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Senior Research Associate - Geospatial Data Science

Lancaster Environment Centre
Salary:   £34,189 to £39,609
Closing Date:   Monday 08 July 2019
Interview Date:   To be confirmed
Reference:  A2700

We seek a one-year Senior Research Associate (EPSRC Impact Acceleration Account (IAA) Fellow) to work in Lancaster Environment Centre and drive knowledge transfer to Ordnance Survey (the British National Mapping Agency). This EPSRC IAA project will build on previous research undertaken during a PhD project titled: “Deep Learning in Massive Area, Multi-scale Resolution Remotely Sensed Imagery” funded by Ordnance Survey and Lancaster University. In particular, by further generalising the methods to wider geographical areas and demonstrating how to integrate these into the Ordnance Survey image processing pipeline through knowledge transfer.

You will work with the Geospatial Data Science Research Group at Lancaster and the Business Change & Innovation (BC&I) team at Ordnance Survey in a collaborative approach to develop highly accurate, robust, and transferable processes for land use mapping. This project will use aerial imagery primarily, and satellite sensor imagery where appropriate, in combination with land use information in vector form provided by Ordnance Survey. The project will train and apply a deep neural network that flexibly uses multivariate/multisource data to identify land use. In addition, the deep neural networks will integrate with an object-based image analysis (OBIA) approach to ensure sharp delineations of relevant objects (notably buildings, roads, waterways). Crucially, you will lead the development of a repository of code for use by Ordnance Survey staff to apply the object-based deep neural network approach to new unseen data. This will prioritise the requirements of the user at Ordnance Survey to ensure the use of the software well beyond the contracted period.

We are looking to appoint a researcher with experience in analysing large remotely sensed images (e.g., time-series analysis, image classification), and the development and application of modern spatial data science methods, including machine learning and deep learning algorithms. a desirable candidate would have skills in software engineering to make a usable workflow for Ordnance Survey, which would use industry best practices such as version control and test-driven development. This will involve working directly with Ordnance Survey for part of the year to develop a real business case as part of the business chain, and conduct consultancies with UK government with new information on land use features and their dynamics to support decision-making.

For more information on the partner organisation Ordnance Survey, please see the further particulars and the website for OS

We offer a highly inclusive and stimulating environment for career development. We are committed to family-friendly and flexible working policies on an individual basis, as well as the Athena SWAN Charter, which recognises and celebrates good employment practice undertaken to address gender equality in higher education and research.

This is a one-year post in the first instance, subject to funding. Informal enquiries can be addressed to the Dean of the Faculty of Science and Technology, Professor Peter M. Atkinson (tel. 01524 595203,

We welcome applications from people in all diversity groups.

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