• Interviews started
  • Closing date: 27 April 2020


The mission of The Ocean Cleanup is to rid the world's oceans of plastic. Therefore, we also need to ‘close the tap’. Our research indicates that 1000 rivers are responsible for 80% of riverine plastic influx into the ocean, and we target these rivers for Interceptor deployments to reduce the influx as quickly as possible. The River Data Scientist will process, organize, and visualize all incoming data from these rivers and Interceptors.

“The Data & Monitoring Team supports the development and deployment of Interceptors by researching the spatial and temporal behavior of plastic in rivers and providing all relevant data on rivers where deployments are planned. We collect data, create models, and collaborate with universities across the globe to obtain an accurate knowledge of plastic-emitting rivers. If you are a structured person who combines data science skills with an affinity for hydrology, then this is the opportunity you are looking for.” – Lourens Meijer, Team Lead Data & Monitoring


Our Global River Model identified the 1000 rivers responsible for 80% of plastic emissions into oceans. We actively research these rivers to classify them and determine suitability for Interceptor deployments. Data from our research campaign, the Interceptors, and online databases needs to be processed, organized, and visualized in order to support our Engineering, Operational, and Business Development teams as well as to deepen our understanding of plastic pollution in these rivers. The River Data Scientist will structure incoming data and make sure data is presentable and accessible for the teams. The River Data Scientist will join and support research missions abroad as well to collect data firsthand.

This role is based in our offices in Rotterdam, the Netherlands, occasional site visits abroad are part of the job.


  • MSc degree, preferably in GeoSciences, Civil Engineering or Environmental Engineering
  • Two to five years of working experience
  • Experienced with finding, processing, analyzing, and visualizing data
  • Capable of handling, structuring, and organizing large data streams from various sources (e.g. SQL)
  • Skilled with GIS (preferable ArcGIS)
  • Proven Python programming skills
  • Demonstrated knowledge of standard statistical techniques (such as significance testing, regression modeling, etc.)
  • Experienced with organizing and executing fieldwork is a plus
  • Experienced making great (scientific/technical) visualizations is a plus
  • Has a valid EU working permit


  • Structured worker with a curious and critical mindset
  • Comfortable with a high level of autonomy
  • Enjoys structuring work for yourself and others
  • Strong command of English, verbal and written
  • Willingness to travel abroad occasionally
  • Enjoys learning and developing new skills and tools
  • Intrinsic motivation to work on our ambitious and meaningful goal

Please mention the potential start date in your application.

Starting from:
Work permit needed:
European Union

Interviews have started, but please feel free to apply, as we might consider new applications.