Senior Digital Engineer – Join the Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum!

Cooper Hewitt’s Digital and Emerging Media Department is responsible for the production, implementation, and management of all public facing digital products that represent the museum and give visitors a first-in-class experience at the museum, at home, or on the go. This includes the museum website, in-gallery digital experiences, and the online collection.

The Senior Digital Engineer independently serves in a senior key technical role that reports directly to the Director Digital and Emerging Media. The Senior Digital Engineer is independently responsible for technical design, build, implementation and maintenance of innovative applications for web, mobile, and in-gallery interactive experiences.

Senior developer and technical architect for public facing and internal digital initiatives (online, mobile, interactive): Overall responsible for the implementation, designing, developing, maintaining innovative and complex applications to ensure the museum meets its mission and performance targets. Prototypes and delivers complex cultural heritage dataset visualization, search and discovery applications Implements design modifications and ensure compliance with open standards and best practices. Provides technical leadership to optimize web servers and ensures scalability of databases. Monitors and make improvements to the museum’s existing digital services. Configures and optimizes the museum’s digital environment.

Develop, create and implement application optimization including server maintenance
Designs and develops information architecture and user experience for complex online and mobile applications. Ensures that the delivery systems are compliant with SI standards. Works closely with the CHSDM IT team and SI Web Services Division to maintain the Web servers, internal and external. Develops and maintains application specific data structures, metadata schemas, and linked data endpoints. Effectively trouble-shoots technical problems related to applications.

Creative Technical Research/Planning and Management
Serves as CHSDM liaison on complex technical matters concerning desktop, and mobile web applications. Coordinates the efforts of other CHSDM staff to deliver seamless cross-collection, modes of browsing and serendipitous discovery, and educational content. Researches appropriate technical and organizational methods of content delivery and presentation that will enhance public access and deepen engagement with the museum’s knowledge and expertise. Advises other CHSDM departments on web and mobile applications, metadata and collection ontologies. Writes complex technical documentation and specifications for internal and external contractors.

External Activities
Actively participates on SI and CHSDM committees related to digital technologies and represents CHSDM interests and projects. Works closely with the SI Webmaster and Web asters from other SI museums, private museums, federal agencies and cultural organizations to discuss issues and concerns related to application development and maintenance. Attends and presents at Web-related conferences and technology work groups to keep up with trends in digital technology. Seeks out new opportunities for digital projects consonant with the goals and priorities of CHSDM by reading and contributing to electronic and print publications, attending meetings, and conferences, and developing contacts in appropriate communities outside the Museum.

1. Exceptional programming skills and significant commercial experience developing highly scalable internet applications using PHP, Python, JavaScript.
2. Exceptional experience designing and administering highly scalable internet servers using Apache, MySQL, PostgreSQL.
3. Proven understanding and application of modern technologies, mobile application design and development using JavaScript frameworks.
4. Understanding of the complex needs of diverse users of digital technologies and methodologies for user research.
5. Understanding of data visualization tools and methodologies.
6. Understanding of cultural heritage datasets.
7. Ability to serve as an advisor and technical authority on matters relating to planning, designing, developing and implementing a Web site with educational content regarding contemporary and modern design (or equivalent).
8. Ability to produce, design and write code for multi-page websites.
9. Ability to hand code in the most current version of HTML and CSS, as well as proficiency with JavaScript frameworks, and to utilize other network oriented applications.
10. Ability to produce, design and write code for multi-page websites, from conception to launch.
11. Ability to hand code in the most current version of HTML and CSS, as well as proficiency with JavaScript frameworks, Python, Django and to utilize other network oriented applications.
12. Knowledge of cross-platform, digital formats for text, images, video and audio and database management is required in order to develop and monitor metrics used in evaluating the accomplishment of web development goals and objectives. Applicant has experience designing websites for desktop and mobile web browsing, knowledge of PHP, WordPress, Django, Python, JavaScript, HTML/CSS, Unix operating systems, as well as Microsoft and Apache server environments.
13. Ability to design, develop and produce multimedia Web sites, with the knowledge of web best practices such as intuitive user experience, accessibility, media optimization, content relevance, and copyright issues.
14. Knowledge of the following databases: MySQL PostgreSQL; and knowledge of the following operating systems: Windows and Mac in order to participate in enhancements for the museum’s website.
15. Knowledge of productivity and authoring software, such as MS Office, Adobe Photoshop, and Illustrator, is essential in order to directly develop and create website enhancements.
16. Ability to serve as an advisor and technical authority on matters relating to planning, designing, developing and implementing a Web site with educational content.
17. Ability to communicate so information and advisory services are consistent, credible and salient so that the immediate team, Department, and Museum functions at it’s best.
18. Ability to establish productive/collaborative relationships with internal and external partners to produce work of a high quality while under tight deadlines.
19. Ability to take initiative and ownership of project for assignments and responsibilities.
20. Skill at organizing work so that deadlines are met or exceeded.

SALARY: Highly Competitive


TIAA-CREF (Defined Contributions – 12 percent)
Free Life Insurance
Voluntary Accidental Death & Dismemberment Insurance
Long Term Disability
Health Insurance (Blue Cross Blue Shield)
Dental (Delta Dental)
Vision (Vision Services)
Flexible Spending Accounts
Free Transit/Commuter Benefits (up to $3,180 commuter costs paid per year)
Annual Leave (13 days) increasing after 3 years (20 days)
Sick Leave (13 days)
Federal Holidays (10 days)
Family Friendly Leave Family Friendly Workplace
Telework Policy
Historic Carnegie mansion and landmark offices
Arthur Ross Terrace and Garden
92Y Fitness Center
Free Entrance to Museums and Galleries
Design Library
Employee Assistance Program
Smithsonian Network
Tarallucci e Vino (Museum Cafe) Discount
Museum Shop Discount
General Employee Discounts


Please submit cover letter and resume (addressing qualification requirements) to Subject Line: Senior Digital Engineer

Application deadline is: Open until filled