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Data Engineer

Washington, DC

About Us

Protagonist is a women-owned, women-led small business and pioneer in narrative research, analysis, and strategy. We help our clients harness the power of narratives by illuminating the stories that matter to their mission, analyzing the influences and influencers that are driving those narratives, and developing strategies for navigating and shaping those narrative landscapes. Over the past decade, we have developed a line of state-of-the-art narrative products that focus on the deep, enduring stories that define a population’s identity, shape their perspectives, and describe their beliefs.  Our Narrative Analytics® technology platform is relied on by dozens of the world’s leading corporations, government agencies, and nonprofits to identify, quantify, and track narratives in online conversations. We have team members in Washington, DC, San Francisco, Chicago, and many points in between.

About You

You’re a self-motivated Engineer, able to support Protagonist’s applications that handle large amounts of data. You’re able to work in a fast paced environment, with a hir h-performing team. You are comfortable with ambiguity and hard problems and you thrive in fast-paced start-up environments, solving cutting-edge data challenges. Self-starting problem solver when responding to use data challenges.

Primary Responsibilities

Support the development of technology that powers our Narrative Analytics® offering. This includes web application development, managing ETL processing pipelines, performing AWS maintenance, and writing the random Python script.  The Data Engineer will be expected to collaborate with members of the Engineering Team and our customer-facing Client Solutions Team to create solutions that are sustainable and scalable to meet their needs. Specific responsibilities include: 

  • Working within our internal web application to support our user base

  • Writing Python scripts

  • Application design and development

  • Design and deploy new infrastructure to AWS 

  • Work in sprints to create, design, and develop modules in coordination with the rest of the Engineering Team

  • Take initiative in solving complex technical problems and recommend original solutions and design approaches to meet requirements, making decisions between competing solutions

  • Own core deliverables, including technical design, logical and physical design of the solution, coding, testing, and debugging

  • Maintain system reliability and uptime of production applications by measuring and monitoring availability, latency, and overall system health.

  • Rotation as on-call production support 


  • Must be able to work on US Government contracts restricted to US citizens

  • Must be eligible to obtain a US Government security clearance

  • BS in Computer Science, Computer Engineering, or a related field

  • 1 - 3 years experience with Amazon Web Services (AWS); AWS Certification a plus

  • 1 - 3 years experience in software development, using Python

  • Experience working on a production product with a collaborative team

  • Experience with Code Version Control (GIT)

  • Experience with Postgres (or similar) SQL database programming

  • Experience working with Agile scrum or Kanban methodology to deliver high-quality, high-value software

  • Experience and understanding of Docker or containerization of services 

  • Understanding of web development best practices

Additional Information

Protagonist is a values-driven company that is committed to doing meaningful work for organizations we respect.  We are deeply committed to centering racial and gender justice in the work we produce, in our engagement with clients, and in our internal operations.  We believe in the promise of democratic governance and the responsibility of civic participation, and are building a culture that supports these commitments.

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