20 October 2017
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The mission of WHO is the attainment by all peoples of the highest possible level of health.
Vacancy Notice No: HQ/13/RHR/FT284
Title: Scientist
Grade: P4
Contract type: Fixed-term Appointment
Duration of contract:  1 year
Date: 12 July 2013
Application Deadline: 2 August 2013 Vacancy declared unsuccessful
Duty Station:  Geneva, Switzerland
Organization unit:
The Department of Reproductive Health and Research (RHR) works to enable people to protect their own health as it relates to sexuality and reproduction and to receive quality health care in matters related to sexual and reproductive health. To achieve this, the Department advocates and promotes sound public health strategies, sets norms and standards, engages in technical cooperation activities, and supports research. RHR's overall strategic framework is provided by the WHO Global Reproductive Health Strategy approved by the 57th World Health Assembly in 2004. More information about RHR can be found at RHR includes the UNDP/UNFPA/WHO/World Bank Special Programme of Research, Development and Research Training in Human Reproduction (HRP). HRP is the main instrument within the United Nations system for promoting, conducting, evaluating and coordinating interdisciplinary research on sexual and reproductive health; for collaborating with countries in enhancing national capacities to conduct this research; for promoting and facilitating the use of research results in policy-making and planning for sexual and reproductive health care; and for the setting of standards and guidelines, including technical and ethical guidelines, in the field of sexual and reproductive health research. More information about HRP can be found at This team is responsible for research and development and setting norms and standards, with a goal of ensuring comprehensive sexual and reproductive health in the areas of adolescent sexual and reproductive health, gender-based and sexual violence, harmful practices, sexual and reproductive health in emergencies, conflict, humanitarian crises, and of other at risk populations. The team accomplishes work on research, evidence and norms, and monitoring and evaluation in collaboration with the other department's teams and other WHO departments and external partners, international partnerships and civil society.
Description of duties:
The incumbent will be responsible for the research and normative work on harmful practices, especially FGM (Female Genital Mutilation), in the Department. Objectives:
(1) Identifies opportunities and establishes priorities in clinical, epidemiological, behavioural, and implementation research on harmful practices and FGM;
(2) Develops a research agenda and strategy to address the determinants and consequences of harmful practices and FGM in line with identified priorities;
(3) Takes primary responsibility for the scientific aspects of implementing the research described in the strategy (formulation of research questions, development and implementation of research protocols, communicating effectively results of research);
(4) Establishes and manages collaborations with relevant organizations and institutions, including WHO Collaborating Centres in order to develop and implement the research protocols and achieve the objectives of the Team and Department;
(5) Assures publication of results in the scientific literature and identifies means by which to widely disseminate research findings and their implications for policy and programmes. Prepares technical progress reports on the topic, for RHR's governing and advisory bodies, WHO reporting requirements, and donors, as needed;
(6) Provides technical advice to Member States, UN agencies, other inter-governmental and non-governmental agencies on matters relating to harmful practices and FGM related issues especially in relation to research and evidence-based interventions, working in close collaboration with RHR Teams, other WHO Headquarters Departments and WHO Regional and Country Offices;
(7) Contributes to the development of guidelines and tools based on research results, as relevant;
(8) Undertakes fundraising activities for increased financial support for WHO's work in harmful practices and FGM;
(9) Carries out other tasks, as required by the Coordinator and Director.
MD or PhD in public health, epidemiology or a related field.
Ability to develop research protocols, their implementation, and communication. Demonstrated capacity to design, conduct and manage research in the area of sexual and reproductive health, specifically relating to harmful practices such as FGM and its consequences, which is evidenced by a track record of publications in peer-reviewed scientific journals. Excellent interpersonal and cross-cultural skills with ability and sensitivity to collaborate with developing country researchers, policy-makers and programme managers. Capacity to work in team environment, interact with external partners. Skills required to use e-mail, scheduling, word processing and presentation software independently and efficiently.
WHO Competencies
1. Producing results
2. Moving forward in a changing environment
3. Communicating in a credible and effective way.
At least 7 years of experience in conducting research in sexual and reproductive health, including in countries where FGM is prevalent. Work experience in international organizations.
Expert knowledge of English is required. Expert knowledge of another UN language would be an asset.
Additional Information:
The following priority order will be observed in the screening of candidates: 1. WHO staff members (Continuing, Fixed-term and Temporary appointments), 2. External candidates. A written test may be used for screening purposes. Other similar positions at the same level may be filled from this vacancy notice. This vacancy is published in English only.
Annual salary: (Net of tax)
USD 67'395 at single rate
USD 72373 with primary dependants
Post Adjustment: 103.3 % of the above figure(s). This percentage is to be considered as indicative since variations may occur each month either upwards or downwards due to currency exchange rate fluctuations or inflation.

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

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All applicants are encouraged to apply online as soon as possible after the vacancy has been posted and well before the deadline stated in the vacancy announcement.

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Any appointment/extension of appointment is subject to WHO Staff Regulations, Staff Rules and Manual. Only candidates under serious consideration will be contacted.

Vacancy declared unsuccessful

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