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Environmental Data Scientist I

Battelle Memorial Institute
Boulder, CO
Closing date
Sep 20, 2023

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Science, Mathematics and Statistics
Organization Type
Battelle delivers when others can't. We conduct research and development, manage national laboratories, design and manufacture products and deliver critical services for our clients-whether they are a multi-national corporation, a small start-up or a government agency.

We recognize and appreciate the value and contributions of individuals with diverse backgrounds and experiences and welcome all qualified individuals to apply.

Company Overview

Battelle manages and operates the National Ecological Observatory Network (NEON) program, which is solely funded by the National Science Foundation. A 30+ year project dedicated to understanding how changes in climate, land use and invasive species impact ecology, the observatory's scientists and engineers are collecting a comprehensive range of ecological data on a continental scale across 20 eco-climatic domains representing US ecosystems. Our teams use cutting-edge technology, including an airborne observation platform that captures images of regional landscapes and vegetation; mobile, relocatable, and fixed data collection sites with automated ground sensors to monitor soil and atmosphere; and trained field crews who observe and sample populations of diverse organisms and collect soil and water data. Once structures are completed, a leading-edge cyberinfrastructure will calibrate, store and publish this information. The Observatory includes more than 500+ personnel and is the first of its kind designed to detect and enable forecasting of ecological change at continental scales.

Job Summary

We are currently seeking an Environmental Data Scientist I to join the NEON Observation System (OS) Science team. The location for this position may be remote or in Boulder, CO .

The Environmental Data Scientist I will be part of the NEON Science team that is responsible for operating, maintaining, and ensuring the success of a national program to generate >180 data products from 81 sites throughout the US for over 30 years. The Science team develops, maintains, and improves field and lab protocols, derives data processing and data QAQC algorithms, develops and maintains data analysis pipelines, works with external analytical laboratory partners, and collaborates with NEON Cyberinfrastructure software engineers to produce and publish high quality data products for the research, education, and decision-making communities.

As a member of the Science team, the incumbent will support the Observation Systems (OS) data quality program, including monitoring, investigating, tracking, and resolving data quality issues across the diverse suite of 76 OS terrestrial and aquatic data products. Support entails:
  • Maintenance, development, and testing of mobile data entry applications written in JavaScript.
  • Maintenance, development, and testing of automated systems to execute quality assessment routines.
  • Working with the data quality team lead and other Science team stakeholders to create, maintain, and test existing data quality and interactive data visualization and exploration tools (e.g., R/Shiny).
  • Ongoing QC, editing, and publication of one or more suites of related OS data products.

Additionally, the incumbent will support human-in-the-loop investigation of discovered OS data quality issues, as well as data ingest management responsibilities. This position will involve collaboration with other data scientists and subject matter experts on the Science team, Cyberinfrastructure and Systems Administration staff, and Field Scientists from across the Observatory.

  • Maintain and improve mobile data entry applications coded in JavaScript and built on the Fulcrum platform in collaboration with subject matter experts on the Science and Field Science teams.
  • Contribute to the design, development, and testing of new software to enhance both operational efficiency and resulting data quality.
  • Maintain and enhance existing data quality tools (e.g., R/Shiny applications) in collaboration with subject matter experts and other NEON stakeholders.
  • Develop, test, document, and implement algorithms used in data processing and QA/QC (typically written in R).
  • Develop documentation and support training of staff on use of various data quality tools.
  • Manage, track, and resolve incoming data issues for OS data products as needed.
  • Perform QC, make data edits, and resolve data issues for OS data products associated with the annual data product release.
  • Contribute to other NEON project deliverables as needed.
  • Follow NEON and site specific, environmental protection requirements, policy and procedures.

Key Qualifications
  • Bachelor's degree in a related field or an equivalent combination of education and/or experience in a related field.
  • Experience with data management, and development and implementation of data quality assurance procedures.
  • Demonstrated proficiency with Python, R, JavaScript, or similar object-oriented programming language.
  • Willing to learn and apply new coding languages depending on the task at hand.
  • High-level of attention to detail, organization, and motivation to advance team-oriented projects.
  • Demonstrated communication and problem-solving skills and the ability to determine and act on changing priorities in a fast-paced, dynamic environment.
  • Ability to organize and execute multiple activities and priorities.
  • Ability to work collaboratively in interdisciplinary teams.
  • Experience with open science/reproducible science workflows, including code sharing on platforms such as GitHub.


Pay rate: $75,000 - $80,000 a year

This information reflects the anticipated base salary range for this position based on current national data. Minimums and maximums may vary based on location. Individual pay is based on skills, experience, and other relevant factors.

Benefits: Live an Extraordinary Life

We care about your well-being, not just on the job. Battelle offers comprehensive and competitive benefits to help you live your best life.
  • Take time to recharge : You get paid time off to support work-life balance and keep motivated.
  • Prioritize wellness : Stay healthy with medical, dental, and vision coverage with wellness incentives and benefits plus a variety of optional supplemental benefits.
  • Better together : Coverage for partners, gender-affirming care and health support, and family formation support.
  • Build your financial future : Build financial stability with an industry-leading 401(k) retirement savings plan. For most employees, we put in 5 percent whether you contribute or not, and match your contributions on top of that.
  • Advance your education : Tuition assistance is available to pursue higher education.

A Work Environment Where You Succeed

For brilliant minds in science, technology, engineering and business operations, Battelle is the place to do the greatest good by solving humanity's most pressing challenges and creating a safer, healthier and more secure world.

You will have the opportunity to thrive in a culture that inspires you to:
  • Apply your talent to challenging and meaningful projects
  • Receive select funding to pursue ideas in scientific and technological discovery
  • Collaborate with world-class experts in an inclusive environment
  • Nurture and develop the next generation of scientific leaders
  • Give back to and improve our communities

Vaccinations & Safety Protocols

Battelle may require employees, based on job duties, work location, and/or its clients' requirements to follow certain safety protocols and to be vaccinated against a variety of viruses, bacteria, and diseases as a condition of employment and continued employment and to provide documentation that they are fully vaccinated. If applicable, Battelle will provide reasonable accommodations based on a qualified disability or medical condition through the Americans with Disabilities Act or the Rehabilitation Act or for a sincerely held religious belief under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (and related state laws).

Battelle is an equal opportunity employer. We provide employment and opportunities for advancement, compensation, training, and growth according to individual merit, without regard to race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy), national origin, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, marital status, age, genetic information, disability, veteran-status veteran or military status, or any other characteristic protected under applicable Federal, state, or local law. Our goal is for each staff member to have the opportunity to grow to the limits of their abilities and to achieve personal and organizational objectives. We will support positive programs for equal treatment of all staff and full utilization of all qualified employees at all levels within Battelle.

The above statements are intended to describe the nature and level of work being performed by people assigned to this job. They are not intended to be an exhaustive list of all responsibilities, activities and skills required of staff members. No statement herein is intended to imply any authorities to commit Battelle unless special written permission is granted by Battelle's Legal Department.

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