SAGE seeks project assistant for data visualization

The Nelson Institute Center for Sustainability and the Global Environment (SAGE) seeks a graduate student project assistant (PA) to help develop interactive graphics for public engagement in environmental research. With a 1-year grant from the National Center for Freight Infrastructure Research & Education (CFIRE), Prof. Holloway is looking to develop user-friendly graphics to communicate research results on transportation and air quality, and to engage the public in issues related to sustainable transportation systems, especially truck and rail.

They are looking for a PA to create interactive graphics, like those in The New York Times, based on past research results and data sets. Work will employ the IBM “Many Eyes” software (a version of which is used by the Times) and may expand to more advanced software tools. The PA will help conceptualize and develop a suite of engaging, user-friendly interactive graphics. These graphics are intended to showcase research and teach about transportation and air quality. As such, they need to be attractive, clear, and well documented.

Applications are welcome from graduate students in: a) technical fields (computer science, engineering, atmospheric and oceanic science, etc.) with strong communication skills and an interest in public engagement; b) communication-related fields (journalism, art, design, marketing, etc.) with an interest in and ability to learn new software tools and work with large datasets; c) interdisciplinary programs (the Nelson Institute, urban planning, public policy, etc.) with strong communication and quantitative analysis skills; d) any field fitting the criteria noted above. Preference will be given to candidates with experience in website development, programming (esp. Python or Java), graphic communication and design, and/or digital media for education and outreach. 

Interested students should send a resume or C.V. and cover letter (describing interest in the position and relevant background) to Prof. Tracey Holloway, . Applications received by Aug. 3 will receive full consideration.

Duties: This 50% PA appointment = about 20 hours/week.  Likely duties include:

  • Working with Holloway and her research group to conceptualize interactive graphics
  • Learning and using the IBM Many Eyes software
  • Working with a wide range of data formats (e.g. GIS, netCDF, Excel, text, databases, etc.) Applicants need not already be familiar with these data formats
  • Learning and applying new software tools beyond Many Eyes on an as-needed basis, including Matlab, Python or Java web-programming.
  • Scientific writing to explain graphic and engage users in associated content
  • Working with web developers, researchers, users, and external collaborators to evaluate and refine web content and interactive graphics.
  • Activities related to computers, data manipulation, graphic design, writing, and collaboration

Initial appointment will cover Fall semester (August 27, 2012 through December 26, 2012) with extension to Spring 2013 pending satisfactory performance.

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