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Cultural Analyst

Date: May 9, 2022

Location: Oak Ridge, TN, US, 37830

Company: Oak Ridge National Laboratory

Requisition Id 8214 


The Human Geography Group within the Human Dynamics Section is currently seeking qualified applicants for the position of  Cultural Analyst.  In this role you will work with a team of talented researchers, engineers, and technologists to support existing population and building occupancy workflows for data development, provide updates to the workflows, and help to drive the next generation of population modeling research in support of critical national security missions through a team-based approach and commitment to excellence.

A successful candidate will work on challenging, multidisciplinary projects that advance our understanding of human processes as they interact with the virtual, natural, and built environment. Solving problems motivated by national security challenges, you will use geospatial analysis and cultural knowledge to model the relationship between built environment characteristics and human population densities across space and time.  You will work within the Human Geography Group and collaborate across the Human Dynamics Section and the Geospatial Science and Human Dynamics Division at ORNL, where you’ll have the opportunity to support the development of data, models, and data driven and statistical methods using open source demographic, sociocultural and economic data in order to provide insights into human activities and interactions with the environment, from local to global scales. As a member of the Human Geography Group, you’ll focus on support of daily activities of existing workflows and the update and development of new methods and models in discovery of the functional and complex connections between humans and their physical, cultural, and socioeconomic landscapes.


Major Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Contribute to the systematic development and update of occupancy models for various facility types worldwide, from the local to regional scale
  • Participate in open source data mining of local to national and regional level demographic data and surveys, geospatial resources, and social and economic data that inform occupancy or population models.
  • Analyze geospatial data to determine building location, building footprint, and height.
  • Support review, update, and development of new quantitative and qualitative population or occupancy methods to accommodate newly discovered open source data.
  • Contribute to the development of tools and processes that automate open source data collection and data development increasing access and visibility of open source data and population models.
  • Opportunity to contribute to team publications in journals, participate in conferences, and engage with other scientists, technicians, and analysts in the private sector, academia, and US Government communities.


Basic Requirements:

  • Bachelor’s and 2 years relevant experience or Master’s degree and 1 year of relevant experience in Geography, Urban Planning, Social Science, Demography, Anthropology, Linguistics or a related discipline.
  • Experience in geospatial analysis including use of open source and/or commercial geospatial tools such as ArcGIS, QGIS, PostGIS
  • Experience in analyzing and interacting with structured or unstructured open source datasets. 
  • Basic understanding of remote sensing and image interpretation.
  • Experience in open source data mining and collection techniques.
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills.
  • Capable of working successfully in a team environment.


Preferred Qualifications:

  • Experience with research or development about different cultures and cultural practices around the world.
  • Knowledge of qualitative and quantitative research methods with focus on spatial and temporal processes in the built environment.
  • Experience with Python, R, and/or other similar languages for statistical analysis.
  • Experience in analyzing and interacting with social media, digital trace data, or time series data.
  • Experience with remote sensing and image interpretation including multispectral and hyperspectral data, spectral analysis, and lidar.
  • Fluency in other languages or some level of interpretation of languages in support of open source data collection.


This position will remain open for a minimum of 5 days after which it will close when a qualified candidate is identified and/or hired.

We accept Word (.doc, .docx), Adobe (unsecured .pdf), Rich Text Format (.rtf), and HTML (.htm, .html) up to 5MB in size. Resumes from third party vendors will not be accepted; these resumes will be deleted and the candidates submitted will not be considered for employment.

If you have trouble applying for a position, please email

ORNL is an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants, including individuals with disabilities and protected veterans, are encouraged to apply.  UT-Battelle is an E-Verify employer.

Nearest Major Market: Knoxville