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Isotope Hydrologist(P3)


  • Organization: IAEA - International Atomic Energy Agency
  • Location: Vienna
  • Grade: Mid level - P-3, International Professional - Internationally recruited position
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Physics and Mathematics
    • Environment
    • Water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH)
    • Scientist and Researcher
    • Nuclear Technology
  • Closing Date: Closed

Organizational Setting

The Department of Nuclear Sciences and Applications implements the IAEA's Major Programme 2, "Nuclear Techniques for Development and Environmental Protection". This Major Programme comprises individual programmes on food and agriculture, human health, water resources, environment and radiation technologies. These programmes are supported by laboratories in Seibersdorf, Monaco and Vienna. The Major Programme's objective is to enhance the capacity of Member States to meet basic human needs and to assess and manage the marine and terrestrial environments through the use of nuclear and isotopic techniques in sustainable development programmes.

The Division of Physical and Chemical Sciences is responsible for assisting and advising Member States in research and development for the nuclear sciences, especially the physical and chemical sciences. Specifically, the Division provides support to Member States in the following fields\: production of radioisotopes and radiolabelled products for applications in health care and industry; radiation source applications; research reactor utilization; applications of accelerators and nuclear instrumentation; nuclear and atomic data for applications; controlled nuclear fusion and isotope hydrology and geochemistry.

The Isotope Hydrology Section is responsible for planning and implementing the IAEA’s water resources programme. The programme assists Member States in the sustainable management of all aspects of their water resources, but with a particular focus on isotope hydrology. Major activities include internationally coordinated research, global isotope monitoring, capacity building, and technical assistance to Member States to help them with the assessment, development and use of water resources. The Section also operates a well-equipped laboratory for the analysis of stable and radioactive isotopes. The laboratory trains counterparts in using analytical techniques for high-quality measurements of isotopes in water samples.


Main Purpose


As a member of a team led by the Section Head, the Isotope Hydrologist contributes to a results-oriented programmatic response to Member States' priorities in the application of nuclear technologies to meet their development goals related to water resources.




The Isotope Hydrologist is\: (1) a technical specialist, providing expertise in the application of nuclear techniques in hydrology; (2) a programme developer and implementer, assisting in planning, and developing the IAEA's programme in the area of water resources assessment, development and management, and; (3) a technical expert, planning and conducting technical meetings and technical review missions, assisting in the evaluation of Technical Cooperation (TC) projects, and assisting in promoting, coordinating and evaluating moderately complex coordinated research projects (CRPs) in the area of water resources management.


Functions / Key Results Expected


 Conduct synthesis, evaluation, and geospatial analysis of isotope distributions in precipitation, surface water and groundwater to develop new or improved methods for understanding climate and hydrological systems.
 Provide technical advice and service to IAEA Member States in the design, appraisal and implementation of projects aimed at nuclear techniques in water resources management.
 Assist in the planning and implementation of programmes in the field of water resources management practices, conduct analytical studies, participate in task forces, and provide technical input to the policy and standards development of regional and international bodies.
 Evaluate technical cooperation projects, develop action plans and plan, organize and participate in seminars, workshops, expert missions and training courses.
 Plan, manage and implement CRPs and technical meetings aimed at developing or adapting new applications of isotopes in hydrology.
 Contribute to administrative reports and documents to be provided to senior management and governing bodies.

Competencies and Expertise

Core Competencies

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Name Definition
Planning and Organizing Plans and organizes his/her own work in support of achieving the team or Section’s priorities. Takes into account potential changes and proposes contingency plans.
Communication Communicates orally and in writing in a clear, concise and impartial manner. Takes time to listen to and understand the perspectives of others and proposes solutions.
Achieving Results Takes initiative in defining realistic outputs and clarifying roles, responsibilities and expected results in the context of the Department/Division’s programme. Evaluates his/her results realistically, drawing conclusions from lessons learned.
Teamwork Actively contributes to achieving team results. Supports team decisions.

Functional Competencies

Name Definition
Analytical thinking Analyses information to identify cause and effect relationships and correlations. Identifies critical elements and assesses consequences of different courses of action and proposes solutions.
Judgement/decision making Consults with supervisor/manager and takes decisions in full compliance with the Agency’s regulations and rules. Makes decisions reflecting best practice and professional theories and standards.
Knowledge sharing and learning Actively seeks learning opportunities and actively shares knowledge and information with others; shares specialized knowledge, skills and learning from experience across different situations and contexts effectively.

Required Expertise

Function Name Expertise Description
Hydrology Ground Water Hydrology Expertise in the use of environmental isotopes to assess hydrogeological systems.
Hydrology Isotope Hydrology Expertise in the application of N isotope techniques for addressing hydrological problems.


Qualifications, Experience and Language skills


Master's Degree - Advanced degree in Hydrogeology or geochemistry, or related geosciences. PhD would be an asset.

Minimum of five years of practical experience in the application of isotope techniques for climate or hydrological applications. Of those, at least three years of professional experience in the application of N isotope techniques for addressing hydrological problems.
Substantial experience in conceiving, formulating and successfully implementing field or laboratory research projects, including proficiency in the use of geospatial and hydrological models.
Broad experience and knowledge of the principles of natural resource management, particularly water resource management.
Strong technical background and practical experience in nuclear techniques in water resources management.
Demonstrated ability to conduct applied research with field and/or laboratory studies.
Proven ability to analyse technical and scientific information.
Excellent writing skills demonstrated through a record of scientific publications.

Excellent oral and written command of English. Knowledge of other official IAEA languages (Arabic, Chinese, French, Russian and Spanish) is an asset.




The IAEA offers an attractive remuneration package including a tax-free annual net base salary starting at US $64121 (subject to mandatory deductions for pension contributions and health insurance), a variable post adjustment which currently amounts to US $ 27187, dependency benefits, rental subsidy, education grant, relocation and repatriation expenses; 6 weeks' annual vacation, home leave, pension plan and health insurance


Applications from qualified women and candidates from developing countries are encouraged

Applicants should be aware that IAEA staff members are international civil servants and may not accept instructions from any other authority. The IAEA is committed to applying the highest ethical standards in carrying out its mandate. As part of the United Nations common system, the IAEA subscribes to the following core ethical standards (or values)\: Integrity, Professionalism and Respect for diversity. Staff members may be assigned to any location. The IAEA retains the discretion not to make any appointment to this vacancy, to make an appointment at a lower grade or with a different contract type, or to make an appointment with a modified job description or for shorter duration than indicated above. Testing may be part of the recruitment process


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