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Scientist (Toxicologist - IARC Monographs)

Lyons (United States of America)

  • Organization: WHO - World Health Organization
  • Location: Lyons (United States of America)
  • Grade: P-2, International Professional - Internationally recruited position - Junior level
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Scientist and Researcher
    • Biology and Chemistry
  • Closing Date: 2020-12-09

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The IARC Monographs on the Identification of Carcinogenic Hazards to Humans critically review and evaluate the published scientific evidence on carcinogenic hazards to which humans are exposed. These hazards include chemicals, complex mixtures, physical agents, biological agents, occupational exposures, and personal habits.

To achieve such evaluations, IARC convenes an international, interdisciplinary Working Group of expert scientists to develop each volume of the Monographs.

National and international health agencies use the IARC Monographs to guide and support their actions to prevent exposure to known, probable, and possible carcinogens. Accordingly, an overarching objective is to achieve the highest degree of scientific authority and trust in these evaluations.

More information about the IARC Monographs Group (IMO) at IARC can be found at the following links:

The incumbent is responsible for preparing for upcoming Monographs (vols. 128-134), which will be occurring over the next 12-24 months.

The incumbent is also responsible for serving as rapporteur in the Mechanisms Subgroups for these meetings, which are scheduled to take place starting February 2021.

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.


Key duties of the incumbent include:

1) Before the Monographs meeting, assist in identifying key studies and experts to be considered for the meeting.

2) At the Monographs meeting, serve as rapporteur or co-rapporteur. This involves acting in the best interests of the programme while:

(a) working with the subgroup chair, subgroup members, and IARC staff to ensure tasks are completed on time;

(b) recording the consensus decisions of the Working Group and verifying that revised drafts reflect these changes;

(c) ensuring that the work produced by the subgroup conforms to standards; and

(d) coordinating with the other rapporteurs to ensure that satisfactory progress is being made throughout the meeting.

The incumbent also contributes to the preparation of manuscripts for scientific publications related to the programmes.

3) Before and as needed after the Monographs meeting, review the text and tables to ensure their scientific accuracy, coherence of text, tables and summaries and overall scientific clarity. This involves checking the final text from the meeting against the scientific literature, making corrections as necessary, and responding to queries from the editor.

4) With the guidance of the senior programme staff, respond to external inquiries about specific Monographs or about the overall programme. This may involve giving presentations in English at national or international conferences about the findings of the Monographs meetings.

5) When serving as Responsible Officer (on an occasional basis), coordinate the preparation of a Monograph and its associated meeting, including identifying the agent and experts, developing the outline and writing assignments for the Monograph, coordinating the work of other team members, drafting the meeting summary, and overseeing quality control review of the Monograph after the meeting.

6) Actively participate in IARC scientific meetings related to the programme.

7) Contribute to writing grants with a view to attracting research funding from competitive sources.



PhD (or equivalent, for example MD/MPH or MD who is a PhD candidate) in toxicology, molecular biology or other closely related field (e.g. biomedical sciences, pharmacology, biochemistry, genetics or environmental science).



At least two years of professional post-doctoral experience conducting, reviewing, or evaluating studies in toxicology and/or molecular biology, in particular studies evaluating mechanisms of cancer or other chronic diseases. Experience leading, developing and reviewing multi-author publications regarding carcinogenic hazards, including chemicals, complex mixtures, occupational exposures, physical agents including radiation, biological agents, and behavioural factors. Scientific publication record in the fields of toxicology and/or molecular biology commensurate with the grade of the position.


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

Experience working in a multi-disciplinary scientific unit.

Experience working in a diverse multi-cultural environment and/or with a variety of international experts or partners.

Experience in systematic review methodologies.


- Knowledge of the scientific disciplines involved in carcinogenesis: excellent knowledge of toxicology and mechanisms of carcinogens, with a working knowledge of epidemiology and exposure assessment.

- Familiarity with the principles and execution of systematic review.

- Ability to facilitate discussions and guide committees to produce consensus scientific reports; to review manuscripts and tables for accuracy, and to integrate scientific information across multiple disciplines.

- Familiarity with preparation of grant applications.

- Because the topics of the Monographs vary widely, everyone in the Group must be scientifically versatile and flexible.

- Familiarity with Internet tools for file-sharing and bibliographic software (e.g. EndNote, advanced features of PubMed).

WHO Competencies

- Producing results

- Moving forward in a changing environment

- Respecting and promoting individual and cultural differences

- Communicating in a credible and effective way

- Knowing and managing yourself

Use of Language Skills

Expert knowledge of English is essential (read, written and spoken).

Knowledge of French or another language is desirable.


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 71745 (i.e. approximately EUR 61100) per annum which is the sum of: 1) annual net salary of USD 47895 at Level P2 of the UN professional salary scale, plus 2) post adjustment for Lyon, France currently amounting to an annualized figure of USD 23850.

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, under temporary appointment, internationally-recruited staff may also be entitled to relocation travel & shipment, settling-in grant upon appointment and/or education grant for dependent children.

Employment status is that of international civil servant.


• 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.

We do our best to provide you the most accurate info, but closing dates may be wrong on our site. Please check on the recruiting organization's page for the exact info. Candidates are responsible for complying with deadlines and are encouraged to submit applications well ahead.
Before applying, please make sure that you have read the requirements for the position and that you qualify.
Applications from non-qualifying applicants will most likely be discarded by the recruiting manager.

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