Opening: Lead developer

Get paid to conquer campaign cash. Join the California Civic Data Coalition!

The California Civic Data Coalition is seeking a developer to lead its open-source project to master the jumbled, dirty and difficult government database that tracks money in California politics.

The developer will partner with the Coalition’s leadership team to:

  • Improve and expand our Python pipeline for refining raw government data
  • Develop a public website with bulk downloads and documentation to encourage journalists, academics, developers and analysts of all stripes to access and interpret the data
  • Participate in a series of retreats where our team will travel across the state to code and collaborate with others
  • Push the envelope in the field, experimenting with next-generation techniques like corruption-detecting algorithms, dat versioning and OpenCivicData standardization

This position is funded by a philanthropic grant made to the Coalition as winners of the 2015 Knight News Challenge on elections. It is planned to run for at least 1.5 years, past Election Day 2016.

Applicants should have computer-programming experience. Expertise in campaign-finance analysis is an advantage but not a requirement. A demanding eye for detail is needed. Passion for open-source software is a must.

The applicant will have the opportunity to relocate and join one of the Coalition’s partner newsrooms and work directly with professional journalists and leading data scientists. Remote working arrangements will be considered.

The Coalition will pay a competitive salary and offer full benefits via our fiscal agent, Investigative Reporters and Editors at the University of Missouri-Columbia.

The University of Missouri is an equal access, equal opportunity, affirmative action employer that is fully committed to achieving a diverse faculty and staff. Equal Opportunity is and shall be provided for all employees and applicants for employment on the basis of their demonstrated ability and competence without unlawful discrimination on the basis of their race, color, national origin, ancestry, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, age, genetic information, disability, or protected veteran status.

To apply, contact cacivicdata@gmail.com. Please send a resume, references and links to past relevant work.

About our team

The California Civic Data Coalition is a loosely coupled team from the Los Angeles Times Data Desk, the San Francisco Chronicle, The Center for Investigative Reporting and Stanford’s Computational Journalism Lab.

It was formed in 2014 to lead the development of open-source software that makes California’s public data easier to access and analyze. The effort has drawn hundreds of contributions from other developers and journalists at competing news outlets.

In 2015 the coalition was named a winner of the Knight News Challenge and awarded $250,000 in philanthropic funding from the Knight Foundation, the Democracy Fund, the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation and the Rita Allen Foundation.