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IBAT Software Developer

Vacancy #:   6844
Unit:   Biodiversity Assessment and Knowledge
Organisation:   International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN)
Location:   Cambridge Office, Cambridge, United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
Reporting to:   IBAT Lead Software Architect
Work percentage:   100%
Grade:   P2
Expected start date:   01 July 2024
Type of contract:   Indefinite
Closing date:   26 May 2024
Nature is declining globally at rates unprecedented in human history. 1 million animal and plant species are now threatened with extinction, many within decades, more than ever before in human history. The biodiversity crisis is one of the biggest global challenges facing the world today, not only for the planet in general but also for business: more than 50% of the world’s GDP is dependent on biodiversity.

The Integrated Biodiversity Assessment Tool (IBAT) is at the forefront of the business and biodiversity space, providing practical solutions to the business and finance community. Supported by experts from 4 of the most influential conservation organisations, you will empower decision makers from global companies across a variety of sectors to incorporate authoritative biodiversity into their operational processes. You will provide critical support to one of the key platforms that companies use to understand and manage their relationship with biodiversity. Using your development skills and knowledge, you will help ensure IBAT remains the world’s most authoritative biodiversity tool and continues to evolve to meet the emerging needs of a rapidly changing disclosure landscape. IBAT has a rapidly growing client base; we currently support over 200 organisations such as the World Bank Group, Google, Rio Tinto, and Nestlé, and with the growing interest in biodiversity from the private sector continues to grow year on year.

IBAT is the product of a ground-breaking alliance between four major conservation organisations; BirdLife International, Conservation International, the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) and UN Environment Programme World Conservation Monitoring Centre (UNEP-WCMC). Trends in species extinction risk would have been at least 20% worse in the absence of conservation action showing the importance of conservation. IBAT integrates data from core global biodiversity datasets – the World Database on Protected Areas, World Database of Key Biodiversity Areas, and the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species – into a single portal to support decision makers from industry, finance, and governments. The revenue IBAT generates is crucial in ensuring that these global public good datasets have a sustainable future – in FY2023 IBAT sent US$1.2 million to our partners.
We are looking for a developer who would be a keen self-motivated technology enthusiast, who is not daunted by trying out new technologies and be able to think outside the box, with an eye for optimisation, performance, security and understand the complexities of data management. The developer would be expected to work independently and manage the full-stack of a critical web application - and should be confident working under the guidance of the IBAT Lead Software Architect, who oversees the ongoing development of the web application.

Main responsibilities

• Ownership mindset for maintaining and developing the IBAT platform and technical process. We are a small but dedicated team; your contribution will make a difference.
• Scope, architect and implement new features
• Implementation robust set of services and APIs and consume external ones
• Implementation of secure systems and data protection
• Integrate unit and feature testing as part of development process, specifically using test driven development (TDD)
• Learning new technologies and take responsibility of pushing best new software best practise into IBAT.
• Strong focus on the customers and their needs.
• Analyse, manipulate and transform large geo spatial vector and raster datasets to support the needs of the IBAT tool
• Work effectively in a small, cross disciplinary team to support a range of goals and objectives
• Articulate and explain technical concepts to a range of audiences
• Advise and collaborate with external developers regarding integration of IBAT Datasets into existing or proposed third party tools
• Contribute ideas and new approaches to development goals, you will have a considerable influence as the team is small but growing.
  • Essential:

• A good first degree or higher in Computer Science / Software Engineering or similar field
• Minimum 2 years commercial experience in a software development team
• Strong experience with Geographic Information Systems.
• Strong experience in Ruby on Rails development.
• Experience in front-end development with experience in HTML, CSS/SASS and JavaScript
• Experience with JavaScript frameworks.
• Comfortable using Git.
• Delivering projects in an Agile environment
• Demonstrable knowledge of using relational database, and good with database design (PostgreSQL)
• Experience using modern web frameworks
• Experience using cloud-based services
• Web Mapping experience (using PostGIS, CartoDB or ArcGIS, and front-end mapping technologies such as Leaflet / Mapbox/ OpenLayers and the likes)
• Track record of driving change and taking ownership of systems
• Fluency in English (Writing, speaking, Listening)


• Conservation expertise, with experience working for a conservation NGO
• Continuous integration and deployment experience.
• Vue.js experience
• DevOps experience.
• Other languages

Other Skills

• Experience of managing positive relationships with multiple teams / external teams
• Ability to prioritise work, and define proper working patterns
• Experience working with complex biodiversity databases/datasets.
• Ability and motivation to deliver high quality work with minimum supervision
• Flexible approach to managing high workload with multiple tasks in a changing environment
• Excellent interpersonal and oral communication skills
• Logical, practical and creative approach to problem solving.

Applicants are requested to apply online through the HR Management System, by opening the vacancy announcement and pressing the "Apply" button.

Applicants will be asked to create an account and submit their profile information. Applications will not be accepted after the closing date. The vacancy closes at midnight, Swiss time (GMT+1 / GMT+2 during Daylight Saving Time, DST). Please note that only selected applicants will be personally contacted for interviews.

Other job opportunities are published in the IUCN website: https://www.iucn.org/involved/jobs/

About IUCN

IUCN is a membership Union uniquely composed of both government and civil society organisations. It provides public, private and non-governmental organisations with the knowledge and tools that enable human progress, economic development and nature conservation to take place together.

Created in 1948, IUCN is now the world’s largest and most diverse environmental network, harnessing the knowledge, resources and reach of more than 1,400 Member organisations and around 16,000 experts. It is a leading provider of conservation data, assessments and analysis. Its broad membership enables IUCN to fill the role of incubator and trusted repository of best practices, tools and international standards.

IUCN provides a neutral space in which diverse stakeholders including governments, NGOs, scientists, businesses, local communities, indigenous peoples organisations and others can work together to forge and implement solutions to environmental challenges and achieve sustainable development.

Working with many partners and supporters, IUCN implements a large and diverse portfolio of conservation projects worldwide. Combining the latest science with the traditional knowledge of local communities, these projects work to reverse habitat loss, restore ecosystems and improve people’s well-being.