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Scientific Software Strategic Head - 'Head of Informatics Lab & Technical Lead for Data Science'

Posted: 11 Jan 2021 Closes: 7 Feb 2021
Exeter, GB Salary starting at
Permanent & Full-time met-office/20210111144114

Data Science is a rapidly developing field, with a wide variety of potential applications across science and technology. Positioning the Met Office to be at the forefront of the development of Data Science, able to realise the opportunities, and meet the challenges, associated with the increasing volume and availability of environmental data is a key part of the Corporate Strategy and Research and Innovation (R&I) Strategy. The R&I Strategy commits the Met Office to ensuring that staff are equipped with the training, tools, infrastructure and support that they require to fully realise the value of new techniques and approaches in the weather and climate endeavour.

The Head of Informatics Lab & Technical Lead for Data Science post will provide technical leadership for the Met Office’s Informatics Lab and, more broadly, for Met Office staff using Data Science techniques, both currently and in the future. They will support key strategic partnerships in Data Science, including the Joint Centre for Excellence in Environmental Intelligence (JCEEI). The JCEEI is an Exeter-based partnership, currently between the Met Office and the University of Exeter, that will provide both the research and computational infrastructure that are required to maximise the impact of data science and artificial intelligence in addressing environmentally-related challenges. The post-holder will oversee the Met Office’s technical contribution to the Centre and provide technical support for the Met Office’s JCEEI Co-Director.


Job Purpose:

To provide technical leadership in Data Science within the Met Office.

Job Responsibilities:

  • Provide the technical leadership, insight, creativity and innovation needed to deliver the Data Science related components of the Met Office's Corporate Strategy and the Research and Innovation Strategy.
  • Lead, manage and develop the Informatics Team to meet current and future business requirements.
  • Oversee the Met Office’s technical contribution to the JCEEI.
  • Promote the use of Data Science across the Met Office science and technology teams and oversee the implementation of data science techniques on computational platforms.
  • Design, implement and deliver Data Science capabilities and ensure transfer of information and expertise between the Met Office, JCEEI and Informatics Lab.
  • Foster an inclusive network of technical collaborators and partners who can implement, and deliver, the Met Office’s Corporate Strategy, the Research and Innovation Strategy and the JCEEI’s Strategic Objectives.
  • Forecast and manage the resources needed to deliver the key areas of Data Science research and development, including negotiation of resourcing and requirements with senior colleagues.

Essential Qualifications, Skills & Abilities:

  1. Recognised reputation as a technical lead across Data Science, Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning.
  2. A track record in technical leadership of a research group in government, industry or academia.
  3. Excellent team leadership skills and ability to enhance capability by developing a team using coaching and interpersonal skills
  4. Excellent communication skills (verbal, written, presentation and listening) with a proven ability to successfully inspire partners and stakeholders to generate enthusiasm and commitment to a shared vision.
  5. Experience of developing Data Science methodology and implementation in support of environmental applications (ideally weather and climate).
  6. Proven ability to forecast, negotiate and control resources successfully and to consistently deliver outputs.

Desirable Qualifications, Skills & Abilities:

  1. Experience of being a public face for an organisation.

Additional Supplementary Information:

To apply, please click on the ‘apply’ button below.

Key Dates: Closing date 07/02/2021 with interviews expected W/C 22/02/2021. Please note that you will be notified if you are successful or unsuccessful.

Should you be offered an interview, please be aware that you may be asked to make a 10 minute presentation as part of the interview. If you require any reasonable adjustments during these exercises, please include this information in your application. 

At present, all interviews will take place remotely via Microsoft Teams.

This is a permanent job. Full-time and slightly less than full-time applications are invited. This job will based in the Science Park, Exeter (post-COVID restrictions) but we will consider applicants wishing to work elsewhere within the UK within operational requirements.

There is expected to be a significant amount of meetings between partners and teams post COVID-19 restrictions in Exeter.

Occasional travel in the UK and overseas will be needed, normally with plenty of notice.

Please note, when joining the Met Office all new employees will start on the salary band minimum.

This recruitment post is not offering UK Visa and Sponsorship and therefore requires all applicants to be eligible to work within the UK without restriction.

Please note that successful candidate/s will be required to satisfactorily undergo security clearance checks. This will generally require the candidate to have lived in the UK for at least three out of the last five years, but applicants not meeting this criteria may be considered.

We recognise that Great Minds Don’t Think Alike. Consequently, the Met Office is committed to working towards being a more diverse and inclusive organisation and to valuing and utilising visible and invisible individual differences. This includes continually striving to create a positive and open environment in which to work, along with ensuring that there are no barriers implicit in our policies or procedures preventing people from performing to the best of their ability. We are a “Disability Confident” employer, Mindful Employer, and we hold an Athena Swan Bronze award for our work on gender equality. We are proud to have a variety of staff-led networks who constantly work with us to enable everyone to fulfil their full potential. We are taking measures throughout our Recruitment process to tackle unconscious bias, and we apply the Civil Service Code to ensure that everyone is recruited on merit, fairness and open competition.

Met Office

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