See job eligibility requirements: Senior Adviser- Citizen Science (Natural Capital and Ecosystem Assessment Lead)

Natural England

England, UK 🇬🇧

Reference number




Job grade

Senior Executive Officer

Senior Adviser

Contract type

Fixed Term

Length of employment

Until 31st March 2025

Type of role

Environment and Sustainability

Working pattern

Full-time, Job share, Part-time

Number of jobs available



East Midlands (England), East of England, London (region), North East England, North West England, South East England, South West England, West Midlands (England), Yorkshire and the Humber

About the job

Job summary

This position is based nationally

Job description

The team  

The Evidence Team within the Chief Scientist’s Directorate provides scientific and evidence leadership, services and support to help Natural England operate as an evidence-led organisation. The Team is responsible for delivering Natural England’s part of the Natural Capital and Ecosystem Assessment (NCEA). The NCEA is a transformative programme to understand the extent, condition and change over time of environmental assets across England’s land and water environments, supporting the government’s ambition to improve the environment within a generation. Data will come from Earth Observation, professional field data collection, citizen science and partner data sets.

Natural England’s NCEA pilot is organised into projects:

  1. Mapping and Earth Observation – Spatial data and maps on natural capital to inform national and local decision making and delivery.
  2. Data mobilisation – Making NCEA, partner and volunteer data available for analysis, integration and use.
  3. Field data collection – Data on habitats, soils, landscapes and species to understand the condition of natural capital assets.
  4. Citizen science – Working with citizens and community science to fill gaps, provide local and landscape scale information and engaging the public.
  5. Data integration and reporting – Producing high quality evidence products by analysing and integration NCEA data.
  6. Programme management – Managing Natural England’s NCEA programme.
  7. England Peat Map – Mapping the extent and condition of England’s peatlands.

Job description  

This role will focus on delivering Natural England’s contribution to the Defra Citizen Science Project. It is one of several projects being undertaken as part of the wider, Defra funded, Natural Capitol and Ecosystem Assessment (NCEA) programme. The programme aims to advance the capability and capacity of our monitoring and evidence to inform societal choices impacting environmental and nature recovery.

The Citizen Science Project aims to explore and respond to opportunities and challenges for citizen science to become a more integral part of our strategic monitoring programme. How we can advance the capacity and capability of the public to study and record data about nature and the environment. How our projects and programmes can make more premeditative use of public study to collect data on nature and the environment.  

The post holder will deliver to the objectives of our Citizen Science Strategy, working with colleagues in JNCC, EA, Defra and Forest Research to co-ordinate work in this area. The role will require the applicant to demonstrate a strong ability to establish, build, and manage collaborative internal and external partnerships, working to common goals and managing conflicting objectives. Applicants will need to demonstrate broader thought leadership; with the ability to see the bigger picture and to contribute outside their specialism.

Key tasks and principal accountabilities:

Working with the Defra Group and external partners and internal teams across Natural England. Specifically, the postholder will;

  • Deliver to the Objectives of the Defra group developed Citizen Science Strategy and the NE specific work by setting and demonstrating key milestones are met.
  • Review potential and support the implementation of new technologies and techniques to generate citizen science data for the NCEA, including addressing gaps in current provision.
  • Engage with external partners to identify and develop opportunities for citizen science projects that demonstrate, innovate, and test new approaches to address needs for the NCEA.
  • Facilitate partnership building with stakeholders and communities.
  • Collaborate within the team, across internal NCEA workstreams and NE policy areas where citizen science data will be integrated.

Skills and Knowledge

  • Excellent project and contract management – essential
  • Excellent written and verbal communications – essential
  • Good track record of partnership working – essential
  • Experience of working with and functionally leading others to achieve joint outcomes and innovation – essential
  • Experience and knowledge of citizen science and working with volunteers – desirable
  • Knowledge of environmental monitoring and new technologies – desirable

The post holder will need to show flexibility in taking on and managing other work should team priorities or resources change.

This post will involve some national (England) travel to internal NE and Defra meetings, and meetings with stakeholders and contractors.


Competence 1  

Professional competency


Leading and managing people (practitioner)


  • Lead by example, engage and support your team through change
    • Set clear plans and expectations for your team, explain reasons behind decisions, be clear on the outcomes to be achieved, and make things happen by sharing and delegating work to the right people
    • Encourage, inspire and support people to be ambitious, creative and innovative, and to reflect, celebrate and learn lessons from their work

Competence 2  

Professional competency


Putting people at the heart (practitioner)


  • Nurture trusting partnerships and collaborate to achieve pragmatic outcomes that help deliver Natural England’s vision, mission and aims
    • Listen to and understand our diverse partners and customers so that you achieve the best outcomes for them and Natural England
    • Understand and explain the outcomes that we seek and how these fit in with local and national issues

Competence 3  

Professional competency


Work delivery (practitioner)


  • See the big picture so you can set your team’s work within the context of the organisation’s vision, mission and aims, and help them understand how their work relates to and supports this
    • Identify priority evidence needs and seek ways to meet them (eg. through funding or partnerships).
    • Manage and deliver your work to meet agreed targets and deadlines.

Competence 4  

Professional competency


Personal effectiveness (practitioner)


  • Act with integrity, addressing challenging issues and managing conflict through being open and objective
    • Be ambitious, identify and adopt ways to make improvements in your team and Natural England and inspire others to act
    • Share expertise and knowledge with people and networks so that you can develop together
    • Make and explain objective decisions which combine your professional judgement and evidence

Competence 5  

Professional competency


Technical knowledge and skills (STAR format not required)


  • Able to swiftly build an excellent understanding of the range of evidence used in Natural England and the business context within which it is used.
    • Understanding and experience with Citizen Science/volunteer programmes, data collected and its’ application to scientific questions
    • Effective problem solving and negotiation of solutions in challenging circumstances.
    • An understanding of intellectual property/data licensing/memorandums of agreement or a field with similar technical and legal requirements is desirable
    • Experience of biological survey or a biological/ecological background is desirable.
    • Strong IT skills are essential. 

Person specification

Please refer to Job Description


  • Learning and development tailored to your role
  • An environment with flexible working options
  • A culture encouraging inclusion and diversity
  • Civil Service pension with an average employer contribution of 27%

Things you need to know

Selection process details

Please refer to Job Description

Feedback will only be provided if you attend an interview or assessment.


Successful candidates must undergo a criminal record check.

People working with government assets must complete baseline personnel security standard (opens in new window) checks.

Nationality requirements

This job is broadly open to the following groups:

  • UK nationals
  • nationals of Commonwealth countries who have the right to work in the UK
  • nationals of the Republic of Ireland
  • nationals from the EU, EEA or Switzerland with settled or pre-settled status or who apply for either status by the deadline of the European Union Settlement Scheme (EUSS) (opens in a new window)
  • relevant EU, EEA, Swiss or Turkish nationals working in the Civil Service
  • relevant EU, EEA, Swiss or Turkish nationals who have built up the right to work in the Civil Service
  • certain family members of the relevant EU, EEA, Swiss or Turkish nationals

Further information on nationality requirements (opens in a new window)

Working for the Civil Service

The Civil Service Code (opens in a new window) sets out the standards of behaviour expected of civil servants.

We recruit by merit on the basis of fair and open competition, as outlined in the Civil Service Commission’s recruitment principles (opens in a new window).

The Civil Service embraces diversity and promotes equal opportunities. As such, we run a Disability Confident Scheme (DCS) for candidates with disabilities who meet the minimum selection criteria.

Apply and further information

The Civil Service welcomes applications from people who have recently left prison or have an unspent conviction. Read more about prison leaver recruitment (opens in new window).

Once this job has closed, the job advert will no longer be available. You may want to save a copy for your records.

Contact point for applicants

Job contact :

  • Name :Rachel Tebbs
  • Email
  • Telephone :07767939214

Recruitment team :

  • Email

Further information


Candidate Pack Natural England v1.5 Opens in new window(docx, 1319kB)




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