Post-Doctoral Fellow (Data Systems)

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WorldFish seeks to create an inclusive world of healthy, well-nourished people and a sustainable blue planet, now and in the future. We provide research and innovation in aquatic food systems to support sustainable development and food system transformation toward healthy and resilient diets. Our 2030 WorldFish Research and Innovation Strategy: Aquatic Foods for Healthy People and Planet outlines our commitment to guiding the transition to more resilient aquatic food systems in three priority impact areas: Social and Economic Inclusion, Nutrition and Public Health, and Climate Resilience and Environmental Sustainability.

About the Position

The recruited Post-Doctoral Fellow will work with WorldFish scientists and international partners to support research and development of innovative data approaches, algorithm integration, tools, models, and analytics to assess the performance and adoption of technology innovations in relation to aquaculture and fisheries, and more in general to aquatic food systems.

The research will focus on the design and use of big data approaches and information & communication technologies (ICT) in relation to aquaculture and fisheries innovations, aquaculture systems, geospatial vessel tracking, and information systems, and more broadly to social and economic disciplines.

Topics considered particularly relevant for this postdoctoral position are: big data approaches, artificial intelligence, machine learning, data mining, knowledge discovery in databases, text & data analytics, statistics, and visualization. The position is related to the CGIAR Resilient Aquatic Foods System Research Initiative (AquaData Work package) and will support the design and implementation of data and analytical elements of related bilateral projects.

The Person

The successful candidate will be responsible to:

  • Collection, assembly, processing and visual representation of large datasets to identify and describe patterns in aquaculture and fisheries productivity, performance and systems and corresponding explanatory factors using data mining and machine learning.
  • Conduct research to identify input, production, climate, environmental, market and socioeconomic data sources (structured and unstructured) and automate data collection /processing into structured databases with standard meta-data.
  • Develop and/or adapt seamless ICT-based tools for field data collection, passive data capture, and cloud-based processing for primary data.
  • Collaborate with WorldFish and partner scientists to estimate aquaculture innovation and system performance, including environmental implications.
  • Collaborate with WorldFish scientists and partners to develop user-friendly decision support tools (dashboards and/or web apps) and ICT-based aquaculture advisory systems, including back-end design and contributions to front-end architecture, as well as training in tool use and efforts to assure dissemination of key innovations.
  • Develop and lead an active training program for WorldFish scientists and partners in focal and scaling countries to increase data analytical skills and to institutionalize big-data capacity.
  • In coordination with the MELIA and Data team, co-develop and support a digital dashboard to facilitate management of WorldFish projects and research.
  • Work with WorldFish scientists to collaboratively develop a portfolio of high-profile peer-reviewed publications.
  • Contribute to project design, development, and implementation.
  • Perform other relevant duties as requested by the supervisor(s).


This job might be for you if you have the below skills and qualifications:

  • PhD Degree in Computer Science, Statistics, Computer Engineering or similar discipline with application in and/or strong knowledge of aquaculture and environmental issues. Candidates may also have a PhD in Agricultural or Environmental Science (or related discipline) with strong evidence of Computer Science, Statistics or Computer Engineering skills.
  • Proficiency in at least one common programming and statistical computing language (e.g. Python, MATLAB, FORTRAN). Knowledge of JAVA is beneficial.
  • Demonstrated experience using machine learning with deep neural architectures to identify patterns in agricultural, climate, environmental, and remotely sensed data, and to make practical inferences from research results.
  • Practical experience and working knowledge in a distributed computing system such as Spark, Hadoop and the ability to build automated workflows across machines and platforms in cloud computing environments.
  • Demonstrated experience using GitHub.
  • Familiarity with cloud storage providers (e.g. Google Cloud Platform, Amazon Web Services, Azure).
  • Familiarity with Docker containers.
  • Strong programming skills in R.
  • Knowledge of software development lifecycle and best practices (version control, code review, unit testing, continuous integration/delivery, etc.).
  • Knowledge of hardware set-up, integration, server set-up, and maintenance is beneficial.
  • High degree of cultural sensitivity and proven record of effective working relationships in multi-disciplinary, diverse teams particularly in developing countries.
  • Able to multitask and work within deadlines with minimum supervision.
  • Strong interpersonal skills, and the ability to work in multicultural and interdisciplinary teams.
  • Excellent communication skills and high proficiency in written and spoken English.

Desired Skills and Qualifications

  • Proven scientific writing skills with a record of accomplishment of high-quality scientific reports and experience in leading or co-authoring scientific journal articles.
  • Working knowledge of open-source web mapping tools (Geoserver, PostGreSQL, PostGIS, OpenLayers).
  • Experience with interactive visualization of data (dynamic graph, map) via online information systems.
  • Experience in mobile and digital approaches to research, data analysis and to support extension services.
  • Experience with mobile data collection tool using Open Data Kit (ODK), KoBoToolbox, or other mobile data collection platform.
  • Experience with R package development, API deployment, R Shiny development, and functional programming.
  • Ability to lead and facilitate field work and project research team in countries of WorldFish interest.
  • Ability and desire to travel and spend periods of time in the field/community level.
  • Desire and drive to work in a development and research context to alleviate poverty and eradicate malnutrition.


This is aNationally Recruited Staff (NRS)position and WorldFish offers a competitive remuneration package including comprehensive benefits (but not limited to) insurance coverage for staff and eligible dependents, 15% employer provident fund contribution, paid leave and others. The duration of the contract will initially be for atwo-year periodwith possibility for extension, depending on funding and performance.

How to Apply

Your application must include:

  • A cover letter which addresses key requirements stated above;
  • A current curriculum vitae; and
  • Contact information of three professional referees who may be contacted if you are short-listed for the position.

To be considered, applications must be submitted by no later than24:00 (MYT) 8 March 2023.

Location: The post holder will be based inPenang, Malaysia. This position will involve international travel.

The screening will startimmediatelyand will continue until the position is filled. Due to the high volume of applicants for WorldFish positions, we appreciate all interest, but only short-listed candidates will be contacted.

Our Gender, Diversity and Inclusion Commitment

WorldFish has 7 offices across Asia, Africa and the Pacific, with more than 400 staff and 27 nationalities who contribute to a dynamic multicultural work environment.

WorldFish is committed to promoting a work environment where diversity and inclusion is valued and we seek to have gender balance in the organization. We aim to also seek balance across other diversity dimensions.

People in WorldFish are treated equally irrespective of gender, ethnicity/race, national or social origin, disability, religion, political affiliation, age, family size, marital status or any other form of personal identity.

We are an equal opportunities employer and strongly encourage qualified women and men from developing nations to apply.

Click here to apply

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