Job description

Job Description

Location: Melbourne | CBD

Job type: Full time

Organisation: Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning

Salary: $102,637 - $124,183

Occupation: Science

Reference: VG/50942074A

Fantastic opportunity to develop, deploy, and manage predictive and machine learning models to support strategic and operational decision making to reduce the impact of bushfires on public land.

Data Insights is a multi-disciplinary specialised in-house data team, providing a range of centralised services, including business intelligence reporting, predictive analytics, and data management, to Forest, Fire and Regions Group and Victoria's land and emergency management partner agencies. Data Insights is transforming the way Forest, Fire and Regions Group uses data to support its role in creating safe, liveable, inclusive, and sustainable communities, and thriving natural environments.

We are seeking a Data Scientist to join our growing data science team to help develop, deploy, and manage predictive and machine learning models to support strategic and operational decision making to reduce the impact of bushfires on public land. This position will provide technical support to a variety of projects, including lightning strike ignition and fuel moisture machine learning models, operational cost forecasting and aerial firefighting fleet impact assessment. The role will also be encouraged to pitch and develop projects aligned with FFR's strategic priority of leveraging science, technology, and data analytics to enhance preparedness, response and recovery, efficiency, and effectiveness to reduce bushfire risk.

About You
You are passionate about data and are someone who can see the big picture, while having mastery of the details. You are a self-starter and an excellent communicator, and you love taking initiative and pioneering new and creative ideas. You are confident and comfortable working with ambiguity and uncertainty. Ideally you should have a tertiary qualification in data science, mathematics, statistics, economics, or related fields.

This is a technical role and while we don't expect you to have experience with our entire technology stack, the successful candidate will have some experience and a general enthusiasm for our development environment.

  • Most of our predictive models and exploratory analysis is done in either R or python. We love R, Shiny, the tidyverse and everything it has to offer. We also love python if that is more your style.
  • Our cloud computing environment is in Azure where we deploy Linux Virtual Machines to host projects, connect to SQLServer databases, and retrieve data from storage containers.
  • We have recently moved into docker and find it to be fantastic
  • Version control is maintained through github

Ideally, we are looking for a candidate with some solid technical skills who knows their way around a supervised learning problem and finds the intersection of math and emergency management to be a tantalisingly exciting prospect.

About Us
Data Insights is a highly supportive team environment, with a culture which values connection, collaboration, curiosity, and authenticity.

The team comprises a mix of data engineers, data scientists, analysts, and BI developers who work together to solve challenging problems in Victoria's bushfire, emergency, and land management sector.

Specialist/Technical Expertise/Qualifications


  • Has formal credentials and/or qualifications in data science, mathematics, statistics, economics, or related fields.
  • Demonstrated experience developing and deploying an operational machine learning model in R and/or Python
  • Strong quantitative analysis skills, and a proven track record of applying those skills to data in a professional setting.
  • Working knowledge of relational databases, SQL, and extracting data from production systems.
  • Demonstrated ability to develop and maintain consultative and collaborative relationships with internal and external stakeholders.


  • Experience using R, Python, and SQLServer in production level machine learning and predictive modelling applications including tools and packages such as: RStudio Server, Shiny, Tidy Models, Random Forests/Ranger, and XGBoost.
  • Experience with our technology stack including Docker, Linux, Microsoft Azure and SQLServer
  • Collaboratively built and maintained code using version control software (e.g. GIT)
  • Experience with satellite and remote sensing data

This is an ongoing position.

To be considered for this position, your application should include an up-to-date resume [maximum three pages] which clearly details your skills and experience as relevant to this role.

For further information please refer to the attached position description.

Applications close at midnight on Thursday, 21 October 2021.

Other relevant information:

Preferred candidates will be required to undertake pre-employment screening, including a Declaration and Consent form and a National Police Check.

Applicants must possess corresponding work rights to be eligible for appointment for the advertised employment period. To be appointed to an ongoing position you must be an Australian Permanent Resident or an Australian/New Zealand citizen.

We are building an inclusive workplace to help realise the potential of our employees, embrace our differences, and apply our diverse thinking to innovation and delivering services to Victorian communities. All jobs can be worked flexibly and we encourage job applications from Aboriginal people, people with disabilities, young people and people from culturally diverse backgrounds.

For further information including the position description, key selection criteria and to apply visit

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