Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation

Database Developer

The Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME) is an independent research center at the University of Washington focused on expanding the quantitative evidence base for health. IHME aims to provide policymakers, donors, and researchers with the highest-quality quantitative data to make decisions that achieve better health. IHME’s research spans multiple disciplines and policy-relevant areas including resource tracking, cost-effectiveness, forecasting, burden of diseases, geospatial analysis, health systems solutions, and impact evaluations. It has established international scientific credibility for developing innovative multidisciplinary methods and producing cutting-edge results. If you join IHME, you’ll be joining a team of mission-oriented people who are committed to creating a welcoming and diverse workforce that respects and appreciates differences, and embraces collaboration.

IHME has an outstanding opportunity for a Database Developer. The Database Developer will be responsible for the creation and maintenance of critical databases that must ingest and store hundreds of billions of rows of data and provide sub-second response times for visualizations that disseminate global health trends to policy makers across the world. This individual will also serve the critical function of building and implementing ETL scripts to publish large and growing datasets effectively and efficiently. A successful candidate will be passionate about storing and accessing big data, experienced in SQL database development and support, and committed to being part of an agile development team in pursuit of turning raw data into global impact.

Responsibilities Include:

Database Development, Maintenance, and Support

·         Build and modify tables, views, stored procedures, and functions to support storing and accessing research data and results in large relational, columnar, and distributed MySQL databases.

·         Optimize insert and retrieval response times using existing protocols around indexing, partitioning, and data model design.

·         Create processes to automate routine tasks like synchronizing data between servers and removing data marked for deletion.

·         Build and implement parallelized ETL scripts to move terabytes of data to external publishing servers on tight timelines.

·         Identify and implement improvements to existing database schema and code based on researcher needs and performance.

·         Provide timely and comprehensive user support via help desk ticket resolution.

Planning and Research Learning

·         Demonstrate a thorough understanding of the components of IHME’s data model.

·         Test, implement, and support database methods and new technologies as appropriate.

·         Provide input to timelines to deliver both iterative milestones and completed products.


·         Communicate clearly and effectively while contributing as a productive member of the database team and the Institute as a whole.


·         Bachelor’s degree in computer science, management information systems, or related field plus three years’ related experience or equivalent combination of education and experience.

Additional Requirements

·         Experience building and maintaining databases with extremely large datasets.

·         Experience working with multiple database systems, preferably open source, such as MySQL, PostGres, Columnstore, or Clustrix.

·         Strength in query optimization, stored procedures, partitioning, and schema design.

·         Experience with source control such as Git.

·         Strong sense of focus and attention to detail.

·         Ability to work well with others to solve problems, define priorities, and achieve common goals.

·         Demonstrated organizational skills, self-motivation, flexibility, strong communication skills, and the ability to thrive in a fast-paced, energetic, highly creative, entrepreneurial environment.

Equivalent education/experience will substitute for all minimum qualifications except when there are legal requirements, such as a license/certification/registration.


·         Experience with Linux, bash, and/or Python.

·         Experience working with containerized database implementations.

Conditions of Employment:

·         Evening/weekend work may be required.

·         IHME is a grant-funded organization, and as such, this position is contingent on project funding.