Marine Data Specialist

Post title: Marine Data Specialist
Ref No: 2016/32
Grade: H
Type of appointment: Permanent
Location: Peterborough
Team: Marine Evidence
Closing date: 09:00 on 17 October 2016 (The anticipated interview date is 08 November 2016)

Post background
Access to good evidence to underpin biodiversity and nature conservation advice has become increasingly important as the demands and pressures on the environment rise. Evidence activities relating to biodiversity and nature conservation, such as data collection, dissemination, analysis, and reporting, are all critical elements of JNCC’s core functions.

Post Duties
The post holder will work with other members of the Marine Evidence Team and the Data Services Team to deliver robust evidence to support JNCC’s nature conservation advice. The work of the Marine Evidence Team is cross-cutting and the post holder will act as a key liaison between this team and a pool of data specialists and analysts from across JNCC with regards to marine data.
The Marine Data Specialist will undertake a range of duties such as (but not limited to):
Overall responsibility for identifying issues with marine data holdings, both existing as well as new data being received by JNCC (particularly offshore seabed survey data); and creating novel and efficient solutions to any issues identified.
Transforming marine data that JNCC holds, including the establishment of efficient processing chains (e.g. within FME, R), and ensuring data are placed in suitable repositories.
Ensuring marine data holdings are adequately described and the data stored in standard/agreed formats; where necessary leading a cultural change.
Supporting the marine teams as JNCC moves to OpenSource software in several areas (e.g. GIS), and responds to the Open Data strategies of governments.
Providing support and advice to staff on marine data management and manipulation, including contributing, with analysts and other data specialists, to building data skills across the organisation in accordance with JNCC’s data skills framework (
Maintaining a good overview of JNCC’s marine data holdings including spotting opportunities for how these can be best used in our work, and provide advice to internal and external customers on their use.
Enabling the external publication of the marine data holdings including archival within the MEDIN Data Archiving Centres as required. This will also include coordinating the delivery of seabed evidence report publications.
Commissioning and managing contracts under the Marine Evidence Programme as and when required.
The majority of the work will be office-based; however, the post-holder will also be required to attend meetings and workshops in UK and possibly Europe, which is likely to involve staying away from home on occasion overnight or for up to a week’s duration. There may also be opportunities to participate in field surveys at sea (for up to several weeks at a time).

Specialist and Technical
Degree or equivalent qualification and relevant recent practical work experience that provides the following essential knowledge and experience:
Ability to manage complex and large data sets, create metadata and audit trails, version control, establish processes/rules for changing and archiving them, and understand the principles of licensing.
Ability to design and use relational databases, especially to write SQL queries to manipulate and extract data from large and complex datasets (preferably with experience using PostgreSQL).
Ability to use GIS packages, including manipulation, interpretation and mapping of datasets and spatial databases; and automation of functions and establishing links to databases.
Ability to use R or a similar scripting language to manipulate data and automate processes.
Additional skills and experience that would be desirable to the posts are:
Knowledge of the types of data available from environmental surveys, including remote-sensing and in-situ sampling.
Making effective decisions –
Identify a range of relevant and credible information sources and recognise the need to collect new data when necessary from internal and external sources. (Essential)
Recognise patterns and trends in a wide range of evidence/data and draw key conclusions. (Essential)
Invite challenge and where appropriate involve others in decision making to help build engagement and present robust recommendations. (Desirable)
Leading and communicating –
Communicate using appropriate styles, methods and timing, including digital channels, to maximise understanding and impact. (Essential)
Collaborating and Partnering –
Establish relationships with a range of stakeholders to support delivery of business outcomes. (Essential)
Encourage collaborative team working within own team and across the Department. (Desirable)
Building Capability for All –
Identify and address team or individual capability requirements and gaps to deliver current and future work. (Essential)
Delivering at Pace –
Show a positive approach in keeping their own and the team’s efforts focused on the goals that really matter. (Essential)
Managing a Quality Service –
Establish mechanisms to seek out and respond to feedback from customers about service provided. (Essential)


Hours of work
Normal hours of work for the post are 36 hours per week over a 5-day period, Monday to Friday. Flexi time is available

Annual Leave Entitlement
The annual leave allowance is 25 days per year, rising to 30 days per year after 5 years service. There are also 12 days public and privilege leave. Staff appointed on a part time basis will receive this pro rata.

The closing date for this post is 09:00 on 17 October 2016

The anticipated interview date is 08 November 2016

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