The Information Science Program at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology is currently seeking an eBird Project Assistant. This position will assist with all aspects of the eBird project. Please read through the entire position description for duties, required qualifications, and preferred qualifications. This position is based in Ithaca, New York. Don't let the photo at right mislead you-that is a vacation day, not work.
eBird has evolved from a stand-alone citizen-science project focused on collecting data, into a cooperative partnership involving several distinct user groups spanning multiple scientific domains and dozens of partner organizations, each with its own unique interests in the project's success. eBird collects information about the distribution and abundance of birds, taking advantage of the enormous popularity of birding to create a global network of volunteers who submit bird observations via the Internet to a central data repository. Through a combination of broad-based community engagement and global partnerships, the volume of data coming into eBird has been increasing exponentially (30-40% annually) for the last decade. eBird is regarded as one of the largest and fastest growing biodiversity databases in the world. Presently, the eBird database contains more than 200 million observations of almost all known species of birds. More than 200 thousand participants have volunteered over 15 million observation hours and have submitted bird observations from 2.1 million locations and from every country in the world. In addition, eBird data are relied upon for a variety of research initiatives in Information Science, other Cornell Lab programs (e.g., Citizen Science, Education, Conservation, Bird Population Studies and Cornell), external academic institutions (e.g., Carnegie Mellon, Northeastern, U of New Mexico, U of Utah, and Oregon State), governmental departments and agencies in the U.S. and abroad (e.g., U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Oak Ridge National Labs, US Department of Defense, CONABIO [Comision Nacional para el Conocimento y Uso de la Biodiversidad], and nongovernmental organizations (e.g., Point Blue Conservation Science, Bird Studies Canada, Audubon) and private companies.
The Cornell Lab of Ornithology is a major, globally focused institution for research, training, and public communication relating to birds and biodiversity. Information Science is one of eleven programmatic units that carry out the Lab's mission to interpret and conserve the earth's biological diversity through research, education, and citizen science focused on birds. The Information Science program develops data intensive techniques and applies them to massive quantities of bird observational data, with the goal of using these big data techniques for basic and/or applied research that contributes directly to the conservation of biological diversity at the species, population, or community level. One of the major projects in Information Science is eBird.
Handle the day-to-day coordination of eBird
Coordinate the eBird Help Center and communication with users
Help expand the global eBird community by working with project leaders to further partnerships with other Cornell programs, external academic institutions, nongovernmental organizations and governmental departments and agencies in the U.S. and abroad
Assist with eBird data quality processes worldwide and help coordinate the network of 800+ regional editors
Assist eBird development staff and partners gathering requirements for new eBird activities
Assist the entire eBird team in the planning, implementation, and tracking of existing and future projects
Assist in mass media related to the program
Assist with the coordination of work with staff to ensure efficient, high-quality, and timely production
Work closely with Cornell students and outside partners to meet goals and objectives for eBird
Annual term appointment with possible renewal based on performance and available funding.
Formal training beyond a HS Diploma of 6 months to one year's duration or equivalent, or Associates Degree; more than four years, but less than six years or equivalent.
Deep understanding of birds and bird distribution is required.
Proven skills in project management and coordination are essential, along with excellent interpersonal skills.
Familiarity and proficiency with the Internet and content management systems is critical, along with a strong interest in using the Web as a tool to conduct research, engage and educate the public.
Mastery of common computer skills including word, email, and excel.
Prior knowledge of social media outlets.
Strong communication skills (written and oral) to clearly articulate vision and plans, and provide instruction effectively to all levels of management, staff, new partners, funding agencies, eBird users, and visitors.
Ability to establish and maintain effective working relationships with all levels of management and staff internally and externally.
Candidate will value teamwork and be able to stimulate cooperation between all employees and partners.
Strong interpersonal skills.
High level of integrity and dependability with a strong sense of urgency and results-orientation.
Provide high level of initiative to anticipate needs of the project and fulfill project objectives with very minimal supervision.
Ability to prioritize activities and multitask is essential.
Bachelor's degree preferred.
Proficiency in Spanish and/or Portuguese.
Experience with GIS software.
At least two years' experience using eBird and eBird Review tools preferred.
Experience with WordPress, SQL helpful.
This position is open to internal and external applicants through 12 November 2014 on the Jobs at Cornell website:
If you have any questions, please contact Chris Wood (chris.wood AT cornell.edu).