongside your code.
  • Ability to work independently in a fully remote project.
  • Experience with open source development workflows on GitHub.
  • Familiarity with Wikibase and OpenRefine as a user.

How to respond

Please send your resume or CV, sample of your relevant previous work, and a short letter of interest to We will schedule an interview with short-listed candidates. Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis, with an aim to fill the position by July 30.

OpenRefine is fiscally sponsored by Code for Science and Society (CS&S). CS&S is an equal opportunity employer committed to hiring a diverse workforce at all levels of the organization thereby creating a culture that allows us to better serve our clientele, our employees and our communities. We value and encourage the contributions of our colleagues and strive to create an environment where everyone can reach their full potential and drive outstanding results. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, national origin, age, sex, religion, disability, sexual orientation, marital status, veteran status, gender identity or expression, or any other basis protected by local, state, or federal law. This policy applies with regard to all aspects of one’s employment, including hiring, transfer, promotion, compensation, eligibility for benefits, and termination.