Local recruitment: Junior Data Scientist

The World Bank
Washington, DC, United States
Position Type: 
Organization Type: 
International Organization
Experience Level: 
0-2 Years
Degree Required: 
Advanced Degree (Master's or JD)


Please note: this job post has expired! To the best of our knowledge, this job is no longer available and this page remains here for archival purposes only.


About the World Bank Group:

Established in 1944, the WBG is one of the world’s largest sources of funding and knowledge for development solutions. In fiscal year 2018, the WBG committed $67 billion in loans, grants, equity investments and guarantees to its members and private businesses, of which $24 billion was concessional finance to its poorest members. It is governed by 188-member countries and delivers services out of 120 offices with nearly 15,000 staff located globally. 

The WBG consists of five specialized institutions: the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD), the International Development Association (IDA), the International Finance Corporation (IFC), the Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA), and the International Centre for the Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID). The World Bank is organized into six client-facing Regional Vice-Presidencies, several corporate functions and thirteen Global Practices to bring best-in-class knowledge and solutions to regional and country clients.

DECDG houses the World Bank’s main Data Team, including the Secretariat of the Development Data Council (DDC), a data governance body that coordinates the World Bank Group’s approach to data, in support of the objectives to eradicate extreme poverty and promote shared prosperity. This position is in the Indicators & Services (DECIS) unit of DECDG. This team manages various high-quality data outputs, including the World Development Indicators (WDI) database, sub-national databases, and the World Bank’s data catalogue – the institutional hub where Bank’s data assets are stored and shared with both internal and external users.

The selected candidate will work with the Sustainable Development Statistics (SDS) team which is responsible for collecting and publishing reliable, high-quality statistics on demography, education, environment, finance and markets, health, labor, and poverty.  The advertised position will focus on improving data, methods, documentation, and the dissemination of environment related indicators in the WDI. The WDI is an important public resource and attracts considerable interest with around 13 million unique visitors each year, its users including analysts, policymakers, students, academics, program managers, and all those curious about the state of the world - to find data related to all aspects of development, both historical and current, and to follow trends and monitor progress towards a host of goals and targets. The WDI is an important source of information on countries’ trajectories towards the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The SDGs’ strong focus on the environment and sustainability (e.g., Goals 6 on water, 7 on energy, 11 on sustainable cities, 12 on sustainable consumption, 13 on climate change, 14 on life under water, 15 on life above water) and the corresponding indicators place new demands on reporting on international environmental statistics. The selected candidate therefore would be expected to involve working on these areas, with a strong focus on geospatial data.

Note: If the selected candidate is a current Bank Group staff member with a Regular or Open-Ended appointment, s/he will retain his/her Regular or Open-Ended appointment. All others will be offered a 3-year term appointment

Selection Criteria

Formal Requirements

  • A Masters or higher degree in statistics, economics, geography or environment related fields (e.g. agriculture, climate change, environment & natural resources, etc.) with a strong quantitative and computational background, computer/data science. 
  • At least two years of working experience in development/environment policy and statistics.

Technical Requirements

  • Technical experience in various aspects of data science - a creative problem solver with strong skills in design and problem formulation; data curation; data acquisition, cleaning and management; data interpretation and analysis; and the presentation and communication of results in an engaging and reproducible manner.
  • Experience in statistics and econometrics.
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills in English with ability to translate research findings into policy relevant language.
  • Strong technical knowledge of one or more domains of sustainable development data such as agriculture, climate change, environment & natural resources, and water.
  • Excellent working knowledge of modern statistics, scripting and programming languages such as STATA or R and Python and associated software libraries. 
  • Expertise in at least one GIS analysis software, such as QGIS or ArcGIS
  • Knowledge of SQL, database systems, and the management of data in enterprise environments. Working knowledge of data visualization tools such as D3 and Tableau is an advantage.

Soft Skills

  • Analytical skills: ability to think strategically and rapidly analyze, interpret and integrate data information from varied sources into clear conclusions and recommendations.
  • Communication skills: strong writing and data presentation skills, including data visualization.
  • Ability to produce quality work with a high degree of accuracy and attention to detail. 
  • Self-starter: ability to take the initiative and work independently.
  • Strong team work orientation, good interpersonal skills, and a proven ability to work effectively with a range of clients and colleagues.
  • Enthusiasm for, and commitment to, development and data work.


  • Communication: communicate to effectively share and exchange information. Able to listen actively, obtain necessary input, share ideas, speak persuasively, and convey information in a clear, objective, and concise manner 
  • Collaboration within teams and across boundaries: collaborate and work with others across organizational boundaries, both internally and externally, in order to achieve the best results for clients; maintain a WBG corporate mindset above an individual or team perspective 
  • Leadership and innovation: take initiative, and be persistent in their drive for results; seek opportunities to improve and find innovative solutions to problems; inspire and encourage others to have a positive attitude and impact; be able to adapt to changing circumstances, and be bold to increase the Bank’s Group’s effectiveness. 
  • Smart decision making: balance the need for making empirically-based sound decisions with a sense of urgency by making quick, timely, and relevant decisions; be good problem solvers. 
  • Client understanding and advising: strive to add value to clients in the business; understand the critical forces that shape clients’ needs.

Other Competencies:

Results for clients: address the needs and challenges of clients; hold themselves accountable and take personal ownership for identifying and managing risks and delivering evidence-based results. 

Knowledge creation, application, and sharing:

share their expertise; create and contribute to the WBG’s body of knowledge; and efficiently reflect and draw on lessons from colleagues; expand their professional networks in their areas of expertise.  

Broad business thinking: solicit information on WBG/VPU direction, goals and industry competitive environment to determine how own area can add value to the organization and to clients. Makes decisions and recommendations clearly linked to the organization's strategy and financial goals. 

Project management: plans, organizes, monitors and controls projects and tasks using appropriate tools, methodologies and processes.  

Analytical thinking: able to breakdown raw information and undefined problems into specific, workable components that in-turn clearly identify the issues at hand. Make logical conclusions, anticipate obstacles and consider different approaches that are relevant to the decision-making process. 

Policies and procedure: understand and apply relevant policies and procedures in executing responsibilities.  

Risks and controls: assess risks and maintain an effective and efficient internal control environment. Able to identify and assess risks, including identification of mitigating controls.