Research Data Scientist – Durham, NC

Research Data Scientist

The Center for Data Science at RTI International, one of the nation’s largest independent, nonprofit scientific research organizations, is seeking a Research Data Scientist with skills in advanced analytics (predictive modeling, machine learning, AI, microsimulation modeling, social network analysis, computer vision, text analytics, and natural language processing), modern software development for data science applications, and data visualization to work on projects in a variety of research domains, including public health, bioinformatics, criminal and social justice, public safety, survey science, engineering, education, and the environment. RTI’s mission is to improve the human condition, and our Center’s mission is to apply data science for social good. A successful candidate will work with a thriving team of 25+ data scientists, software developers, visual designers, and subject matter experts across RTI, solving important national problems, improving our local communities, and transforming research.


  • Collaborate with a team of data scientists, software developers, visual designers, and subject matter experts to solve end-to-end problems using data science approaches, techniques, and methods
  • Participate in and lead projects that involve accessing, collecting, cleaning, storing, organizing, and integrating data, and creating data pipelines
  • Participate in and lead projects involving descriptive and exploratory analyses, predictive modeling, machine learning, microsimulation, text analytics, natural language processing, social network analysis, computer vision, and interactive data visualizations
  • Assist in expanding our data science business: participate in meetings with clients (internal and external), assist in framing projects and designing solutions based on client needs and problems to be solved
  • Create internal and publicly available data products and tools
  • Communicate results through presentations and reports for clients, internal staff, scientific journals, professional conferences, and contributions to open source projects
  • Collaborate with teams in proposal writing
  • Participate in professional development and scientific stature efforts


  • Degree in computer science, data science, statistics, applied mathematics, engineering, operations research, economics or related quantitative field
  • A master’s degree and a minimum of 3 years of relevant experience
  • Experience outside of a classroom environment with any of these: machine learning, natural language processing, computer vision, and microsimulation modeling
  • Strong interpersonal and collaboration skills, including oral and written communication as evidenced by publications, conference presentations, blog posts, videos, or cover letter
  • Experience with modern open source software ecosystems in python or R used in advanced analytics and data science, including data visualization
  • Experience with SQL
  • To qualify, applicants must be legally authorized to work in the United States and should not require now, or in the future, sponsorship for employment visa status

Desired Skills/Experience

  • Experience accessing, extracting, integrating, creating pipelines, and analyzing data from a wide variety of sources (e.g., relational databases, text and unstructured data, sensor data, social media data, image and video data, streaming data).
  • Ability to quickly and easily learn new software packages
  • An analytical mindset for solving problems
  • A strong sense of conceptual and visual design and creative problem solving
  • Experience navigating and scripting in a Unix command line environment
  • Experience with containerization technologies (Docker)
  • Familiarity with traditional RDBMS setup and administration, including MySQL, PostgreSQL, and SQLite
  • Experience using git for shared version control and collaboration
  • Experience in cluster and cloud computing environments
  • Experience working with agile software development methodologies
  • Subject matter expertise in any of these: public health, bioinformatics, criminal and social justice, public safety, education and workforce, survey science, environment, food safety, and engineering.

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