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Call for Expressions of Interest for Membership of the Scientific Panels and the Scientific Committee of EFSA 2023

Science Professionals
EFSA/E/2023/01 Requisition #
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EFSA applies the principles of transparency, fairness and non-discrimination in its selection procedures.

EFSA reserves the right to consult third parties on the professional experience of candidates and on the veracity of the information declared by the candidates in the context of their application.


Eligibility criteria

Candidates must satisfy the following requirements on the closing date for submission of the application:

  1. Citizenship of a Member State of the European Union (EU), or of a country of the European Free Trade Association (EFTA) or of an EU Candidate country. Experts from third countries may also apply and will be considered for membership of the Scientific Panels/ Committee if the required level of expertise may not be found among nationals of EU, EFTA or EU Candidate countries.
  2. Thorough knowledge of the English language (equivalent of C1 level or above, according to CEFR: Common European Framework of Reference for Languages).
  3. A level of education which corresponds to completed university studies of at least four (4) years attested by a diploma in one of the following fields: agriculture, biochemistry, bio-informatics, biology, biometrics, biotechnology, chemistry, dietary exposure, environmental sciences, epidemiology, food science, food technology, genetics, health and food safety, human medicine, life sciences, mathematics, microbiology, molecular biology, natural sciences, nutrition, pharmacy, public health, statistics, toxicology, veterinary medicine or related areas.
  4. At least seven (7) years of professional experience[6] relevant to the remit of any EFSA Scientific Panel/Scientific Committee, gained after obtaining the requested education diploma.
  5. Active scientific production, proven by authorship/contribution, during the last five (5) years, in at least five (5) of the following type of scientific documents:
  • scientific publications (authorship) in peer-reviewed international journals published in English, on area(s) relevant to the remit of any EFSA Scientific Panel/Scientific Committee, documented through a list of scientific publications; 


  • scientific assessments[7] (authorship/contribution) at national/international level, on area(s) relevant to the remit of any EFSA Scientific Panel/Scientific Committee, documented through a list of performed assessments/related scientific reports. 


Selection criteria

To assess their level of scientific expertise, applications meeting the eligibility requirements will be admitted to a comparative assessment carried out on the basis of the selection criteria indicated below. 
Each eligible application will be evaluated against the following 3 selection criteria in relation to their first Scientific Panel/Scientific Committee of choice. Candidates may also be evaluated in relation to their second Scientific Panel/Scientific Committee of choice or other panels, as needed. The minimum cumulative threshold to pass this evaluation is 50 points (out of 100).

  1. Experience in scientific assessment: Experience in carrying out scientific assessment in fields related to safety of the food chain, in the areas of competence and expertise of the preferred Scientific Panel/Scientific Committee. (40 maximum points out of 100)
  2. Scientific excellence: Scientific excellence in one or several fields linked to the area covered by the preferred Scientific Panel/Scientific Committee and proven through scientific publications in peer reviewed journals published in English. (40 maximum points out of 100)
  3. Experience in reviewing scientific work: Experience in reviewing scientific work and ability to analyse complex information in the areas covered by the preferred Scientific Panel/Scientific Committee. (20 maximum points out of 100)


Draft list of suitable candidates 

The Executive Director of EFSA draws-up a draft list of candidates including applications having scored at least 50 points in the selection criteria evaluation. 

The Executive Director shall assess the specific multidisciplinary expertise needed in the Scientific Committee and each Scientific Panel, with a view to making an indication for their membership and for the number of members of each Scientific Panel and the Scientific Committee.

To this end, applications inserted in the draft list referred above will be further analysed and mapped for the evidence of multidisciplinary expertise/knowledge areas (the specific multidisciplinary expertise of each Scientific Panel and the Scientific Committee are outlined in ANNEX I) as well as in relation to competencies considered as assets: project management, risk communication and chairing of scientific meetings.

As a result of the above evaluation, the Executive Director shall finalise the draft list of candidates and provide it to the EFSA Management Board, together with a proposal for memberships of each Scientific Panel/Scientific Committee including the indication on the specific multidisciplinary expertise needed in each of them. The proposal shall also include consideration on balance of gender and geographical distribution. 

Scientists should note that inclusion on the draft list of candidates does not guarantee appointment as a member of a Scientific Panel/Scientific Committee, which remains a prerogative of the EFSA Management Board, and that the score obtained is not determining a priority order for appointment consideration.


Declaration of Interest

Only experts with a Declaration of Interests (DoI) compatible with EFSA’s Independence policy and rules will be considered for the subsequent phase of the appointment. Candidates placed on the draft list and having the most appropriate mix of competencies and expertise in relation to a given Scientific Panel or to the Scientific Committee will be asked to submit a DoI, which will be screened by EFSA in accordance with EFSA’s Independence policy and with its rules on Competing Interest Management[8], in force at the time when the screening takes place. 

Candidates who fail to submit a DoI will not be considered for appointment as members of a Scientific Panel/Scientific Committee. Candidates may be contacted for further clarification on their DoI.

See below an example of what is considered a Conflict of Interest. 

  • Example: The Membership of Scientific Panels is not allowed for candidates who, at the moment of submitting their DoI, are employed by or act in a consultancy role for any legal or natural person carrying out any of the activities on which EFSA’s scientific outputs impact directly or indirectly, such as food production, processing and distribution, agriculture or animal husbandry. This includes any form of regular occupation or business, part-time or full-time, paid or unpaid, including self-employment (e.g. consultancy) to the benefit of the business operators above.

For questions related to the Declaration of Interests, please contact EFSA Interest Management at



The members of the Scientific Committee who are not members of the Scientific Panels and the members of the Scientific Panels shall be appointed by the Management Board, acting upon the above proposal from the Executive Director, for a five (5)-year[9] term of office.

Where candidates have equivalent scientific expertise, the EFSA Management Board shall ensure that the broadest possible geographical distribution is achieved in the appointments. Moreover, the EFSA Management Board shall endeavour to achieve a gender balance in the appointments.

An expert that has previously served as a member of a scientific entity (EFSA Scientific Committee/Scientific Panel) is considered eligible for appointment to a scientific entity provided that, at the time of renewal (the start of mandate), the expert’s past membership of the same concerned scientific entity has not reached ten (10) years. As a consequence:

  • Experts who at the time of renewal have served less than ten (10) years as members of a given scientific entity are eligible for appointment for the same or a different scientific entity;
  • Experts who at the time of renewal have served ten (10) years or more as members of a given scientific entity are eligible for appointment for a different scientific entity only.


Reserve List 

The Management Board shall draw up a reserve list consisting of candidates from the draft list who have not been appointed. The reserve list shall serve for future appointment needs for members of the Scientific Committee, Scientific Panels and Working Groups and shall remain valid until the end of the term of office of members appointed. 


Appeal procedures

  • Candidates may bring an action against any decision affecting their legal situation in accordance with Article 263 of the Treaty of the Functioning of the European Union. This must be done within two months of the receipt or notification of the contested decision. The action must be brought against EFSA before the General Court of the European Union:

General Court of the European Union
Rue du Fort Niedergrünewald L-2925 Luxembourg
Tel.: (352) 4303-1
Fax: (352) 4303 2100

  • As an alternative, candidates may bring a complaint about alleged maladministration in the institutions and bodies of the European Union to the attention of the European Ombudsman. Amongst other requirements, a complaint must be made within two years of the date upon which the facts on which the complaint is based became known. Before contacting the European Ombudsman and undertaking this step, complainants must have already contacted EFSA by highlighting their concerns. 

The European Ombudsman
1 Avenue du President Robert Schuman
CS 30403 FR – 67001 Strasbourg Cedex
Tel.: +33 (0)3 88 17 23 13
Fax: +33 (0)3 88 17 90 62 



[6] Professional experience shall be taken into account from the date on which the person fulfils the minimum education qualifications for eligibility. Any given period may be counted only once (in order to be calculated as eligible, years of studies or professional experience to be taken into account shall not overlap with other periods of studies or professional experience). Professional activities pursued part-time will be calculated pro-rata on the basis of the certified percentage of full-time hours worked. Paid traineeships are counted as working experience. Ongoing/completed PhDs in a field relevant to EFSA remit can be counted as professional experience.

[7] Scientific assessment = scientific advice, risk assessment, assessment of dossiers for approval of products or development of scientific guidance, carried out at international/national level, upon request from authorities and/or reference centres.

[8] For more information see EFSA’s website at

[9] The term of office of members appointed at a later date than those appointed at the time of renewal shall terminate at the same time as the term of office of the latter members.  


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