DeepChem is a Decentralized Research Group

I thought it would be useful for me to make a note about the purposes of the DeepChem community and what DeepChem is/is-not. DeepChem is a decentralized research group. That means it functions a lot like a PI’s research group at a university except that it is located online rather than at a physical institution. You can think of this as the “Ramsundar Lab” in some sense since that’s what it would be if I worked at a university.

This means in particular that DeepChem is different from other desci research initiatives. In particular, I need to sign off explicitly on new initiatives and efforts for much the same reason that for the “John Doe Lab” at “X University” it would be required for “Dr. Doe” to sign off on initiatives. DeepChem development is supported by various governmental and other grants, and I need (among other reasons) to make sure initiatives fit in with requirements of grants. For this reason, it would not be appropriate for a community member to launch a “DeepChem” initiative without my explicit OK and signoff.

This isn’t to say that community initiatives are not welcome! I very much encourage community members to take initiative and start new subprojects, but please come by office hours and explicitly discuss with me first. If you can’t make it to office hours, just send a message to me on DM and I’m happy to talk through it. DeepChem is an experiment to see if a scientific research group can exist that isn’t tied to a university, and I am happy to clarify or discuss any questions you may have.

If you have additional questions, please come by office hours and I would be happy to chat with you!

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