UKRI – NERC – BGS
The role is based at the Geological Survey of Northern Ireland in Belfast
Appointment will be at UKRI Pay Band C
Pay Band C salary is from £25,702 per annum to £27,938 per annum
Full-time – 37 hours a week (a range of flexible working options may be available including hybrid working, which BGS is currently trialling)
Fixed Term Appointment – 3 years
The British Geological Survey (BGS) is an applied geoscience research centre that is part of UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) and affiliated to the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC). It is a world leading geological survey that provides a core science mission to inform government of science related to the subsurface and its interfaces and also undertakes applied research for solutions to earth and environmental processes, both in the UK and globally. It is funded directly by UKRI as well as through research grants and via private sector contracts.
The Geological Survey of Northern Ireland (GSNI) provides a hydrogeological advice service to the Northern Ireland government and public on matters relating to groundwater resources, groundwater protection and catchment science.
This is primarily facilitated through three Service Level Agreements (SLA) with the Department for the Economy, The Northern Ireland Environment Agency and Northern Ireland Water. GSNI also provides support to hydrogeology and groundwater science projects across the rest of the British Geological Survey (BGS) when required.
A vacancy has arisen for a highly motivated and enthusiastic Hydrogeologist the GSNI offices in Belfast.
About the role
This is a key role within the GSNI team and will support the delivery of a new strategy for the GSNI. The vision of the strategy is for the GSNI to be recognised as Northern Ireland’s leading provider of geoscience information and impartial advice; responding to the needs of society, policy-makers and industry. The post holder will be primarily working to address the challenges of the Natural Resources and Energy Transition, and Environmental Change and Geohazards programmes. They will support the work of demonstrating the potential for geothermal heating and cooling via shallow and deep pilots, characterising the properties and availability of groundwater resources to build a data-led evidence base for sustainable groundwater use, and enhancing our knowledge of the role groundwater plays within integrated catchments in Northern Ireland.
Activities will include responsibility for the Northern Ireland Groundwater Data Repository; a database of groundwater data that requires updating with all new data lodged with the GSNI and exporting of data queries for enquiries and research. The postholder will also be required to design and implement groundwater fieldwork activities. These will include site walkover surveys, supervising borehole drilling, groundwater sampling, groundwater level monitoring and logger management, surface geophysics, karst feature mapping, pumping tests and the installation of shallow piezometers. They will need to be comfortable with the management and analysis of all forms of hydrogeological data.
You should be educated to 2:1 or above in a relevant geoscience or engineering degree and have either an MSc in hydrogeology, environmental studies or a related subject, or a PhD in a hydrogeology-related subject. In addition, you should have the following knowledge/skills/experience:
- Knowledge of Northern Ireland’s Hydrogeology in the context of UK and Ireland hydrogeology.
- The ability to manipulate and visualise large environmental datasets using packages such as R or Matlab, MS Access and ArcGIS.
- An interest in working with large datasets to extract information to support innovative research.
- Good knowledge of hydrogeological processes and their influence on groundwater resources and application to environmental problems.
- Knowledge and experience of environmental field monitoring and hydraulic property measurement.
- Experience in the design of groundwater field investigations.
- Experience in developing hydrogeological conceptual models.
- Excellent communication skills, both oral and written.
- You should be able to work effectively both independently and as part of a team.
To meet the aim of the GSNI strategy, the post holder will need to communicate groundwater science effectively in a variety of media. Alongside participating in relevant meetings and events, they will be expected to seek out both written and verbal opportunities to actively promote Northern Ireland’s groundwater resources.
The work will mostly be Northern Ireland based, but there may also be opportunities to work in the rest of the UK and Ireland as well as potentially overseas for short periods. Consequently, a requirement of the role is the ability to undertake periods of fieldwork both in the UK, Ireland and internationally. A valid driving licence and willingness to drive is required.
Please also refer to the specific essential and desirable skills criteria for this post, against which, you should provide evidence for.
What we offer
A generous benefits package is also offered, including a very competitive pension scheme, 30 days annual leave plus bank holidays, free parking and access to flexi-time.
All staff have access to a platform of learning and development opportunities and where appropriate to the role, technical/specialist training.
We also offer the ‘Bike to Work’ scheme, health and wellbeing support, social clubs and on-site sports facilities.
Please note that any internal BGS staff applying for this post would, if successful, be appointed to new UKRI Terms and Conditions and pay.
How to apply
Applicants are required to include a cover letter outlining their suitability for this role. We would stress the importance of this paperwork in our selection process. A well thought through application addressing the advertised essential and desirable criteria for the post will be considered far more favourably than a generic covering letter and CV.
Applications are being handled by UK Shared Business Services, to apply please click on the apply button. Applicants who are unable to apply online should contact us by telephone on +44 (0)1793 867000.
Closing date for receipt of applications is 3 October 2021. Interviews are expected to be held in mid to late October 2021, and will include a presentation from the candidate for which they will be notified about in advance.
BGS provides a range of flexible working options including flexible working patterns, compressed hours and home working so if you have a need for flexibility, please raise this in the recruitment process when your needs, balanced with the requirements of the role, will be fully considered.
We are committed to promoting equality and diversity across our organisation as well as across all areas of our science community. As such, we aim to have a workforce with employees from all backgrounds with people who are passionate about earth science and who share our commitment to work for the good of the environment and the benefit of society.
We will actively seek to avoid discrimination on the grounds of age, disability, race (including colour, nationality, ethnic or national origin), sex or sexual orientation, being trans or a member of the non-binary community, being married or in a civil partnership, being pregnant or on maternity leave or religion.
The British Geological Survey has achieved Bronze status for Athena SWAN – a scheme that recognises an organisation’s commitment and progress in developing a diverse and inclusive workforce.