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Science Professionals
EFSA/X/AD/2019/13 Requisition #
Scientific Officer - Molecular Biology 

The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), based in Parma, Italy 
is looking for a 
Scientific Officer - Molecular Biology 
(Temporary Agent, Grade AD7) 

Please send us your application by no later than 18 November 2019 at midnight (local time), following the instructions in the ANNEX

The purpose of this call is to establish a talent pool (reserve list) that may be used for the recruitment of staff when a position becomes available and will be valid until 31/12/2020. The validity of the talent pool may be extended.

Are you an enthusiastic scientist with experience in the field of Molecular Biology? Do you want to work for a dynamic and growing European Agency in a multicultural environment? 

We are looking for passionate and driven scientists with knowledge and experience in ONE of the following areas;

A. Next Generation Sequencing (NGS) and microbial genomics of foodborne pathogens or
B. Molecular characterization of genetic modifications in plants.

The successful candidates will support and contribute to EFSA’s activities in the relevant areas by searching and analysing data as well as reviewing/drafting scientific outputs.

Your key responsibilities
  • Search or obtain data and information, collect and collate them for preparing scientific materials;
  • Analyse and evaluate data for preparing working documents related to the scientific assessment;
  • Contribute to the drafting and reviewing of scientific outputs (through the provision of evidence-based risk assessment, if applicable);
  • Provide administrative and scientific support to the activities of the respective Panel and/ or Working Groups (i.e. preparation of working documents, scientific opinions, etc.);
  • Participate to the development of guidance and methodology documents when needed;
  • Provide technical support to manage contracts and procurement, including monitoring procedures;
  • Keep abreast of scientific and regulatory developments and provide information on legislative, policy and scientific aspects in the respective field; 
  • Ensure coordination with European, national and international stakeholders within the scientific activities of the organisation; 
  • Communicate and present scientific outputs by conveying the right messages and by making scientific concepts understandable to the public.
You will play an active role in an organisation that makes a difference to the lives of 500 million EU citizens.
EFSA employs approximately 450 staff members, and its Scientific Committee and Panels engage highly qualified and independent scientific experts. Every position within EFSA plays an important part in creating an inspirational environment in which to work and develop.
You will be joining EFSA at an exciting time as we are preparing for the implementation of the Transparency Regulation: EFSA will expand its mandate and grow considerably over the next few years.
To find out more about EFSA, visit us at

Life in Parma

Parma is a lively city of around 200.000 inhabitants located in the Italian region of Emilia-Romagna. Its centre is rich in art, there are parks and architecture from different periods. Parma is famous for its food, wine and its varied surrounding landscape with small villages, rich in history, medieval castles, and picturesque countryside. Parma is strategically located between major Italian cities like Milano and Bologna, and also within reachable distance of ski resorts, natural parks, seaside and mountains.

Salary and benefits

EFSA can offer the selected candidate a contract of 5 years with the possibility of renewal. 
The successful candidate will be recruited as Temporary Agent Grade AD7 with the basic salary starting from € 6,128.51 monthly, subject to an annual review of remuneration provided for in Article 65(1) of the Staff Regulations.

In addition to the basic salary, EFSA offers a range of benefits:

•        Various allowances to which the successful jobholder may be entitled, such as a household allowance, expatriation allowance (16% of basic salary), dependent child allowance and education allowance. The salary is subject to a Community tax deducted at source and staff members are exempt from national taxation.

•        A comprehensive welfare package including pension scheme, medical, accident and occupational disease insurance coverage, unemployment and invalidity allowance, and travel insurance. Further information regarding rights, conditions of employment and benefits can be found at the following links:


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

I. Eligibility criteria

1. General requirements

Be national of a Member State of the European Union, Iceland or Norway; 
Enjoy full rights as a citizen;
Have fulfilled any obligations imposed by laws concerning military service;
Be physically fit to perform the duties linked to the post;[1]
Have a thorough knowledge of one of the EU official languages and a satisfactory knowledge of another EU language;
Meet the character requirements for the duties involved;

2. Qualifications

A level of education which corresponds to completed university studies of at least four (4) years attested by a diploma [2] in one of the following fields: veterinary medicine, microbiology, molecular biology, food science and technology, genetics, plant physiology, bioinformatics, biochemistry, biotechnology or related areas.
A level of education which corresponds to completed university studies attested by a diploma in one of the following fields: veterinary medicine, microbiology, molecular biology, food science and technology, genetics, plant physiology, bioinformatics, biochemistry, biotechnology or related areas and an appropriate professional experience of at least one (1) year when the normal period of university education is at least three (3) years.[2]

3. Experience

In addition to the above, at least six (6) years of relevant and proven professional experience gained after obtaining the diploma.[3]

In case you do not fulfil all the eligibility criteria, your application will not be taken into consideration.

II. Selection criteria

1. Technical competencies

i. Professional experience, preferably gained in a multicultural environment, in one of the following areas;
a) Next Generation Sequencing (NGS) and microbial genomics (including WGS and / or metagenomics) of foodborne pathogens or
b) Scientific areas relevant to the Molecular characterization of genetic modifications in plants (transformation process, molecular analysis and expression of inserted DNA, inheritance and stability of inserted DNA, bioinformatics analysis, Next generation sequencing).
ii. Experience in generating, collecting and collating evidence in the areas indicated above.
iii. Demonstrated experience in writing and reviewing scientific documents such as scientific articles, reports, opinions and guidance documents using appropriate scientific terminology.
iv. Ability to communicate scientific outputs by conveying the message in a transparent and understandable way for different target audiences.
v. Proven experience in analysing and interpreting data preferably gained in a scientific environment.

The following are considered an asset:

vi. Experience with the risk assessment of genetic modifications;
vii. Experience in the assessment of foodborne outbreaks at EU level by using whole genome sequencing data, and knowledge of the EU framework in the area of foodborne outbreak detection and investigation;
viii. A PhD in a scientific area directly relevant to the job.

2. Behavioural competencies

i. Communication and English: Strong ability to communicate clearly and effectively in both spoken and written English;
ii. Working with projects: Ability to prioritise the most important tasks, to work flexibly and to quickly focus on the critical issues and put the trivial aside;  
iii. Working with others: Ability to express opinions and information clearly within EFSA or externally; 
iv. Achieving results: Ability to take personal responsibility and initiative for delivering high quality work.


For the purpose of shortlisting candidates to be invited to the assessment phase, the applications' screening will be carried out using solely the information provided by candidates in the section "Job specific questions" of the online application form. Candidates are invited to carefully complete their application, following the instructions in the ANNEX that represents an integral part of this vacancy.


[1] Before appointment, a successful candidate shall be medically examined by an institution’s medical officer in order that the European Food Safety Authority may be satisfied that he/she fulfils the requirement of article 28(e) of the Staff Regulations of the Officials of the European Communities.

[2] Any academic qualification mentioned in the application form shall be duly supported by evidence (original or certified copies of e.g. diplomas, certification, etc.) Only qualifications issued by EU Member State authorities and qualifications recognised as equivalent by the relevant EU Member State authorities will be accepted. In instances where diplomas are obtained from a non-EU Member State, EFSA may request the candidate to provide a relevant document of comparability issued by a recognised authority.

[3] Any professional experience mentioned in the application form shall be duly supported by evidence (original or certified copies of e.g. contracts, payslips etc.). Professional experience shall be taken into account from the date on which the person fulfils the minimum qualifications for engagement. In order for your professional experience to be taken into consideration, it must be supported by relevant documents attesting an actual work relationship defined by the following elements: real, genuine work; on a paid basis; as employee (any type of contract), or provider of a service.  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. Remunerated PhDs acquired in a field relevant to the job description can be counted as professional experience up to 3 years. Paid traineeships are counted as working experience. Prior to contract signature, the successful candidate(s) will need to provide original versions of documents proving the candidate’s work experience.

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