Grand Challenges Data Administrator

Los Angeles
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Created: September 6, 2016


As part of UCLA's Centennial, the University announced a series of Grand Challenges: ambitious research projects that connect hundreds of faculty, students, community members and leading experts across every field to solve society's toughest problems. These Grand Challenges are the biggest, most collaborative, and potentially most transformative efforts UCLA has undertaken to date. The discoveries and scholarship produced are expected to deliver real benefit to California, the nation, and the world.

This initiative seeks to achieve renewable energy and sustainability in local water while enhancing ecosystem and human health in Los Angeles County by 2050. The Grand Challenges Data Administrator will identify and support the data practices and needs of the Sustainable LA Grand Challenge research cohort, which includes faculty, researchers, students, community groups, and government agencies.

Reporting to the Data Management Strategist and in coordination with Head of the Digital Library Program and the Director of the Sustainable Los Angeles Grand Challenges, the Grand Challenges Data Administrator (GCDA) will be an active collaborator and liaison with faculty and researchers who are directly involved with the Sustainable LA Grand Challenge. Working closely with the UCLA Library, Sustainable LA Grand Challenge, and campus partners the GCDA will cultivate and promote data resources and services, including consultation, outreach, assistance in finding, cleaning, analyzing, and managing data for research purposes.

The GCDA will identify and develop strategies for how to collect, promote, disseminate, archive, and provide access to relevant datasets that emerge from the Sustainable LA Grand Challenge. The GCDA will investigate and implement relevant models for data discovery, data accessibility, metadata creation, visualization, and data re-use. The GCDA will partner with researchers in order to assess data needs, develop shared metadata standards and practices, and help to establish data related workflows and methods. The GCDA will provide assistance directly to researchers to ensure that data is well-managed and accessible, and coordinate support activities throughout the campus, including the Library, computing centers, the statistical consulting group, and other research units and groups.

In the first year of the position the GCDA will produce a report with findings and recommendations for how the library will provide ongoing support for the Sustainable LA Grand Challenge. In subsequent years, the GCDA will continue to work with faculty and researchers and implement initiatives and services that support the Sustainable LA Grand Challenge, such as the creation of a data portal/archive or a series of Sustainable LA Grand Challenge related events hosted by the Library.

Digital Initiatives and Information Technology (DIIT) supports library staff and users by providing access to library technologies via the campus network infrastructure backbone. Through collaborative efforts with all areas of UCLA's Library, DIIT assists in the development and delivery of technologies for all types of electronic resources. DIIT's 40 staff members also work as collaborative partners with units in other areas of the Library, and provide technology support for the major business systems used by the Library.

DIIT Data Management Services focuses on strategic planning for 21st Century data services. Working jointly with the Digital Library and DIIT technology groups, as well as with central campus IT units, DMS defines and implements services at the intersection of technology, research and data management in support of the campus academic community.

Recent MLIS/MIS graduates are especially invited to apply.

Please apply at the web site.


1. BA or BS in Environmental Sciences, inter/transdisciplinary field of study, or other fields relevant to the Sustainable LA Grand Challenge research goals or equivalent education and experience.
2. Strong written and oral communication skills and the ability to craft clear and coherent documents and correspondence.
3. Ability to articulate commitment to diversity, open communication, and public service.
4. Ability to work independently as well as with colleagues and researchers from diverse backgrounds.
5. Ability to work in a collegial, collaborative and diverse academic environment.
6. Ability to meet deadlines and manage multiple priorities effectively and professionally.
7. Demonstrated competency working with a wide range of quantitative and qualitative data.
8. Working knowledge of software, data sources, and statistical and other tools such as ICPSR, SAS, SPSS, Stata, R, ArcGIS.
9. Demonstrated ability to conduct research consultations in a library or academic setting.
10. Demonstrated ability to conduct outreach presentations to a broad range of audiences.
11. Demonstrated skill in architecting data delivery models and methodologies.
12. Demonstrated skill with database design and schema.
13. Demonstrated skill with the SQL language, or a related database-oriented language.
14. Knowledge of common data digital formats such as XML and JSON.
15. At least three years of relevant work experience in Environmental Sciences, a related field, or in a data-focused work environment in an academic setting.


Published: Tuesday, September 6, 2016 08:33 UTC

Last updated: Tuesday, February 28, 2017 23:40 UTC