VLIZ recruits: Data Manager GOOS Biology | Flanders Marine Institute

Flanders Marine Institute

Platform for marine research

VLIZ recruits: Data Manager GOOS Biology

Join us in working towards a healthy ocean and resilient islands.

Our offer

  • A challenging job in a dynamic environment at the InnovOcean site in Ostend.
  • A temporary contract initially for 1 year for immediate employment for secondment to the secretariat of the Ocean Biodiversity Information System (OBIS) at the UNESCO/IOC Project Office for IODE.
  • Contract subject to extension if funds are available.
  • A salary scale according to qualifications/experience, following the salary scales of the Flemish Government.
  • Fringe benefits: holiday pay, end-of-year bonus, meal vouchers, bike allowance, free public transport for home-work-commuting and an attractive leave scheme.

Your tasks

You will work under the supervision of the OBIS project manager and in close consultation with the OBIS data manager and the members of the Biology and Ecoystems expert panel of the Global Ocean Observing System (GOOS BioEco).

You will be (i) managing the information about observing systems, networks, and data assets provided via a portal for the Global Ocean Observing System, Biology and Ecosystems Panel (GOOS BioEco) for official launch by the end of 2021 and (ii) provide coordination with the observing systems, networks, and data-producing projects contributing to biological and ecosystem Essential Ocean Variable (EOV) with the aim to bring more of the data from these facilities fully online through OBIS, and become interoperable and reusable as part of an integrated global ocean observing system.

More specifically you will:

  • Build relationships with biological and ecosystem observing systems, networks and projects, IODE data centres including OBIS Nodes.
  • Quality control, update descriptive information about data contributions based on feedback and further expand the information in the GOOS BioEco portal.
  • Contribute to best-practice guideline(s) for standardization, formatting, quality controlling and publishing EOV datasets.
  • Build connections and develop alignment, where relevant, with other parts of GOOS with similar function in the physical and biogeochemistry domains, specifically the Observation Coordination Group (GOOS OCG) and OceanOPS, which coordinate across the global ocean observing networks and provide a core function around data, metadata and visualization for the networks and the GOOS. An ability to share relevant information automatically for an integrated view will be important. In addition, there is experience in these established systems that could be supportive.
  • Provide help desk support and training to data custodians; assist with formatting, quality controlling, and publishing EOV datasets; and share data processing workflows for the benefit of all EOV data contribution activities.
For each function, VLIZ considers enthusiastic involvement, open servitude, excellent professionalism and integrity as important characteristics.

Your profile

  • MSc/PhD in Exact or Applied Sciences, including biology and bioinformatics with a keen interest in scientific data and information management;
  • Good experience with international networking, communication, and outreach
  • Good experience with biological data standards (e.g., Darwin Core, EML)
  • Good experience with R and/or Python, and GIS software (e.g., QGIS)
  • Strong interpersonal skills, a motivated team player
  • Willing to work in an international context
  • Good oral and written English communication skills
  • Knowledge of biodiversity and marine ecology is a plus.

About us

OBIS (www.obis.org) is a global project that through a global collaborative platform provides access to scientific data and information on the diversity, abundance and distribution of marine species. OBIS is one of the projects of IODE (International Oceanographic Data and Information Exchange) which is a programme of the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC) of UNESCO. The purpose is to enhance marine research, exploitation and development, by facilitating the exchange of oceanographic data and information between participating member states and by developing applications that meet the needs of users of marine data and information products.

GOOS Biology and Ecosystems (BioEco) Panel (https://goosocean.org/biology) was established in 2015 with the vision to coordinate and facilitate biological ocean observations centered around a set of EOVs, connect various biological observing networks and promote the development of biological observing communities. A key focus of the BioEco panel is to foster wider systematic data sharing, curation, and aggregation under guidance of OBIS, and build global capacity for data collection and data management by sharing best practices, manuals and guides.    

Flanders Marine Institute (VLIZ) was established in 1999 to support the Flemish and international marine research. VLIZ also houses the secretariat and project office of IODE and other international organizations in its buildings in Ostend. VLIZ is involved in several European projects and research infrastructures (Assemble +, GEANS, LifeWatch, EMBRC), that currently consolidate the use of genetic data for marine environmental monitoring, allowing for excellent networking opportunities.

Additional information

For more information concerning this vacancy, please contact

For administrative questions, please contact jobs@vliz.be.

Does this vacancy appeal to you?

Send in your motivation letter and CV no later than 10 August 2021 by email to jobs@vliz.be with subject “Data Manager GOOS Biology”

VLIZ promotes equality and diversity in the workplace. You will be recruited based on competencies. Qualities of people are decisive, regardless of gender, religion, ethnic origin, age, sexual orientation or any disability.


Based on the received motivation letters and CV’s; a select group of candidates will be invited for a job interview last week of August. You will be informed by email. The job interviews will take place in the offices of VLIZ.