VoLo Data Scientist

With world attention on both the environment and the economy, Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) is where policymakers and business leaders turn for win-win solutions. By focusing on strong science, uncommon partnerships and market-based approaches, we tackle urgent threats with practical solutions. We are one of the world’s largest environmental organizations, with more than two million members and a staff of approximately 630 scientists, economists, policy experts, and other professionals around the world. We operate in 22 geographies with unique projects running across four programs. You will be part of a vibrant workplace that welcomes diverse perspectives, talents and contributions, where innovation and results are a way of life.

The Office of Chief Scientist (OCS) is the nexus of science at EDF, ensuring that the scientific backbone for all EDF policy positions is based on the best available information. To be effective in this role, OCS works with staff from across EDF and provides programmatic support for all EDF scientists as well as fosters relationships with scientists in academia, government and industry.


Position Description


OCS collaborates with a wide variety of partners from researchers and academics to startups and large corporations to advance science and scale our solutions. With our air quality initiative, we have gathered high resolution spatio-temporal air pollution data and continue to do so. We have developed methodologies to analyze these data and derive meaningful insights, identifying persistent spatial air pollution trends. We are now embarking on an effort to automate and scale data analytics in the air quality domain.  The term for this position is two-years, sponsored by the VoLo Foundation.



Key Responsibilities

  • Work with large, diverse and complex air pollution and spatial data sets
  • Devise statistical methods to perform data profiling, cleansing, signal/noise separation and quality assure the data
  • Understand the analytics workflow currently developed and executed manually, and create a design to automate
  • Interact with domain experts to formalize requirements for valuable, frequently needed software functions and libraries (e.g., outlier identification), with a focus on generalizing individual, project-specific requirements, to facilitate reuse, automation and scaling
  • Integrate machine learning to programmatically fetch insights about the data and reduce manual data analysis efforts
  • Develop modular, plug-n-play software components that can be orchestrated into an automated workflow to scale data analysis processes
  • Explore technology stack options and recommend the best fit
  • Design and develop data visualization templates to present analytics results to the management, partners and general public
  • Work with internal and external stakeholders to communicate analytical results to non-technical audiences


Required Qualifications

  • Master’s degree in a quantitative discipline such as Mathematics, Computer Science, Physics, Statistics, Engineering, Economics, Bioinformatics, Computational Biology or related fields
  • 3+ years of relevant work experience as a data scientist
  • Proficient in a scientific programming language such as Python, R
  • In-depth knowledge of the latest statistical and machine learning algorithms such as GBM, Light GBM, Random Forests, Neural Networks, Deep Learning as well as feature selection techniques
  • Experience with SQL
  • In depth knowledge of regression techniques: linear, ridge, logistical, etc. and able to interpret results
  • Ability to work independently and proficiently; accountable for own results
  • Ability to articulate technical data analytics concepts to managers and executives


Preferred Skills and Previous Experience

  • Background in air pollution chemistry and/or physics is a plus
  • Experience with cloud computing, big data technologies such as Hadoop, Spark, and NoSQL databases preferred
  • Environmental data analysis or air quality data analysis experience is a plus




This position will be located in Boston, MA, Washington, DC, San Francisco, CA or New York, NY.



*All interested applicants must submit a resume and cover letter explaining their interest in the role. 

Environmental Defense Fund is an equal opportunity employer where an applicant's qualifications are considered without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, veteran status, genetic information, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, or any other basis prohibited by law.