EarthCube Technical Officer, Boulder, Colorado | POGO

EarthCube Technical Officer, Boulder, Colorado

This is a full-time, 2-year term position with possibility of an extension.  Initial consideration will be given to applications received prior to 4 pm on March 22nd 2017.  Thereafter, applications will be reviewed on an as-needed basis.


UCAR Community Programs (UCP) – Unidata

Partial relocation costs paid per UCAR’s relocation policy.

U.S. Citizenship, Permanent Residency, or other protected status under 8 U.S.C. 1324b(a)(3) is required for this position.  UCAR/NCAR will not sponsor a work visa (e.g., J-1, H1-B, etc.) for this position.


Overview – “Where You Will Work”

The National Science Foundation (NSF) EarthCube initiative is a community-driven project aimed at creating an integrated environment for the sharing of geoscience data and knowledge in an open, transparent, and inclusive manner. EarthCube is governed and guided by its Leadership Council, Standing Committees, Teams, and Working Groups. The community-based EarthCube Science Support Office (ESSO) was created to oversee and support EarthCube project activities.


The ESSO facilitates the efforts of the scientific community in carrying out the tasks of EarthCube Governance in order to advance EarthCube’s mission by providing coordination, administrative, budgetary, communication, outreach, documentation, meeting, and other related logistical support to its governing bodies and the community at large. ESSO’s aim is to organize and manage community dialog, strengthen ongoing efforts to define and resolve common challenges, and help realize EarthCube’s full potential and vision. In doing so, ESSO strives to increase the efficiency, cost effectiveness, and transparency of support services to its governance stakeholders.


The EarthCube Technical Officer (ETO) is a key position in the EarthCube Science Support Office (ESSO) within UCAR’s Unidata Program Center and supported by CPAESS. The ETO will develop and keep current a high-level cyberinfrastructure strategy that is aligned with EarthCube goals, vision, and user needs. The ETO will also serve as a resource and focal point for the Leadership Council on the development of the architecture; working with EarthCube committees and working groups on the EarthCube Implementation plan.


The ETO will oversee broad technical developments in EarthCube's Architecture Implementation Plan. This will include facilitating the development of key technical documents on data and metadata standards, and other architectural elements such as use cases, requirements, services, APIs and other technical components of EarthCube cyberinfrastructure.


The ETO will serve as the interface between the technology/developer community and geoscientists, helping to translate messages across the two groups and bridging any understanding gaps and making sure that the needs of both are included in the path forward.

About EarthCube


Position Details – “What You Will Do”

Cyberinfrastructure Development and Management

Develop and keep current, a high-level cyberinfrastructure strategy that is aligned with EarthCube goals, vision, and user needs.

Serve as a resource and focal point for the Leadership Council on the development of the cyberinfrastructure architecture; work with relevant EarthCube committees and working groups on the EarthCube Implementation Plan.

Manage the EarthCube reference cyberinfrastructure architecture; facilitate the development of key technical documents on data, metadata standards, and other architectural elements such as services, protocols, APIs and other technical components of EarthCube cyberinfrastructure.

Oversee technical developments in EarthCube's Implementation Plan; when required, lead a phased implementation of EarthCube infrastructure using rapid prototyping and agile development approaches, building upon existing, emerging and evolving EarthCube activities in order to benefit multidisciplinary geosciences research.

Drive standardization across EarthCube, identifying specific standards for and requirements to integrate existing and emergent resources into the EarthCube architecture.

Create and implement a process to investigate, collect, evaluate, and maintain an inventory of existing and emergent cyberinfrastructure assets and components, including resources and capabilities in the Council of Data Facilities, EarthCube-funded projects, and the broader geoscience community.


EarthCube Committee, Community and Governance Engagement and Outreach 

Work with EarthCube-funded projects, Council of Data Facilities, and other efforts in the cyberinfrastructure community in communicating and facilitating the accomplishment of goals, objectives and milestones in accordance with EarthCube's Implementation Plan.

Develop, maintain, and update status summaries and metrics of progress of key funded project capabilities.

Produce accurate, meaningful and timely reports for EarthCube governance bodies and NSF.

Communicate and collaborate effectively and work closely within a coordinated but distributed team environment.

Identify and predict user needs related to EarthCube cyberinfrastructure and propose technology solutions.

Assist in the continual assessment of resources, capabilities, and assets in a highly distributed EarthCube ecosystem.


Minimum Job Requirements – “What You Need”

Minimum of ten years experience with scientific applications and scientific data services.

Bachelor’s degree in atmospheric or related sciences, mathematics or computer science; or an equivalent combination of education and experience.

Occasional travel is required for this position, up to 15%.

Experience in and expert knowledge of scientific cyberinfrastructure and data services environments, including design experience and technical knowledge.

Expert skill in more than one programming language and operating system.

Demonstrated skill in applying software analysis, design, and development methodologies.

In-depth knowledge of more than one application domain.

Proven leadership in technical team work, effectively identifying and framing problems, analyzing information to produce timely decisions and workable solutions, resolving disagreements, building consensus, and negotiating change.

Strong communication and professional capabilities, including the ability to articulate a compelling vision for EarthCube architecture, and to clearly communicate complex technical concepts to relevant stakeholders.

Proven critical thinking and strong analytical and problem solving skills.

Demonstrated ability to multitask and manage simultaneous projects to meet deadlines with a strong attention to detail.

Ability to work both independently, with a strong team spirit and commitment to share and collaborate. 


Desired Skills

Experience with open-source software projects and development process.

Experience with geoscience data formats (e.g., netCDF, GRIB, BUFR).

Demonstrated skill with a compiled programming language (e.g., C, C++, Fortran).

Familiarity with scientific data access including remote data access protocols (e.g., ADDE and OPeNDAP).

Working knowledge of meteorological data and real-time data streams.

Knowledge of EarthCube’s mission, goals, and its community. 



The University Corporation for Atmospheric Research (UCAR) is an equal opportunity/equal access/affirmative action employer that strives to develop and maintain a diverse workforce. UCAR is committed to providing equal opportunity for all employees and applicants for employment and does not discriminate on the basis of race, age, creed, color, religion, national origin or ancestry, sex, gender, disability, veteran status, genetic information, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, or pregnancy.


Whatever your intersection of identities, you are welcome at the University Corporation for Atmospheric Research (UCAR). We are committed to inclusivity and promoting an equitable environment that values and respects the uniqueness of all members of our organization.

Job Location

Boulder, Colorado, United States

Position Type


Appointment Type

Term Full-Time (T1)

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