Research Assistant/Associate in Geospatial Informatics

Requisition ID: 442
Location: Newcastle, GB
Contract Type: Fixed Term
Posted Date: 10-Oct-2019
Salary: £28,331.00 - £32,817.00
Closing Date: 9 November 2019

We are a world class research-intensive university. We deliver teaching and learning of the highest quality. We play a leading role in economic, social and cultural development of the North East of England. Attracting and retaining high-calibre people is fundamental to our continued success.

The role

We are seeking a dynamic researcher to implement an integrated spatial decision support / visualisation platform and develop a parallel research programme in geospatial analytics. You will work with an interdisciplinary group in the UKRI GCRF Water Security and Sustainable Development Hub, bringing geospatial analytics expertise to help address the intractable challenge of global water security and manage the Hub’s heterogeneous data streams. The ideal candidate will hold a PhD in a relevant subject, have strong software engineering skills and experience in the development of geospatial data analysis and visualisation software system solutions.

You will be based in the School of Engineering, working alongside other Hub researchers and having access to a wider team of spatial data management, big data and cloud computing, geospatial and modelling experts within the university. The post affords ample exciting travel opportunities, with Hub partners in the UK, Colombia, Ethiopia, India, and Malaysia.

This 36 month, fixed-term post, based in the UKRI GCRF Water Security and Sustainable Development Hub, will develop an integrated geospatial decision-support, and visualisation platform, and a parallel research programme in geospatial analytics. You will have strong software engineering skills with experience in the development of geospatial data management, analysis, and visualisation. Experience with Virtual Reality (VR), Augmented Reality (AR) and / or the use of gaming technology for visualisation purposes would be beneficial.

Global water security – ensuring a reliable and acceptable quantity and quality of water, and managing water-related risks for all – is foundational to sustainable development. Water is essential for human life, but also necessary for food and energy security, health and well-being, and prosperous economies. Some 80% of the world's population live in areas with threats to water security. Between 1990-2015 more than 1.6m people died, and 5.5bn people were affected by water disasters, causing direct damages of US$2.5tn; whilst some 61% of the global population still do not have access to improved basic sanitation and 28% do not have safe drinking water, resulting in over half a million deaths per year due to waterborne disease.

To address these challenges, we have brought together researchers from across the university’s three faculties, as well as partner universities Leeds and Oxford and collaboratories in Colombia, Ethiopia, India and Malaysia in the £17.7m Water Security Hub. Our research extends from developing low cost sanitation systems to improve water and environmental quality, including water quality sensors, especially for the poorest and most vulnerable communities to analysing regulations and governance structures, and to the social and cultural significance of water. We aspire to pioneer biological, environmental and digital technologies for global application, bringing the water sector into the 4th industrial revolution.

As part of our commitment to career development for research staff, the University has developed 3 levels of research role profiles. These profiles set out firstly the generic competences and responsibilities expected of role holders at each level and secondly the general qualifications and experiences needed for entry at a particular level.

As part of our commitment to career development for research staff, the University has developed 3 levels of research role profiles. These profiles set out firstly the generic competences and responsibilities expected of role holders at each level and secondly the general qualifications and experiences needed for entry at a particular level.

The School holds a bronze Athena SWAN award in addition to the University’s silver award in recognition of our good employment practices for the advancement of gender equality. The University also holds the HR Excellence in Research award for our work to support the career development of our researchers, and is a member of the Euraxess initiative supporting researchers in Europe.

Please be advised that due to the minimum salary thresholds imposed by the UKVI, this post may not qualify for University sponsorship under Tier 2 of the points based system.

The post is available fixed term for three years in the first instance.

For informal enquiries please contact Professor Jon Mills (jon.mills@ncl.ac.uk)

https://www.ncl.ac.uk/engineering/
https://www.ncl.ac.uk/engineering/research/civil/geomatics/
https://www.ncl.ac.uk/globalchallenges/water/water-security-hub/

Key Accountabilities

  • Implement an appropriate geospatial decision support analytics and visualisation platform to integrate heterogeneous data across the UKRI GCRF Water Security and Sustainable Development Hub.
  • Engage with Hub partners from academia, communities, industry and government, in the UK, Colombia, Ethiopia, India, and Malaysia, to develop a research programme in geospatial analytics (e.g. spatial analysis and network modelling to identify / generate synthetic drainage or sanitation infrastructure scenarios; analysis of Earth observation data to support flood risk mapping) to help address the intractable challenge of global water security and sustainability.
  • Provide direction and expertise across the Hub on the development and application of appropriate decision support analytics and visualisation tools.
  • Liaise with the Geospatial, Water Resources, Environmental Engineering and Computing groups, as well as related initiatives at Newcastle (e.g. DAFNI; Alan Turing Institute Urban Analytics programme), to ensure the implentation of best practice in geospatial analytics research and wider data management across the Hub.
  • Actively disseminate research outcomes, including preparation of manuscripts for high quality journals, delivery of poster and oral presentations at international conferences.

The Person (Essential)

Knowledge, Skills and Experience

  • Experience of developing, setting-up and running integrated software solutions - Essential
  • Good data analytical skills, with the ability to work methodically and accurately in designing, executing and writing up research independently - Essential
  • Experience of collaborative or consortium working with academic and stakeholder partners - Desirable
  • A developing track record of peer reviewed publications in internationally recognised journals and experience of presentation of work to the national/international research community - Desirable
  • Knowledge of innovative ways of presenting research outputs - Desirable

Attributes and Behaviour

  • Excellent communication skills, both written and verbal; ability and willingness to communicate your research at national and international conferences, to fellow academics in other disciplines and to stakeholders - Essential
  • Excellent interpersonal skills to build trust with collaborating groups - Essential
  • The ability to work well both independently and as part of a team - Essential
  • Good planning, organisational and time management skills - Essential
  • Willingness to travel, potentially for extended periods, including to Hub collaboratory destinations (Colombia, Ethiopia, India, Malaysia) - Desirable

Qualifications

  • A good Bachelor’s or Master’s degree in a relevant subject e.g. Computer Science, Engineering, Geomatics, Mathematics. – Essential
  • PhD (or close to completion, or equivalent experience) in spatial data science, decision support, visualisation, VR/AR or gaming technology – Essential

Newcastle University is committed to being a fully inclusive Global University which actively recruits, supports and retains staff from all sectors of society. We value diversity as well as celebrate, support and thrive on the contributions of all our employees and the communities they represent. We are proud to be an equal opportunities employer and encourage applications from everybody, regardless of race, sex, ethnicity, religion, nationality, sexual orientation, age, disability, gender identity, marital status/civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity, as well as being open to flexible working practices.

Requisition ID: 442

posted: 23 October 2019     Please mention EARTHWORKS when responding to this advertisement.