Senior Technical Specialist, Monitoring & Technology

Posted: 19 July 2023| Full-Time | UK


ZSL’s Monitoring & Technology Programme (MTP) is an interdisciplinary team of scientists, technologists, and field experts who contribute to ZSL’s mission by helping people monitor more effectively for conservation. We draw on our strengths in research, innovation, and capacity development to design and implement enhanced monitoring approaches, and to support our partners to use those approaches to improve conservation on the ground. Our partners are diverse, spanning NGOs, governments, communities, and businesses. We work across scales and contexts, from monitoring population and habitat health to detecting threats to biodiversity, and from evaluating conservation effectiveness to measuring corporate biodiversity impacts.

The purpose of this role is to support ZSL’s internal and external partners in the UK and overseas to understand biodiversity in areas they manage and to improve their conservation impact, using advanced monitoring techniques and technologies. The Senior Technical Specialist will lead provision of technical support to our partners on biodiversity monitoring, and oversee development and implementation of relevant MTP projects. The role will also work with ZSL’s experts and scientists to drive methodological and technological advances, while supporting integration and coordination of monitoring initiatives among the Society’s UK staff and field teams, and encouraging sharing and use of best practice.

The position

Position: Senior Technical Specialist, Monitoring & Technology (Conservation & Policy, 3 year full-time/fixed-term contract)

Salary: £40,287 – £43,542 (Inclusive of London weighting) per annum

Location: Regents Park

Key Responsibilities

  • Lead on the design and implementation of effective, efficient biodiversity monitoring programmes and surveys in the UK and overseas, generating evidence to inform partners’ management and policy decision-making, and to evaluate and improve their conservation impact.
  • Lead provision of technical support, advice, training, and capacity development to our partners on biodiversity monitoring for conservation, including on common data collection methods and technologies, such as camera trapping, passive acoustic monitoring, direct count techniques, ranger-based monitoring via SMART, unoccupied aerial vehicles-based imagery, satellite remote sensing, and eDNA methods.
  • Responsibility for overseeing and delivering full monitoring life cycle, including developing monitoring frameworks using theory of change-based techniques, selecting appropriate indicators, scoping methods and technologies, designing surveys and monitoring programmes, implementing data collection, analysing and managing data, reporting and presenting results, enabling adaptive management, developing partner capacity, and engaging stakeholders.
  • Lead field work in field sites in the UK and overseas, in collaboration with local partners.
  • Lead management and analysis of monitoring data, drawing on advanced machine learning and statistical techniques, and supporting development of automated processing pipelines in collaboration with technology partners.

qualifications and person specifications

  • Possess an advanced degree in a relevant discipline.
  • Have extensive experience monitoring diverse taxa using a range of methods, including but not limited to camera trapping and passive acoustic monitoring.
  • Have extensive experience researching species occurrence, abundance, demography, and/or behaviour.
  • Have advanced skills in statistical analysis and data management.
  • Have experience conducting biodiversity surveys in demanding field environments.
  • Have experience with monitoring and evaluation for conservation projects, including developing theories of change.
  • Have experience publishing technical reports and/or scientific papers.

We strongly encourage applications from all backgrounds and celebrate the value of having a team of employees with diverse skills, experiences, and heritage. We are committed to ensuring our teams can bring their authentic selves to work without fear of discrimination. ZSL has active equality networks for our staff with lived experience and those who provide active allyship in Race and Culture, Team Pride, Disability Network, and Menopause Network, complemented by our strategic EDI Steering Group.

about zsl

We’re ZSL, an international conservation charity. Through our unrivalled animal experts in our two zoos (London Zoo and Whipsnade Zoo), the work of our pioneering scientists, our dedicated conservationists, our purpose is to inspire, inform and empower people to stop wild animals going extinct. Our vision is a world where wildlife thrives and we’re working every day to achieve this. From investigating the health threats facing animals, to helping people and wildlife live alongside each other, we are committed to bringing wildlife back from the brink of extinction.

What do we offer?

At ZSL, we are proud of our approach to employee benefits. Our benefits include:

  • Our vision and purpose – you’ll work alongside colleagues who are passionate about science-led conservation, knowing that you will help us to inspire, inform and empower people to stop wildlife going extinct
  • Pension scheme – we offer a generous pension scheme with up to 12% contributory pension.
  • Flexible working – talk to us about your flexible working requirements and we will do everything we can to make sure you work in a way that suits you
  • Holidays – 25 days annual leave allowance, plus UK bank holidays
  • Wellbeing – access to a blended programme of wellbeing initiatives, including confidential access to our 24/7 Employee Assistance Programme
  • Complimentary tickets – annual allocation of Whipsnade Zoo and London Zoo tickets, with a 30% discount in online and retail shops
  • Cycle2Work – our cycle to work scheme enables you to lease a bicycle
  • Season ticket loan – we offer an interest free loan to buy a season ticket for travel between home and work
  • Family friendly policies – we offer enhanced maternity and paternity packages

To Apply

Applicants will need to upload their CV and covering letter (detailing relevant experience and skills, stating why they want the position and including details of availability) and can do this by clicking the “Apply for this job online” button. If you require any reasonable adjustments, please contact

Closing date for applications: Midnight (23:59) on Sunday 30 July 2023

Provisional interview date: Wednesday 9 August 2023

The World Association of Zoos and Aquariums (WAZA) is the global alliance of regional associations, national federations, zoos and aquariums, dedicated to the care and conservation of animals and their habitats around the world.

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