Job Description: Data Analyst

As a Data Analyst, you will acquire and analyze global datasets from the United Nations (Comtrade, Food and Agricultural Organization, Fishbase), the International Energy Association, the World Bank and International Monetary Fund, and others. These data will be used to develop an edition of the National Ecological Footprint and Biocapacity Accounts of all nations on the planet from 1961 to the present.

As a Data Analyst, you will work collaboratively with students and faculty from York University and staff from the Global Footprint Network. Your experience working on the accounts will develop your mastery of 1) specific data sets and data procedures used to generate an edition of the accounts; 2) the application and troubleshooting of computer code and data queries; 3) the application of factors and equations using computational hardware and software including MySQL, R, Workbench, Excel, and the proprietary software INFAMOUS.

Principal Duties:

  • Obtaining and transforming data into formats suitable for computational analysis and uploading into a cloud-based database.
  • Using Structured Query Language (SQL) to analyze and transform data and relational data tables and to modify existing scripts.
  • Applying Quality Assurance principles and techniques on data to verify integrity.
  • Using Microsoft Excel functions to generate statistics and investigate outliers, and to effectively communicate data using visualizations.
  • Using scripts within the computer software R and R Studio to analyze data and to generate histograms and time series.
  • Applying scripts written within R to clean data outliers.
  • Executing the proprietary program INFAMOUS to generate batches of Ecological Footprint and Biocapacity data.
  • Contributing to projects by applying the Ecological Footprint by generating graphs and maps, retrieving data and analyzing trends.
  • Revising project documents with updated processes and best practices.
  • Using project management software to plan and assess workflow and progress.

Optionally you may also provide summaries and interpretations of Footprint data for internal use, as well as for clients, partners, and the general public.

Optionally you may also contribute to engaging with the public and mass media about data products and special events.

Requirements that need to be demonstrated:

  • Understanding of the concept and methodology of Ecological Footprint and Biocapacity accounting including some of its associated literature.
  • Experience using MS Excel to engage with data in the XLSX and CSV format and to communicate it using graphs and tables.
  • Experience using mySQL Workbench to understand and develop and troubleshoot mySQL scripts.
  • Experience using mySQL to upload and transform data using various types of queries and associated joins and functions.
  • Experience engaging with the repository BitBucket to store, share and manage versions and histories of scripts.
  • Experience engaging with R scripts running within RStudio to analyze and transform data.
  • Creativity, initiative, strong quantitative skills, patience, and the ability to wrap your head around complicated calculations.
  • Excellent research and time management skills.
  • Demonstrated ability to work collaboratively in a self-directed environment.

These requirements can be demonstrated by satisfactory completion of the courses Ecological Footprint Analytics and Ecological Footprint Accounting.

Location and scheduling of work

This is a contractual position with York University on behalf of the Footprint Data Foundation (FODAFO) which is co-owned by York University and the Global Footprint Network. Supervision is provided by York Faculty member Eric Miller in his capacity as FODAFO Executive Officer.

Specific days and hours are to be scheduled, but generally about 7 hours per day, at 3-4 days per week, for 3 months over the summer term. Hours are scheduled around intensive courses and other academic activities. Hours are recorded on electronic timesheets and pay is handled by York University in accordance with York University staffing policies and procedures.

Successful performance during the summer can result in an offer of a Research Assistantship in the Fall and Winter terms for up to an average of 10 hours per week.