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Lead Data Scientist (Research Partnership)

Please Note: The application deadline for this job has now passed.

Job Introduction

This is a rare opportunity to join BBC R&D in a senior role, based in our West London Lab. You will lead and build a long-term partnership focusing on Data Science research and innovation with multiple academic partners, working closely with senior stakeholders across the BBC.

The BBC is devoting more efforts to the role that data science can play in the delivery of our content, the types of content we make and the future role of the BBC.  In R&D we have established a programme of research that enables academics to apply their expertise when addressing some of the BBC’s grand challenges, by using BBC’s extensive rich datasets.


The aims of this Data Science Research Partnership are


  • to enable us to utilise the richest and most useful data about our content, our output and our audiences
  • to enable us to provide the most relevant experience and content to our users
  • to have shaped an internet-first public service future that has measurable impact.


This is an exciting opportunity to lead and shape BBC R&Ds data science programme of work.

Role Responsibility

In addition to leading the technical development of a programme of work with universities and departments in R&D and the wider BBC, you will establish structures, standards and methods of sharing our data with external partners for research purposes and co-ordinate a programme of work within R&D.  You will be working particularly closely with colleagues in diverse technical areas of R&D as well as with the partnerships team in R&D. You will work closely with colleagues in our Design and Engineering and Marketing and Audiences divisions, and with the wider BBC, contributing to initiatives to make the BBC a data-enabled organisation

Are you the right candidate?

  • Do you have a deep understanding of data science, and real world experience of both industrial and academic uses of data at scale?
  • Do you want to establish the BBC as the best place in the world to carry out ground breaking research into media, TV and radio – around audiences, consumption patterns and content analysis?
  • Can you create partnerships and work with networks of experts to help guide cohorts of students and academics to tackling large problems across all aspects of media and data?


You will have a track record and reputation for data science and R&D work in an industrial and/or academic role, with significant experience of setting up and leading collaborative projects between industry and academia working on industrial problems.  You will have experience applying data science techniques to large, complex data sets.  You will have led projects, be  comfortable talking to senior stakeholders and be able to explain complex subject areas.


About BBC R&D

BBC R&D has a worldwide reputation for contributing to, and leading, the engineering, research and development of many of the key broadcast and media technologies and is leading the way in object-based broadcasting. The research work is mainly on new technologies which are expected to be rolled out over a 1 to 5 years timescale and require both in depth theoretical knowledge and also a practical approach to potential deployment.

BBC R&D is based in two main labs, one in London and one in MediaCityUK, Salford. Our research and development teams (comprising around 150 engineers, scientists and other disciplines) are engaged in a wide range of leading edge projects, such as leading the way in developing the use of internet protocols (IP) in production and researching the transformation that the end-to-end use of IP and object-based audio throughout the media lifecycle may have on the industry. The department works on prototyping new internet technologies and services and does scientific analysis of the final users' experience of potential new services.

Further information on current projects and collaborations being undertaken by Research & Development are available at:

Package Description

Band: E
Contract type: Continuing
Location: London (W12)

We’re happy to discuss flexible working. Please indicate your choice under the flexible working question in the application. There is no obligation to raise this at the application stage but if you wish to do so, you are welcome to. Flexible working will be part of the discussion at offer stage.

  • Excellent career progression – the BBC offers great opportunities for employees to seek new challenges and work in different areas of the organisation.
  • Unrivalled training and development opportunities – our in-house Academy hosts a wide range of internal and external courses and certification.
  • Benefits- We offer a competitive salary package, a flexible 35-hour working week for work-life balance and 26 days (1 of which is a corporation day) with the option to buy an extra 5 days, a defined pension scheme and discounted dental, health care, gym and much more.

About the BBC

We don’t focus simply on what we do – we also care how we do it. Our values and the way we behave are important to us. Please make sure you’ve read about our values and behaviours in the document attached below.

Diversity matters at the BBC. We have a working environment where we value and respect every individual's unique contribution, enabling all of our employees to thrive and achieve their full potential.

We want to attract the broadest range of talented people to be part of the BBC – whether that’s to contribute to our programming or our wide range of non-production roles. The more diverse our workforce, the better able we are to respond to and reflect our audiences in all their diversity. 

We are committed to equality of opportunity and welcome applications from individuals, regardless of age, gender, ethnicity, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity, socio-economic background, religion and/or belief. We will consider flexible working requests for all roles, unless operational requirements prevent otherwise.

To find out more about Diversity and Inclusion at the BBC, please click here


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