The Natural Capital Project, Stanford Woods Institute for the Environment Job Family: Research
Job Series: Life Science Research Professional
Job Code: 4952 Grade: G
The Natural Capital Project (NatCap) is a partnership among Stanford University's Woods Institute for the Environment, University of Minnesota's Institute on the Environment, The Nature Conservancy, the World Wildlife Fund, and the Chinese Academy of Sciences. We develop tools to model and map the distribution of biodiversity and the flow of multiple ecosystem services (ES) across land- and seascapes. We seek a creative, collaborative, and talented data scientist to advance the use of new data technologies and remote sensing in our coastal and marine ES models. We strive to adapt ES tools and approaches to further incorporate new data technologies that are becoming available at increasingly fine resolutions, broad extents, and greater frequencies in order to improve indicators of ecosystem condition, shoreline change, impacts to infrastructure from coastal storms, human use, and other characteristics of coastal systems within our models. We advance this work as part of multiple projects in the Caribbean and Latin America to incorporate innovative technology into Integrated Coastal Zone Management and increase climate resilience for coastal communities and marine protected areas.
The data scientist will identify and review new data sources such as satellite imagery, drone imagery, and social media; perform routine spatial data analyses and derive new products where necessary; test these products against historical data sources and observed data; create and maintain spatial databases of new data inputs to ES models; and contribute maps, graphics and text for reports summarizing methods and major findings. The specialist will work independently and as part of a highly collaborative team. This position requires excellent organizational, communication, and independent research skills, as well as an aptitude for teamwork and collaboration. The position may also include travel to study regions 3-4 times per year to interface with local partners, stakeholders, researchers, and students. Please note this position is based in our Seattle Washington office and is fixed-term for 12 months with a possibility of reappointment based on programmatic needs and funding availability. JOB PURPOSE: Perform more complex functions and activities involved in defined research projects, and independently conduct a portion of the research project(s). CORE DUTIES*:
Independently conduct a portion of the research project(s). Make recommendations on experimental design and/or research direction to principal investigator.
Identify and review innovative data sources, technologies, and approaches in coastal and marine areas including satellite imagery, drone-based aerial imagery, social media, and others.
Advise on new data technologies most appropriate for habitat, geomorphic, and infrastructure assessment as well as for social and economic information for use in current or modified InVEST models.
Independently conduct complex (lab and/or field) experiments to gather data for a portion of a major research project.
Compile geographic data from a variety of sources including censuses, field observations, GPS, satellite imagery, aerial photographs, social media, Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR) and existing maps.
Identify, assess, and display geographic relationships among varying types of data.
Interpret and analyze results, often where few guidelines exist, and make modifications to existing procedures and protocols.
Analyze and integrate spatial data for geographic statistics to incorporate into presentations, documents and reports, and training material.
Develop new research protocols where appropriate protocols are not described in the literature or where modification or adaptation of standard procedures and protocols is required.
Develop and maintain geospatial databases. Conduct research to locate and obtain existing databases. Correct data to ensure highest degree of accuracy.
Create new data products using GIS and related software (such as python, including pygeoprocessing that underlies our flagship InVEST software).
Modify, create, and test software scripts for automating the creation of data products including but not limited to algorithms for habitat and shoreline classification.
Participate in multidisciplinary teams across different faculties or schools.
Work with team members and partners to identify data needs.
Collaborate with team members, join team and project calls, participate in project planning, and contribute to project deliverables.
Perform ongoing literature review to remain current with new procedures and related research; apply to ongoing research and development of new protocols.
Contribute substantively to the preparation of papers for publication, especially in the results section, and to publication of findings. Present ongoing work to colleagues and/or academic conferences.
Oversee supply and equipment budget under supervision of principal investigator or business manager.
Work with health and safety department to ensure lab complies with regulations and all required trainings.
Supervise (either formally or informally) staff or students as needed, including oversight and direction on techniques, as well as consultation on project work. Serve as a technical resource for other research staff.
Oversee the daily activities of the laboratory including lab maintenance; maintain lab stock, manage chemical inventory and safety records, and provide general lab support as needed. May assist with purchasing laboratory equipment.
* - Other duties may also be assigned
Other duties include:
Assess the key data technologies already in use in the focal countries and barriers and opportunities for integrating new data technologies for coastal planning and natural capital assessment into practice within local and regional government agencies and NGOs.
Assist with planning capacity building workshops and trainings and outreach materials that highlight remote sensing and other data technologies for natural capital assessment.
In collaboration with local partners, help to identify pathways for the project to continue building awareness and capacity to incorporate new data technologies and ecosystem service valuation into practice, identifying capacity and resource needs for these tools to be incorporated into future decision-making.
MINIMUM REQUIREMENTS:Education & Experience: Bachelor's degree in related scientific field and two years of relevant work experience; or Master's degree in a related scientific field. Preference is for an MS degree in Geography, Computational or Environmental Science with focus on Geographic Information Systems (GIS), new data technologies, and applications to conservation, development, or natural resource economics. Knowledge, Skills and Abilities:
Comprehensive understanding of scientific principles.
General computer skills and ability to quickly learn and master computer programs, databases, and scientific applications.
Strong analytical skills and excellent judgment.
Ability to maintain detailed records of experiments and outcomes.
Ability to work under deadlines with general guidance is essential.
Excellent organizational skills and demonstrated ability to accurately complete detailed work.
(You may add to this list)
Extensive knowledge of satellite sensors and remote-sensing products, and ability to make connections to those most suitable for use in ES modeling.
Working knowledge of relevant GIS software and scripting languages
Certifications and Licenses: None PHYSICAL REQUIREMENTS*:
Frequently stand, walk, twist, bend, stoop, squat, grasp lightly, use fine manipulation, grasp forcefully, perform desk-based computer tasks, use telephone, write by hand, lift, carry, push and pull objects weighing over 40 pounds.
Occasionally sit, kneel, crawl, reach and work above shoulders, sort and file paperwork or parts.
Rarely climb, scrub, sweep, mop, chop and mix or operate hand and foot controls.
Must have correctible vision to perform duties of the job.
Ability to bend, squat, kneel, stand, reach above shoulder level, and move on hard surfaces for up to eight hours.
Ability to lift heavy objects weighing up to 50 pounds.
Ability to work in a dusty, dirty, and odorous environment.
Position may require repetitive motion.
* - Consistent with its obligations under the law, the University will provide reasonable accommodation to any employee with a disability who requires accommodation to perform the essential functions of the job. WORKING CONDITIONS:
May require working in close proximity to blood borne pathogens.
May require work in an environment where animals are used for teaching and research.
Position may at times require the employee to work with or be in areas where hazardous materials and/or infectious diseases are present.
Employee must perform tasks that require the use of personal protective equipment, such as safety glasses and shoes, protective clothing and gloves, and possibly a respirator.
May require extended or unusual work hours based on research requirements and business needs.
Interpersonal Skills: Demonstrates the ability to work well with Stanford colleagues and clients and with external organizations.
Promote Culture of Safety: Demonstrates commitment to personal responsibility and value for safety; communicates safety concerns; uses and promotes safe behaviors based on training and lessons learned.
Subject to and expected to comply with all applicable University policies and procedures, including but not limited to the personnel policies and other policies found in the University's Administrative Guide, http://adminguide.stanford.edu.
The Natural Capital Project is operationally housed in the Stanford Woods Institute for the Environment and is based at Stanford University.
We offer a competitive salary and benefits package, depending on experience and qualifications. be considered, applicants will provide a cover letter and resume.
Stanford is an equal opportunity employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law. All final candidates are subject to a background check.
Location: Dean of Research, California, United States Schedule: Classification Level:
Stanford is an equal opportunity employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law.
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