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Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution Data Operations Manager in Woods Hole, Massachusetts

Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution is currently searching for a Data Operations Manager to join the Applied Ocean Physics & Engineering Department. This is a regular full-time, exempt position, and is eligible for full benefits.

Have you ever wanted to make an impact across the oceanographic community as a whole? The Applied Ocean Physics & Engineering Department is searching for a Data Operations Manager to join the Ocean Observatories Initiative (OOI) Coastal and Global Scale Nodes (CGSN) team. OOI is an NSF funded project with the purpose of providing infrastructure and instrumentation to measure physical, chemical and biological processes for the scientific community over long time scales. This operationally-and data-focused team is responsible for collecting data continuously from instruments deployed at OOI Arrays across the globe, pushing the limits of ocean technology and enabling cutting-edge ocean research.

The CGSN Data Operations Manager is primarily responsible for ensuring that data from oceanographic moorings and vehicles are being served to the science community with appropriate quality flags and annotations, and addressing data issues. The Data Operations Manager will also be responsible for working with the CGSN Software Team to deliver data tools to the OOI mooring and vehicle operators. With little supervision, works creatively and independently to establish objectives, meet deadlines, and complete difficult assignments by demonstrating full competency in one or more areas of scientific investigation; assists substantively in planning technical aspects of experiments as well as identifying and developing techniques and instrumentation for scientific investigation in the laboratory and/or the field.

The internal working title for this position is Research Associate III.

  • Responsible for data delivery and availability from three instrumented ocean observatories (15 moorings, 2 AUVs, and multiple gliders).

  • Manage ingestion of real-time and recovered data into the OOI Cyberinfrastructure.

  • Monitor data that is telemetered to shore from deployed platforms, and identify issues with instruments.

  • Work with CGSN operations and engineering teams to rectify issues and create issue descriptions (annotations).

  • Design, develop and document tools or scripts as needed to analyze/plot data from instruments or collections of instruments for data quality and system performance assessment.

  • Create data quality flags and data annotations to be communicated to end users via a web-based database application using a combination of automated and manual data assessment tools.

  • Assist in the development and implementation of community standard quality control algorithms for real-time data (e.g. QARTOD).

  • Quantify the results of data quality assessment and system performance as metrics and graphs for high-level reporting purposes.

  • Participate in producing recommendations for the evolution of the observing system based on data quality assessments.

  • Respond to science community requests/questions related to data availability, data access, data quality and instrument configuration and status.

  • Coordinate with the Data Science Manager on the interpretation of real-time data quality issues, and with the CGSN Software Lead to maintain, improve and deliver data visualization and system alert tools to the OOI mooring and vehicle operators.

  • Exercises independent judgment and creativity in making adaptations or modifications to standard research and laboratory methods.

  • Assists in the preparation of scholarly papers and research proposals and demonstrates skill in communicating the results of the scientific endeavors.

  • May prepare and produce independent writings of scientific endeavors.

  • May supervise other technical staff personnel within the laboratory.


  • Monitor real-time and recovered data for quality assurance during integration and test, and deployment.

  • Develop automated processes for comparing mooring-collected data and ship-collected data (e.g., meteorology, CTD casts, water samples) for data validation.

  • Participate in at least one deployment cruise a year to support at sea data validation.

  • May engage in written and oral communication of results in publications or at conferences.

  • May assist with other software tasks and develop new software as needed.

  • Other functions deemed necessary by supervisor.

  • Minimum Qualifications for Research Associate III:

  • PhD, or Masters degree with at least three years of relevant experience in a related field (e.g., oceanography, physics, chemistry, biology, a related geophysical science, or data science).

  • In the absence of a graduate degree, considerable related work experience is required.

  • Successful candidates will have demonstrated the technical skill, motivation, independence, and creativity necessary to complete difficult tasks.

Previous Experience Desired:

  • A demonstrated background processing oceanographic data.

  • Experience with Data Management and different mechanisms of data delivery.

  • Experience with common oceanographic data formats, conventions, and servers (e.g. NetCDF, NetCDF CF Metadata Conventions, ERDDAP, etc.).

  • Experience with large data sets, databases, and data delivery (e.g., ERDDAP, M2M, PostgreSQL).

  • Experience with scientific programming, including proficiency with common data analysis software (e.g., MATLAB, Python, UNIX shell scripts, SQL queries, etc.).

  • Experience/familiarity with PC, Mac, and Linux computing platforms.

  • Experience with RESTful APIs and Django web frameworks.

  • Experience with Docker.

  • Experience developing with open-source tools.

  • Experience managing code with Git version control.

  • Experience troubleshooting and debugging software tools and systems.

  • Education/experience in engineering and/or software is a plus.

  • Practical experience with scientific instruments, particularly oceanographic instruments.

  • Motivated individual demonstrating strong attention to detail, excellent written and verbal communication skills and documentation proficiency.

  • Demonstrated ability to work creatively and independently, and take initiative.

  • Excellent time management skills to prioritize tasks, manage people, and meet schedule constraints.

  • Creativity to come up with innovative solutions for process improvement.

While there is no appropriate time limit for appointment at this rank, exceptional individuals will be promoted. Candidates should develop a mastery of specialized techniques or ingenuity and creativity in selecting and evaluating approaches to problems. They should develop the ability to apply an analytical approach to solutions and to assimilate the details and significance of various analyses, procedures, and tests prior to being considered for promotion.

May require handling oceanographic instrumentation and shipping containers. Includes opportunities to go to sea. Physical duties for this position include but are not limited to, ability to lift less than 25 lbs independently, 2 times per day; carry 10-25 lbs, 2 times per day. Visual abilities to include near, far, peripheral, depth perception, and ability to distinguish basic colors. Hearing requirements include the ability to hear and respond to instructions, communicate effectively in loud areas (pier/dock, warehouse). Other physical tasks include occasional prolonged standing/walking; use of hands for basic /fine grasping and manipulation, repetitive motion, reaching above and below the shoulders, pushing, pulling, kneeling, bending, twisting, and stooping. Other occupational requirements include talking, traveling, working around others, and with others. Will be exposed to dust or other irritants and electrical/mechanical/power equipment hazards. Physical duties are subject to change.

May work at least 8 hours per day and, at times in excess of 12 hours per day, 7 days per week. Sleep and work hours can deviate from those on land. May be expected to work on watch schedule (such as 8 hours on and 8 hours off or 12 hours on and 8 hours off) for all or part of a cruise or to work as hours are needed to accomplish the planned work. May need to travel during holidays and for long distances to and from foreign ports. May experience rudimentary living and working conditions, with shared and basic living quarters and laboratories. May experience bad or extreme weather conditions, including heavy seas, winter weather or hot, tropical weather. Work on deck may occur in both hot and cold conditions around the clock. Sea conditions will lead to active ship motion. Should be able to climb steep and vertical ladders and able to enter and exit compartments through hatches, doors, and sills. Should be able to carry heavy gear and participate in the loading and unloading of the ship as well as in the activities on deck and in the labs during the cruise. Shipboard environment may include: confined areas, shared sleeping quarters (berths) and bathroom facilities, small and basic berthing, fixed meal times and basic menus. Modest levels of heating, cooling, ventilation, and illumination, limited or no email and internet access and limited off-duty and recreational facilities (library, lounge, movies). May be exposed to potential allergens and irritants, including paint fumes. May experience constant and intermittent loud noises, and slippery and uneven surfaces.

Job ID: 2020-1333

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Street: 266 Woods Hole Rd