World Health Organization (WHO)

Scientist (Senior Toxicologist - IARC Monographs)

World Health Organization (WHO)

Job Description

  The IARC Monographs (IMO) Programme is situated within the Evidence Synthesis and Classification Branch of IARC. The Programme produces the IARC Monographs on the Identification of Carcinogenic Hazards to Humans, which are systematic reviews and evaluations of the published scientific evidence on carcinogenic hazards to which humans are exposed. The Programme carries out its mission by convening meetings of international, interdisciplinary working groups of expert scientists to conduct the reviews and develop the evaluations. The published Monographs are used by international and national health agencies as the scientific basis for their actions to prevent or reduce human exposure to carcinogens. IMO scientists may also participate in the evaluation of cancer-preventive agents and may also produce position papers and other publications relevant to the IARC Monographs.

More information about the IARC Monographs Group (IMO) at IARC can be found at the following links: Under the supervision of the IMO Head of Programme (and ESC Deputy Branch Head), the incumbent carries out the planning, preparation and implementation of one of every four meetings of international scientific working groups whose critical reviews and evaluations of the published scientific literature are published as volumes of the IARC Monographs. In addition, she/he participates in all Monographs Working Group meetings and is responsible for production and scientific accuracy of the section of each Monograph volume corresponding to her/his field of expertise.

The incumbent also actively participates in IARC scientific symposia relevant to carcinogenic hazard identification and in ad-hoc advisory group meetings on future Monograph activities, and is assigned first-line supervisory responsibility for several scientists within the Section.

The incumbent serves as the Senior Toxicologist within the Programme, supervises the more junior toxicology staff, and advances the use of mechanistic evidence in Monographs evaluations. The incumbent assists the Head of Programme in carrying out the management responsibilities of the Monographs Programme.

Note: Start date for this position is normally set for as soon as possible. However, in light of the evolving Covid-19 situation (notably in terms of confinement and travel restrictions), the start date of the position may be impacted until such date that the successful candidate be able to physically report for duty in Lyon, France. DESCRIPTION OF DUTIES Key duties of the incumbent include: Knowledge about carcinogen mechanisms and associated molecular biomarkers are increasingly central to the evaluation of carcinogenic hazards. The incumbent will provide vital expertise in these dynamic areas of knowledge, especially as they relate to the key characteristics (KCs) of carcinogens. Under the direct supervision of the IMO Head of Programme, the incumbent will carry-out the following tasks: 1) Responsible Officer for one of every four Monographs working groups, prepares lists of agents for evaluation based upon evidence of carcinogenicity to humans, carcinogenicity in experimental animals, and mechanistic evidence (related to mechanistic class and the KCs of carcinogens), documentation of human exposure, and established priority lists; proposes names of scientific experts to be invited, taking into consideration expertise, geographic distribution, and gender balance; organizes systematic literature searches and retrieval of documents; supervises dispatch of literature and instructions to authors of working papers; maintains communication with invited experts, and checks suitability and completeness of incoming draft documents; coordinates editorial and technical checking of revised drafts for accuracy after the working group meeting; drafts a report of the meeting for publication in a scientific journal.

2) For each of the three annual Monograph meetings, acts as rapporteur for a subgroup on carcinogen mechanisms and coordinates the checking of accuracy of corresponding sections of draft monographs prior to the meeting and before editing, by reference to original scientific papers.

3) Leads the planning, implementation and publication of proceedings of IARC workshops and symposia related to carcinogen mechanisms. Helps to plan for, and participates in, meetings of advisory groups and scientific workshops on topics related to the IARC Monographs programme (one or two meetings annually).

4) Maintains scientific standing as an expert in a field of molecular carcinogenesis research, by participation in national and international scientific societies, attending scientific congresses and symposia, participating in collaborative research activities, and/or drafting or co-authoring reviews, book chapters, and similar documents.

5) Ensures that the Head of Programme and other professional staff in the Programme/Branch and the Agency are kept informed of recent developments in his/her field of expertise relevant to carcinogenicity of various exposures, by participation in cooperative national and international activities, occasionally visiting outstanding research centres, and sharing the results of these activities by presenting seminars and contributing to informal discussions.

6) Supervises other staff scientists, early career scientists, and visiting scientists in the areas of cancer bioassays and carcinogen mechanisms.

7) Attracts Research Funding from competitive sources.

8) Other duties assigned by the Head of Programme may include: representing IARC at other international meetings on cancer hazard identification; in Coordination with IARC communications staff, acting as spokesperson/expert in contacts with the media or with interested parties, on Monograph evaluations.

REQUIRED QUALIFICATIONS Education Essential: Doctoral degree in toxicology, pharmacology, chemistry/biochemistry, Molecular Biology, or another closely related field.

Desirable: - Postdoctoral training within or beyond doctoral field of expertise.

- Training in molecular epidemiology.

Experience Essential: All of the following are essential: - At least seven years of professional, post-graduate experience in one or more aspects of toxicology research in carcinogen mechanisms as described by the key characteristics of carcinogens (see IARC Monographs Preamble at, with resulting publications and including presentations of research findings in public forums.

- Experience in guiding scientific committees, either as chair or rapporteur.

- Experience in conducting systematic reviews of scientific literature.

Desirable: One or more of the following are desirable: - Leadership in inter-disciplinary and/or international cancer research projects, in international scientific symposia, and in international scientific societies.

- Experience in publishing scientific books or book-length reports.

- Experience in molecular epidemiology studies.

- Experience with the evaluation of mechanistic endpoints in a wide variety of systems, including in exposed humans and mammalian systems.

Skills - Thorough knowledge of molecular and cellular mechanisms of carcinogenesis.

- Deep familiarity with the concept of the key characteristics of carcinogens as an organizing framework for mechanistic evidence evaluation. Understanding of chemistry, metabolism, cell signalling, (epi)genetics and (genetic) toxicology, chronic inflammation, cell immortalization, including understanding of strengths and limitations of latest laboratory technologies relevant to carcinogen identification including “omics” and related bioinformatics approaches.

- Ability to analyse scientific literature critically and to summarize it accurately, clearly, concisely and quickly.

- Ability to interact effectively with scientists of various disciplines and of different nationalities – in-house and outside –, also in subjects/topics/areas beyond one’s own expertise. Aptitude to encourage, support and supervise staff.

- Knowledge of (or ability to quickly acquire proficiency in) the following software: MS Office (Word, Excel. PowerPoint, Access), PubMed, EndNote, RefMan, HAWC literature search and retrieval tools, CMS, publishing software.

WHO Competencies - Technical expertise - Producing results - Promotes collaboration and open communication in the team - Creating an empowering and motivating environment - Respecting and promoting individual and cultural differences - Setting an example - Moving forward in a changing environment - Promoting the Organization’s position in health leadership Use of Language Skills Expert knowledge of English is essential.

Knowledge of French and reading knowledge of German, Japanese, Chinese, or Russian would be an asset.

REMUNERATION IARC salaries for staff in the Professional category are calculated in US dollars. The fixed remuneration for the above position comprises an annual net salary plus a post adjustment which reflects the cost of living in a particular duty station.

Total fixed remuneration for this position currently amounts to USD 111920 (i.e. approximately EUR 93700) per annum which is the sum of: 1) annual net salary of USD 74913 at Level P4 of the UN professional salary scale, plus 2) post adjustment for Lyon, France currently amounting to an annualized figure of USD 37007.

The fixed remuneration is expressed net of income tax but before deduction of the employee share of contributions for mandatory participation in the united nations Joint Staff Pension Fund and in the Organization’s private insurance plans covering health, accident, illness and disability.

Other benefits include 30 days of annual leave and allowances for dependent family members.

Subject to certain conditions, internationally-recruited staff may also be entitled to relocation travel & shipment, settling-in grant upon appointment, home leave and/or education grant for dependent children.

Employment status is that of international civil servant.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION • We only accept applications submitted via our online recruitment tool, which should be filled out in English and include a cover letter. Application profiles should include the details of all work experiences to date (full career details).

• It is mandatory to attach a full list of publications. To add this list, please go to your profile under the dedicated "publication" tab.

• Only candidates under serious consideration will be contacted for assessment and interview (held remotely).

• This vacancy notice may be used to fill other similar positions at the same grade level.

• Any appointment/extension of appointment is subject to WHO Staff Regulations, Staff Rules and Manual.

• For information on WHO's operations please visit: • WHO/IARC is committed to workforce diversity.

• WHO/IARC has a smoke-free environment and does not recruit smokers or users of any form of tobacco.

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