Environmental Data Science

A global leader in environmental data science, NCEAS equips researchers with the skills and tools they need to turn data into knowledge and solutions.

Environmental data science entails the theories, techniques, and tools that allow scientists to combine and integrate large amounts of data about the environment and draw meaningful insights from them. It goes hand-in-hand with synthesis science, which relies on access to existing data and the capacity to analyze them.

We develop tools, trainings, and best practices in environmental data science to enhance scientists’ ability to access, share, integrate, and analyze environmental data. Our work makes the discovery process more efficient, transparent, and reproducible, leading to results that are highly useful for natural resource decision-making.

Data Science Research Projects

We develop state-of-the-art tools, practices, and computing infrastructure to enhance scientists' capacity to harness knowledge from data, often working in partnership with other scientific institutions.

View our current and past projects.

Data Science Tools

Store, share, access, and analyze data with these data science tools developed and maintained by our data scientists. Tools for computing infrastructure developers are also available.

Access our tools.

Data Science Learning Hub

By providing trainings and resources in environmental data science, we help increase researchers' efficiency and productivity, enabling their science to inform solutions more quickly and effectively. Learn how you can be part of our knowledge-sharing community.

Go to our Learning Hub.

Scientific Computing Support

We provide computing and analysis support to our working groups and residents. Our guidance includes training and advice in data modeling, data integration, team-based analyses of diverse datasets, open and reprodicible workflows, research product preservation, best practices in collaborative data management, and scientific coding using our analytical servers and open-source tools.

Learn more about the support we provide.

Our Data Policy

NCEAS requires the scientists we support to document and publish their datasets and code. Read our full data policy.

Our own data science tools are open source, and we encourage a culture of data sharing and open access in environmental science. Through the KNB Data Repository, we make thousands of environmental datasets – generated at NCEAS and elsewhere – publicly available for free.

Our Team

  • Matt Jones

    Director of Informatics, Research & Development

    I'm driven to create open science solutions to data and software challenges that have historically impeded large scale scientific synthesis. At NCEAS, I have focused on building a global data sharing infrastructure that led to the KNB Repository and the DataONE federation. Along the way I've built metadata standards, data management tools, and data analysis software. I have the pleasure of coordinating a great team focused on informatics research and development at NCEAS.

  • Mark Schildhauer

    Director of Computing

    I have been the Director of Computing at NCEAS since its inception in 1995. I oversee the creation and maintenance of NCEAS’ cyberinfrastructure and technology staff with a focus on the scientific computing needs of researchers at NCEAS. My technology research interests are primarily in the areas of informatics, the semantic web, scientific workflows, computer-supported collaborative research, and Open Science, all in the context of facilitating integrative environmental and conservation science.

  • Julien Brun

    Scientific Programmer

    I provide support in data processing, analysis and modeling to working groups of the Science for Nature And People Partnership (SNAPP). I am interested in crunching data to find novel understanding of our environment, with a particular interest in geospatial and temporal analysis. My background is in Eco-hydrology and Earth observation techniques (remote sensing and GIS). .

  • Jeanette Clark

    Projects Data Coordinator

    As a Projects Data Coordinator, I provide support in data management and data processing to the working groups of the State of Alaska Salmon and People (SASAP). I am interested in using open data techniques to facilitate synthesis science among researchers who are asking questions that will inform environmental policy making. I was first introduced to data processing and data analysis through my academic background in physical oceanography, and am enjoying applying this foundation to more interdisciplinary ecology research.

  • Thomas Hetmank


    As part of the scientific computing support staff I provide technical support in the broadest sense for our residents and working groups - desktops, networking, email, printing, support for our audio/video equipment, remote collaboration and electrical pencil sharpeners - to name some key areas. Being the first line of defense, an important part of my job is to make sure everybody from our short-term visitors to our long-term residents has the tools they need to be productive in their area. If I do not have the answer to a specific request, chances are I know who in our team does or would be equipped to address it.

  • Chris Jones

    Software Engineer

    I have worked on informatics projects for the last fifteen years, focusing on generic solutions to common data management needs in the earth and ecological sciences. Over the years I have built systems to document and archive data for regional and international consortia, stream data in real time from arrays of oceanographic sensors, and have been involved in standards development efforts. I am currently focusing on the software that underlies the DataONE federation. I try to handle computer systems in stride, despite their frequent tantrums, and do so from Colorado.

  • Bryce Mecum

    Science Software Engineer

    I am interested in conducting, teaching, and developing software for open science. As a scientific software engineer at NCEAS, I am working to make open scientific data discoverable. My background is in computer science and biology and this combination offers me an applied perspective on the scientific software I develop. My primary biological interests are fisheries ecology and stock assessment, particularly statistical modeling and data analysis. My primary computing interests tend to support my biological interests and that means I do a lot of automation, testing, data mining, and data visualization. Making software for other people to use makes me happy.

  • Nick Outin

    System Administrator


  • Peter Slaughter

    Software Engineer

    I design and build software tools that aid scientists in managing and sharing data, data provenance and research. As the volume of data, derived data products and analysis results grows, the challenge of data sharing, collaboration and reproducibility grows as well. I'm committed to helping build the cyber-infrasture to meet these challenges, so investigators can spend more time answering important scientific questions and less time "sed", "grep" and "awking".

  • Jing Tao

    Software Engineer

    As a software engineer at NCEAS, I have worked on different environmental software projects, including Knowledge Network for Biocomplexity (KNB), Science Environment for Ecological Knowledge (SEEK), Kepler and Data Observation Network for Earth (DataONE). My focus is to develop robust, efficient and scalable software products from desktop applications to server repositories.

  • Lauren Walker

    Software Engineer and Designer

    As a software designer and developer with an education in ecology and conservation, my mission is to create useful web applications that support and advance the research of environmental scientists.

  • Dominic Mullen

    Data Technician

    I write functions to improve metadata, and when that fails, I like to make something up and see if anyone notices.

  • Rushiraj Nenuji

    Software Engineer

    I work with the eco-informatics team developing software that helps with scientific research.

  • Thomas Thelen

    Software Engineer

    I work on open source projects that support the progression, access, and ease of science.

  • Steven Chong

    Data Technician

    I apply controlled vocabularies to ecological data to improve research discovery and the consistency of search results.