University of British Columbia

Staff – Non Union

Job Category

Job Profile
AAPS Salaried – Information Systems and Technology, Level C

Job Title

Data Services Unit Population Data BC Faculty of Medicine

Compensation Range
$5,906.25 – $8,508.42 CAD Monthly

The Compensation Range is the span between the minimum and maximum base salary for a position. The midpoint of the range is approximately halfway between the minimum and the maximum and represents an employee that possesses full job knowledge, qualifications and experience for the position. In the normal course, employees will be hired, transferred or promoted between the minimum and midpoint of the salary range for a job.

Posting End Date
October 22, 2023

Note: Applications will be accepted until 11:59 PM on the day prior to the Posting End Date above.

Job End Date

Dec 31, 2024

This offer is conditional upon successful completion of a Criminal Record Check. Due to the privacy sensitive nature of the data holdings at Population Data BC, the incumbent must meet the security screening requirements of our data providers.
Due to the grant-funded nature of this position, the initial term for this position is one year and renewable on an annual basis.

Job Summary
Population Data BC is a multi-university, data and education resource facilitating interdisciplinary research on the determinants of human health, well-being and development.

We support secure research access to individual-level, de-identified longitudinal data on British Columbia’s 4.8 million residents, linking data across various sectors such as health, education, early childhood development, workplace and the environment.  Population Data BC also offers a professional specialization certificate in Population Health Data Analysis, training researchers across Canada and around the world.

Key objectives of Population Data BC are to:

  • Make more data sets available for research

  • Facilitate cross-linkages among the data sets in a privacy sensitive manner

  • Provide strategic leadership to ensure streamlined researcher access to these data

  • Provide educational and other opportunities to ensure full and best use of those data

The Programmer/Analyst will work on research extracts, validation and management of data holdings, requirements gathering, and design and development of programs supporting Population Data BC’s data and related systems.  This position may also support PopData with the development and implementation of its web based applications. 

Organizational Status

Population Data BC is based at the School of Population and Public Health (SPPH), which is in the Faculty of Medicine at the University of British Columbia. We are a key member of the International Population Data Linkage Network, through which we have promoted international research collaborations and fostered working groups on privacy and access to data.

The Programmer/Analyst will report directly to the Lead, Data Services.  The candidate is expected to work closely on research extracts with members of the Data Access Unit and Data Services Unit.  Interaction with other Population Data BC staff, data providers and external researchers and clients is also required.
Work Performed


  • Manages spectrum of work with project management and priority-setting skills

  • Devises solutions for enhancing process and work flow

  • Requirements gathering and design: Works with users and stakeholders to gather requirements and critique systems to create requirements and design solutions

  • Reviews and recommends applications and processes to address Population Data BC systems

  • Ensures schedules and deadlines are met


  • Database management: Develops data management strategies, creates tables, cleans databases, standardizes fields, loads and queries/retrieves data, assesses integrity of the data and ensures quality control

  • Performs data modeling

  • Data linkage: Performs probabilistic and deterministic linkage of data

  • Data documentation: Works with Population Data BC staff and data providers to ensure accurate processes and technical data documentation

  • Data development: Prepares fields to facilitate analysis  

  • Data extraction: Performs, as needed, data extractions for approved research projects.  Produces samples, aggregations or completes preliminary analyses as required and approved

  • Implementation and development:  Implements and develops data processing programs and scripts according to requirements to support Population Data BC processes on systems and clusters (SAS, Perl, Python, C, SQL)

  • Develops and upgrades skills in evolving data and data-related technologies

  • Maintains and deepens understanding of the data holdings PopData links and maintains

  • May contribute to the development of web infrastructure that supports Population Data BC processes (Python, Django, PHP)

  • Performs other related duties

Consequence of Error/Judgement

This is a position in an organization responsible for providing services to the funders and the research community.  Work requires initiative, ingenuity, and attention to detail. The incumbent must be capable of managing and coordinating many tasks related to multiple complex projects.  The position requires considerable judgment in the management of project priorities, schedules, and resource requirements.  Inadequate judgment can result in project delays.

This position must communicate clearly and effectively in both written and interpersonal forms.  Clear and concise writing is required for the development of necessary documentation.  It is essential that the incumbent is able to work effectively under pressure to meet deadlines.

This role will work under strict confidentiality because of the nature of access to data holdings.  Any breach in data security would place the future of PopData at risk.

Accuracy is essential since errors may have implications that affect the organization, the research community, stakeholders and public bodies.

Supervision Received
The Programmer/Analyst reports directly to and receives input from the Lead, Data Services.  The Programmer/Analyst works independently on a day-to-day basis.  Work is reviewed in terms of achievement of specific project objectives.
Supervision Given
No formal reports. May supervise the work of student staff.
Minimum Qualifications
Undergraduate degree in a relevant discipline. Minimum of three years of related experience, or the equivalent combination of education and experience.


  • Minimum of three years’ experience or the equivalent combination of education and experience.

  • Experience within a statutorily-regulated or a privacy-sensitive environment considered an asset

  • Experience with complex data systems, large datasets, and databases

  • Experience with web based systems and requirements gathering

  • Experience with Shell scripting, SQL and Python/R preferred. Experience with SAS, S-Plus, SPSS, Stata, Perl would be beneficial. C is preferred.

  • Experience in Linux/Unix environment


  • Ability to manage and implement projects independently.

  • Ability to explain and communicate technical concepts to non-technical staff

  • Ability to solve issues with diplomacy, tact, and patience

  • Excellent interpersonal skills

  • Demonstrated ability to take initiative.

  • Demonstrated project management and priority setting skills.

  • Demonstrated organizational skills and well-developed problem solving and conceptual abilities.

  • Demonstrated time-management skills

  • Creative problem solver

  • Ability to work effectively both independently and within a team environment

  • Ability to exercise initiative, judgment and discretion.

  • Ability to be flexible, operate under pressure

  • Must be positive in attitude and a team player

Due to the privacy sensitive nature of the data holdings at Population Data BC, the incumbent must meet the security screening requirements of our data providers.

Preferred Qualifications

Undergraduate degree in a relevant discipline (Computer Science, Engineering, Statistics or other relevant field).  Postgraduate degree preferred.

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