Geospatial and Data Services Manager

  • Mid-level, Full-time staff position
  • Posted on 10 March 2020
  • Save for later

Job Description

Category: Program Support
Req ID: GEOSP01975
Posted Date: 2020-03-09
Schedule: Full Time
Location: Washington, DC 20015, United States USA


Creative Associates International (Creative) is a dynamic, fast-growing global development firm that specializes in education, economic growth, democratic institutions and stabilization. Based in Washington, D.C., Creative has a field presence in more than 25 countries with a strong client portfolio that includes the U.S. Agency for International Development and the State Department, among others. Since its founding in 1977, Creative has earned a solid reputation among its clients and is well-regarded by competitors and partners alike.

The Creative Development Lab (Lab) at Creative incubates and leverages information and communication technologies (ICT) for use in international development programs, for monitoring and evaluation, citizen security, community resiliency, workforce development, value-chain development, learning, training and more. The Lab focuses on data-centered solutions, Geographic Information Systems (GIS), financial technology, social media, and education technology.

The Data and Geospatial services support projects across all Creative practice areas to leverage data tools and data analysis to improve programmatic decision-making. The efforts of this work stream directly contribute to ensuring our projects are data-responsive and technologically aware.

Position Summary:

The Geospatial and Data Services Manager will lead geospatial and big data analysis and visualization in support of the firm’s programming. The Manager will have a strong background in quantitative and qualitative geographic analysis and visualization as well as a solid foundation in broader data management, analysis and visualization. Working closely with their teammates in the Creative Development Lab, the Manager will design and deploy geospatial and data solutions to support Creative’s projects from design to closeout. These solutions will leverage cutting edge geospatial and data technology to improve the efficiency and scale of Creative’s programs and improve strategic decision making. The Manager will also consult and advise on solutions for programs on how to best incorporate data and data visualization from external and internal data sources.

The Geospatial and Data Services Manager will engage in the Lab’s general support for technology for development at Creative. They will grasp local and regional technology ecosystems, identify and negotiate with tech product vendors and services firms, and employ a design thinking process to design solutions that are user-centered and in line with the Principles of Digital Development. This includes articulating, budgeting and presenting these solutions. For awarded projects, the Geospatial Services Manager will work with Lab members, and the project team to determine implementation plans and orchestrate and perform the Lab’s implementation scope.

The Geospatial Services Manager will bring experience in some of these areas and grow the capabilities of the Lab in the following:
  • Static and digital map production
  • Remote Sensing/Satellite imagery
  • Data Analysis
  • Data Visualization
  • Social Media Analytics
  • Social Network Analysis
  • Machine Learning
  • Community engagement/asset mapping
  • GIS tech for agriculture
  • Geographic Multi-Criteria Analysis
  • Data driven geographic targeting for a wide variety of programming
  • Survey tools

Some of the prior and current geospatial and data activities of the Lab have included targeting where sub-nationally programs focus, where to locate schools to minimize travel to school to increase attendance, monitoring construction using satellite imagery, developing big data and satellite imagery proxies for violence, analyzing social media for hate speech monitoring and violence early detection, developing big data sentinel indictors for monitoring project context, developing dashboards for adaptive management, supporting communities to map their assets for asset based community development, deploying systems for tracking and tracing delivery of books to schools and other physical aid, and more.

Reporting & Supervision:

The Geospatial and Data Services Manager will report to the Director of the Creative Development Lab. S/he will work closely with staff across the Creative Development Lab and other divisions. The position is based in Washington, DC, but some international travel may be required.

Expected Outcomes:
  • Creative projects and proposals better leverage geospatial technology and data for designing and implementing projects and activities;
  • Creative develops data driven capabilities for programming around new threats and opportunities such as for example disinformation;
  • Creative’s data systems are enhanced to provide standardized datasets across systems, incorporating industry standard datasets;
  • Local, regional and appropriate international data and GIS vendors are systematically vetted and employed in Creative programming supported by the Lab; relationships with these partners are nurtured to identify and realize areas for collaborative innovation; and
  • Creative’s experience, efforts and capabilities in employing geospatial and data solutions for development are recognizable in the international development community.

Primary Responsibilities:
  • Lead existing and new implementation of location data and other data-related activities in Creative programs;
  • Work with project teams to incorporate geospatial data analysis, spatial analysis and mapping tools for program design and service targeting;
  • Assist project teams with the production of maps as needed;
  • Drive innovation through technology by supporting business development activities and successful use of technology in current projects;
  • Work with program personnel to understand their business development priorities and establish and implement strategy for location information-related capture research;
  • Integrate in business development efforts by reviewing local data ecosystems, conducting capture research in the field, conceptualizing solutions, and writing proposal sections and budgets, as needed;
  • Provide technical direction to define data driven approaches and activities across Creative’s programs;
  • Vet and compare technology vendors; develop and maintain strong working relationships with technology partners; manage existing Lab vendors that provide data and location intelligence solutions;
  • Design data solutions in response to opportunities, and in accordance with the Principles for Digital Development;
  • Serve as the main point person from the Lab with ICT field staff to determine GIS and data solutions that can improve the effectiveness, scale and efficiency of their activities;
  • Serve as main point person from the Lab to integrate Lab data activities with existing Creative monitoring and evaluation tools;
  • Stay current on how data-analysis tools and other technology is elsewhere being used effectively in development, evidence of impact, and potential for new technology that can be applied in Creative’s programming;
  • Maintain working knowledge of company administrative, financial and operating systems and procedures; and
  • Contribute to action research and thought leadership in relevant external circles on geospatial and data solutions in development.

Required Skills & Qualifications:
  • Master’sdegreein a relevant fieldand minimum five (5) years of relevant work experience; orbachelor’sdegreein a relevant fieldand minimum seven (7) years of relevant work experience;
  • Degree preferably in quantitative social sciences (e.g. Geography, Economics, Political Science) or in a data field (e.g. Data Science, Computer Science) or related field;
  • Familiarity with Information & Communication Technology for Development;
  • Experience with data management and designing data workflows;
  • Familiarity with monitoring and evaluation for international development;
  • Highly Proficient in a Geospatial Information Software (e.g. ArcGIS, QGIS, GRASS, etc.);
  • Proficient in statistical software (e.g. R, SPSS, STATA);
  • Sharp ability to discern client problems and opportunities;
  • Strong relationshipmanagementandinterpersonalcommunication skills;
  • Demonstrated ability to lead initiatives and drive organizational change;
  • Confident negotiator who can identify, compare and vet tech vendors;
  • Experience with design approaches, and ability to facilitate designing of solutions;
  • Strong formal writing and editing skills;
  • Ability to develop and monitor project budgets, work plans and other management and reporting instruments;
  • Solid organizational and administrative skills;
  • Ability to work well in a team environment and to multi-task under tight deadlines;
  • Ability to work independently;
  • Ability to work on multiple projects with multiple supervisors; and
  • Proactive and positive attitude.

Desired Skills & Qualifications:
  • Experience with data analysis for decision-making;
  • Experience communicating data to non-technical audiences;
  • Field experience in an international development setting;
  • Fluency in a second language is highly preferred—Arabic, French or Spanish would be an asset; and
  • Knowledge and experience working with USAID structure and assistance mechanisms.

Equal Opportunity Employer/Protected Veterans/Individuals with Disabilities

The contractor will not discharge or in any other manner discriminate against employees or applicants because they have inquired about, discussed, or disclosed their own pay or the pay of another employee or applicant. However, employees who have access to the compensation information of other employees or applicants as a part of their essential job functions cannot disclose the pay of other employees or applicants to individuals who do not otherwise have access to compensation information, unless the disclosure is (a) in response to a formal complaint or charge, (b) in furtherance of an investigation, proceeding, hearing, or action, including an investigation conducted by the employer, or (c) consistent with the contractor’s legal duty to furnish information. 41 CFR 60-1.35(c)


About the Organization

Creative Associates International (Creative) is a dynamic and fast-growing professional services firm that specializes in international development in the areas of education, democratic transitions and stabilization in post-conflict environments. Based in Washington, D.C., the firm has field presence in 20 countries worldwide with a strong and diverse portfolio that includes global contracts with the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) and other clients including the U.S. Department of State and the U.S. Department of Defense. The firm has earned a solid reputation among its clients and missions worldwide and is well-regarded by competitors and partners alike.

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