Battleby, Perthshire, Scotland

Technical Research Assistant - Missing Salmon Alliance

Paul Coulson | February 11th 2020

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The Missing Salmon Alliance is a partnership of the leading non-governmental organisations involved in salmon conservation across the United Kingdom. This is a collaborative partnership to use the individual skills and resources of the partner organisations to more effectively deliver management of the remaining salmon stocks. At the core of this partnership is a statistical framework to conceptualise all of the impacts on salmon during their freshwater and ocean migrations. This is the Likely Suspects Framework for Atlantic salmon.

Cooperatively working with the international salmon science community, the project’s core team arebuilding systems to mobilise data and facilitate new analyses to support current and future salmon management. The Alliance, through the Atlantic Salmon Trust, is looking to appoint a Technical Research Assistant to support this process through the construction and management of databases of biological records and environmental parameters.

Underpinning this Likely Suspects Framework project is the development of suitable infrastructure to organise data and focus research group activity. Source data provided by partner organisations will be standardised and database construction is underway using a Knowledge Graph format with application programming interfaces allowing visual inspection and seamless data submission and retrieval. The technical research assistant will primarily take up an important new role within the LSF core team with duties split between data management, research and communications.

This full-time position is available for a fixed term of 12 months in the first instance, with the possibility of review for extension for a further year.

The Technical Research Assistant will report in the first instance to the Principal Investigator, who will manage the post on behalf of the Atlantic Salmon Trust.

Key duties and responsibilities

This role in the core team will be diverse and will provide a range of opportunities to develop skillsets applicable for a career in scientific research, resource and project management and conservation.

This role will have tasks that are split amongst three main areas and according to a 50:40:10 resourcing model. Assignment and agreement on the specified tasks will be carried out regularly during LSF team meetings and the balance reviewed at regular intervals by the Principal Investigator (PI) .

50% Primary data-related tasks carried out under the instruction and guidance of the LSF data specialist. The requirement is to assist with the technical aspects of construction and development of the LSF database.

40% Science research tasks under the instruction and guidance of PI in support of the delivery of the wider aims and objectives of the LSF programme. These may include undertaking specific research tasks,

Cooperatively working with the international salmon science community, the project’s core team arebuilding systems to mobilise data and facilitate new analyses to support current and future salmon management. The Alliance, through the Atlantic Salmon Trust, is looking to appoint a Technical Research Assistant to support this process through the construction and management of databases of biological records and environmental parameters.

The Technical Research Assistant will report in the first instance to the Principal Investigator, who will manage the post on behalf of the Atlantic Salmon Trust.

assisting with report writing , contributing to the development of peer-reviewed publications and representing the LSF team on occasion.

10% Specified tasks in relation to developing communications and knowledge transfer for the LSF project, and coordinate with wider MSA communications group.

Conditions of Employment

The terms of employment will be detailed in a contract and accompanying staff handbook, along with this job description.

The position described will be a fixed term contract for 12 months, with the possibility of an option to extend. The starting salary will be in the region of £25,000 per annum, plus contribution towards a pension scheme.

The Trust operates a flexible 37.5 hour working week, which will on occasion require working evenings and weekends. Subject to Covid-19 restrictions the main place of work will be at the Atlantic SalmonTrust’s main office at Battleby House nr Perth, Scotland.

It should be noted that the postholder may be required to travel, and work with partners across the UK and further afield.

The Trust also operates a policy of continuous professional development and will help support the development of the career of the postholder.

The following are a set of criteria against which the applications from potential candidates will be appraised.

Knowledge and experience Required

  • MSc or MRes in computational methods, data science, quantitative ecology , mathematics and statistics or related field
  • Demonstrable skills using R, including scripting and version control systems (e.g. GIT)
  • Experience performing data manipulations to integrate data from multiple sources
  • Experience resolving data quality issues
  • Demonstrable skills in science writing and familiarity with peer-review process
  • Demonstrable familiarity with science communication across multiple platforms

Desired

  • An interest in ecological research and quantitative approaches
  • Knowledge of data formats and standards common within ecological and biological research
  • Application of statistical methods to address hypothesis testing
  •  Experience of partnership working and collaborative science projects

    Skills and attributes

  • Organised and reliable in working to agreed deadlines
  • Independent worker
  • Self-motivated and confident.
  • Able to communicate well both orally and in written form.
  • Work well, and collaboratively, in a team environment when required.
  • UK driving licence

     

     

    Applications from suitable canidates are invited by submitting a CV and covering letter by email to

    [email protected]

    Further details on the post can obtained by contacting the PI (Dr Colin Bull) via email at

    [email protected]

    Closing date for applications is noon on 21st September 2020. Skype interviews will take place during the week of 28th September with an anticipated starting date as soon as possible after appointment.