Earth Observation Data Scientist

Lancaster University

Bailrigg, Lancaster UK

Application Deadline
£31,396 to £44,263

Salary: £31,396 to £44,263

Hours: Full time

Contract Length: 4 years, with opportunities to extend further subject to funding continuation.

About us

We perform world-leading research into the impacts of climate change upon the polar regions. We specialise in the use of satellite data for tracking Earth’s rapidly changing polar ice sheets, and are passionate about delivering innovative information and datasets to a broad range of scientific and public sector stakeholders. With an international reputation for developing new satellite missions, algorithms and datasets, we work closely with multiple national and international partners, including the European Space Agency.

Specifically, our work aims to use satellite data to quantify and understand the contribution that the Greenland and Antarctic Ice Sheets make to sea level rise, under our changing climate; pushing the technical boundaries of polar observation from space. Working in Lancaster, you will join a rapidly-growing, ambitious and motivated group, with the bonus of fantastic areas of natural beauty such as the Lake District on your doorstep.

Here are some tasters of our work and its impact:

About you

We are looking for an Earth Observation Data Scientist with a scientific degree or equivalent experience, who is passionate about tackling the pressing challenges of climate change. Relevant industry experience or a postgraduate qualification is desirable, but not essential. You will work on a range of national and international projects, supporting our core business of developing and analysing satellite datasets. Your day-to-day tasks will be wide-ranging, including data analysis and visualisation, system design and algorithm implementation, and contributing to scientific research. You should have a keen interest in problem solving and the desire to work collaboratively as part of a broader team. An interest in Earth Observation and Spatial Analysis with Python is desirable, alongside the ability to work proactively on a wide range of projects.


We are a dynamic and rapidly-growing team and so you will have the opportunity to be involved in many different aspects of our activities, including system design, data engineering, algorithm development and implementation, and dataset analysis and production. It’s genuinely exciting and rewarding work; with the opportunity to influence the direction and impact of our group within an international setting. The core responsibilities of the role are:

  • To develop and implement Python-based tools for advanced satellite data analysis and visualisation.
  • To contribute to scientific research that is focused upon the impacts of climate change in Polar regions.
  • To work closely with members of the Polar Research group in Lancaster, to support code development and to integrate prototype algorithms into our broader processing ecosystem.
  • To undertake analysis, testing and validation of new satellite datasets and products, including those from future satellite missions as they become operational.
  • To contribute to technical reports and documentation.
  • To participate and present at relevant national and international project meetings, including those with the European Space Agency.

What does it mean to work with us?

  • You will be working on projects that make a difference; developing methods and datasets that aim to better understand the contribution that ice sheets make to sea level rise.
  • We are a dynamic and rapidly-growing team with a range of different backgrounds, who really enjoy learning from each other. This is an exciting time to join us, with the opportunity to help shape our future work and to make a real impact on the international agenda.
  • You will have the opportunity to collaborate with a broader network of scientific and technical staff from across the UK.
  • We care about the environment, and all our projects and research is focused on understanding the impacts of climate change on our planet. If you share this outlook, you’ll enjoy working with us.
  • We are constantly exploring and discussing new scientific and research opportunities as a team.
  • Through our interactions with national and international bodies, we aim to influence the national and international climate change agenda.

This is a full time post, anticipated to start in May 2024, or at a mutually agreed date, and expected to finish in April 2028.

Informal enquiries are welcome, please contact Mal McMillan;

Further details relating to the advertised position and application procedure please click the apply button.

Closing Date: Sunday 21 April 2024

Interview Date: Tuesday 07 May 2024

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