The UK Polar Data Centre (UK PDC) is the focal point for Arctic and Antarctic environmental data management in the UK. Part of the Natural Environmental Research Council’s (NERC) network of environmental data centres, and based at the British Antarctic Survey (BAS), it coordinates the management of polar data from UK-funded research and supports researchers in complying with national and international data legislation and policy. The UK PDC has a vacancy for a scientific data manager based at the British Antarctic Survey offices on the outskirts of Cambridge.

This data manager will be responsible for the management the Polar Data Centre’s diverse range of geophysical data including multi and single-beam bathymetry, seismic, magnetic, gravity and radar data.

The successful candidate will have experience of data management, ideally in a geophysics related context. You will need a good range of general IT skills such as Unix/Linux experience, programming skills and database design. In addition, you will have experience using a variety of relevant software packages for managing/processing data, Geographic Information Systems or web application development. The role requires excellent attention to detail and strong communication and team working skills. You will be expected to document your progress and engage successfully with a wide range of scientists and other stake-holders.

This is a very diverse role which will allow you be involved in all aspects of the data life cycle from planning and acquisition through to analysis and dissemination. There are many opportunities to improve the management of the geophysical data holdings of the Polar Data Centre and this role would suit someone with creative ideas and the initiative and skills to drive them forward.

The post is primarily based in Cambridge but there is likely to be the opportunity to support data acquisition and data management on research cruises. Therefore, you should be physically capable and medically fit to undertake marine cruises in polar regions of up to two months duration.


To manage scientific data collected by the UK polar community with an emphasis on marine, terrestrial and aero geophysical datasets. In this sense ’manage’ means a series of steps including planning, acquisition and processing through to reviewing and archiving and onto analysis and dissemination.


Degree or higher in a geoscience or data management subject area.


1. Manage marine, terrestrial and aero geophysical data. Tasks within this duty include data planning, acquisition, processing, archiving, analysis and dissemination. Datasets include multi and single-beam bathymetry, seismic, magnetic, gravity and radar data.

2. Act as the lead data manager for the Geology and Geophysics and the Palaeo Environments, Ice Sheets and Climate Change science teams within BAS. Ensure all relevant projects have an active data management plan and support and advise scientists on data management activities

3. Act as the designated data manager for NERC grant-funded projects with a polar geophysics focus where the PDC is named as either the primary or secondary data centre.

4. Respond to internal and external requests for data, information and knowledge that have a polar geoscience focus.

5. Support scientific data acquisition on marine cruises. This will primarily involve marine geophysics but will also encompass aspects of marine biology, marine geology and oceanography and other datasets as appropriate. Assist in the cruise planning stage to maximise opportunistic data acquisition. This post may support aero geophysical data acquisition in the future.

6. Produce and contribute towards internal reports and documentation such as scientific cruise reports.

7. Act as the main point of contact for the data sharing agreement between BAS and the UK Hydrographic Office.

8. Contribute towards and in some cases produce scientific research output including peer-reviewed literature, maps and digital products such as a GIS or a web service. As an example, a recent project involved the creation of a new tectonic map of the Scotia Sea.

9. Co-operate with and provide data to national and international data assimilation projects. Examples include the Antarctic Digital Marine Anomaly Project and the International Bathymetric Chart of the Southern Ocean both run under the auspices of the Scientific Committee on Antarctic Research.

10. As part of the Polar Data Centre team you will work within functional areas to develop common data management approaches across the scientific disciplines studied at BAS. These areas include data science, database and software development, web applications and data policy. It will be expected that you will possess skills to lead in some of these areas. You will also need to become familiar with data management of other disciplines to help provide resilience within the team.

11. Engage in public outreach activities where show-casing polar scientific data.

12. Any other duties appropriate to banding and skill set as required by the Director

On-line application forms and further information are available on our website at www.bas.ac.uk/vacancies.

These are also available from the Human Resources Section, British Antarctic Survey, High Cross, Madingley Road, Cambridge, CB3 0ET. Tel: (01223) 221508.

Please quote reference: BAS 48/18

Closing date for receipt of application forms is: 13th May 2018
Interview date: 4th June 2018
Proposed start date: ASAP

Salary: Starting from £30,357 per annum

We welcome applications from all sections of the community. People from ethnic minorities and disabled people are currently under-represented and their applications are particularly welcome. We operate a guaranteed interview scheme for disabled candidates who meet the minimum criteria for the job role.

From April 2018, the British Antarctic Survey, a component part of the Natural Environment Research Council, will be part of UK Research and Innovation. UK Research and Innovation will bring together the seven Research Councils, Innovate UK and a new organisation, Research England. The vision for the new organisation is to be the best research and innovation organisation in the world. More information can be found online at http://www.ukri.org. From April 2018, you will be employed by UK Research and Innovation.

Job reference:BAS 48/18

  • Contract type:Full Time
  • Duration:Open-Ended Appointment
  • Salary:In the range of £28,200 to £30,600 per annum.
  • Benefits:We offer generous benefits
  • Team:Polar Data Centre
  • Location:Cambridge
  • Closing date:13 May, 2018 11:59 pm