GIS Officer, Provincial Mapping Unit

Job Description
GIS Officer, Provincial Mapping Unit



Position Classification: Science Research (Research Family level A)
Position Title: GIS Officer
Salary: grant funded
Faculty: Faculty of Graduate Studies
Department: Human Early Learning Partnership (HELP)


The incumbent will work with HELP’s Provincial Mapping Unit team and will contribute to a) GIS and cartographic support of the provincial mapping unit and CHILD project, and b) community asset data mapping and analysis, managing databases, performing cross-sectional analyses, integrating administrative data, Early Development Instrument (EDI) data and provincial-level educational data, and qualitative analysis of community-level information.


This position reports directly to the Research Manager of the Provincial Mapping Unit and works closely with members of the research team.  It is expected that the incumbent will have a direct, close working relationship with the GIS coordinator.


Major responsibilities include:

  • Carrying out GIS analyses, cartographic production and data management in support of various projects undertaken at HELP and within CHILD.
  • Performing cross-sectional statistical analysis at the neighbourhood and school levels using data from multiple sources including administrative datasets, the EDI and provincial educational outcome data.
  • Providing mapping services to HELP affiliates and community organizations using ArcView GIS, ArcGIS, and Freehand or Illustrator, by acting as consultant on spatial representation of data and on how to store and use data.
  • Performing complex data standardization, geocoding and ‘cleaning’ in support of HELP’s community mapping program. Troubleshooting and detecting problems due to the conversion from ArcView to new IMS software.
  • Participating in providing research support and methodological advice re: collection and analysis of data.
  • Serving as a HELP resource person for community-based questions or issues that may arise regarding GIS, spatial analysis and mapping.
  • Liaising with multiple stakeholders in order to provide information and to ensure data access.
  • Contributing to writing of research reports for publication.
  • Remaining up-to-date with industry trends and current practices.
  • Other related duties may be assigned.


Accuracy is essential since errors may have implications for future policy and funding. The candidate is required to interact with faculty, researchers, systems analysts and support staff at HELP, and will have contact with government, regional health authority staff and other community and professional groups. 


Receives minimal instructions. Work is reviewed by GIS supervisor and Provincial Mapping Unit manager for accuracy and adherence to procedures.  Works within established project parameters under the direction of Research Manager of the Provincial Mapping Unit.




Works at a shared workstation in a shared office.  Office space has overhead fluorescent lighting, and task lighting. Normal office equipment, equipped with a PC, and printer access.


Reports directly to Research Manager of HELP’s Provincial Mapping Unit.



An undergraduate degree in geography, with specific training in cartography/information design and GIS.  A degree in a related field may be considered.


Two years experience (or equivalent coursework) with ESRI ArcView GIS 3.x, or ArcGIS 9.x preferred (either would be acceptable, but preference may be given to an applicant with a strong command of both). Experience with database management, basic statistics and presentation software is required. An understanding of PPGIS (Public Participation GIS) and working collaboratively with community-based organizations is highly desirable.


  • Qualitative and quantitative research skills and multivariate experience.
  • Ability to use the following software applications:
    • Intermediate ESRI ArcView GIS 3.3 or ArcGIS 9.x
    • Intermediate Excel
    • Proficiency and comfort with a vector graphics package (Freehand and Illustrator preferred)
    • Intermediate MSWord
    • Proficiency and comfort with statistical software (e.g. SPSS), relational database software (e.g. Access), and presentation software (e.g. PowerPoint) an asset.
    • Experience with Java and JavaScript an asset, especially related to ArcIMS
    • Experience with html an asset

  • Effective interpersonal skills, creative thinker and problem-solving skills.
  • Ability to adapt to changing priorities, multi-tasking and meeting deadlines.
  • Ability to maintain accuracy and careful attention to detail
  • Self-motivation and ability to work well in a team environment. 
  • Ability to work successfully with a wide range of groups and individuals, including community groups, researchers, the public sector and multiple levels of government
  • Experience with the collection and analysis of administrative datasets and their integration with individual and multivariate data is desirable.   
  • Prior knowledge of the relationship between neighbourhood characteristics and child development is an asset.
  • Knowledge of BC’s geography is a strong asset.