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Vacancy: Research Scientist – biogeochemistry. Radioecology Laboratory, IAEA Marine Environment Laboratories

  • Primary Location: IAEA Marine Environment Laboratories in Monaco
  • Closing Date: 2024-04-09, 11:59:00 PM
  • Duration in Months: 36
  • Probation Period: 1 Year

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 IAEA Marine Environment Laboratories consists of three laboratories, which are located in Monaco. The Division supports Member States in enhancing their capacity to use nuclear and isotopic techniques to understand marine and atmospheric environmental processes and dynamics, and to identify and address environmental problems caused by radioactive and non-radioactive pollutants and climate change.

The Radioecology Laboratory’s mission is to improve knowledge about the behaviour and fate of radionuclides and other contaminants in the environment, with a particular emphasis on the biosphere. It aims to assist and enhance Member States’ capabilities in the field of radioecology and its applications to ecotoxicology and biogeochemistry.

Main Purpose

Reporting to the Radioecology Laboratory (REL) Head, the Research Scientist ensures the development and participation in international projects on research into marine biogeochemical cycles, as well as the organization and coordination of the laboratory activities (i.e., geochronology laboratory) in the assessment of the carbon cycling in the oceans and on Blue Carbon. Also, he/she contributes to REL studies applying nuclear techniques to understand coastal processes and environmental changes.


The Research Scientist is: (1) a programme developer and implementer, contributing to the fostering of collaborations with external institutes and organizations to develop international and multidisciplinary projects in the specific area of carbon cycle in the ocean; (2) a technical officer, providing scientific and technical input to developing, planning and implementing complex Technical Co-operation Projects; and (3) a project officer, coordinating and evaluating complex coordinated research projects (CRPs) aimed at promoting nuclear analytical techniques of a high quality in support of marine environmental research.

Functions / Key Results Expected

  • Provide technical expertise and assist the Laboratory Head in planning and implementing the programme in the specific area of carbon cycling, Blue Carbon, coastal processes and climate/environmental change.
  • Develop, plan and execute research on the use of natural radionuclides as a tool to study on the marine biogeochemical cycles and Blue Carbon.
  • Plan and organize field and laboratory activities to monitor and assess marine biogeochemical cycles and the pathways of contaminants in the marine environment.
  • Coordinate and manage the work of the Geochronology laboratory, by ensuring planning and implementation of the activities, provide technical leadership to technical staff and guest scientists/consultants, calibration of instruments, improve and further develop methodologies for age-dating of sediments, quality assurance.
  • Prepare and write scientific reports and publications on the biogeochemical cycling of carbon -, Blue Carbon in particular; represent the IAEA-EL in meetings and at scientific-technical conferences..
  • Participate in sea-going research cruises. Provide technical advice and guide consultants, research assistants, technical assistants and trainees in the laboratory and on sea-going research cruises.
  • Provide scientific and technical support to Technical Co-operation Projects, in particular to regional and inter-regional projects aiming to harmonize methodologies and strategies in the area of marine environmental studies using nuclear and associated techniques.
  • Provide support to the network of marine laboratories.

The incumbent may perform his/her work in areas involving exposure to radioactive materials. Therefore, as an Occupationally Exposed Worker, he/she must be medically cleared by VIC Medical Service and is subject to an appropriate radiation and health monitoring programme, in accordance with the IAEA’s Radiation Safety Regulations.

Competencies and Expertise

Core Competencies(Competency Framework)

Name Definition
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.
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.

Functional Competencies

Name Definition
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.
Partnership building Identifies and builds partnerships. Develops and maintains long lasting partnerships to strengthen relationships. Delivers programmatic outputs and acquires resources in support of Agency goals.
Technical/scientific credibility Ensures that work is in compliance with internationally accepted professional standards and scientific methods. Provides scientifically/technically accepted information that is credible and reliable.

Asset Expertise

Function Name Expertise Description
Bioscience Biogeochemistry Proven and extensive practical experience in oceanography and/or marine biogeochemistry.
Environment Environmental Radiotracer Techniques Proven experience in and knowledge of nuclear and isotopic techniques in marine biogeochemistry and geochronology in Anthropocene marine sediments.
Training Training Implementation Expertise in preparation of educational training material and in conducting training.

Qualifications, Experience and Language skills

  • PhD in chemistry, marine science, applied physics or a related field.
  • Master’s Degree – Advanced university degree in chemical oceanography, marine biogeochemistry, environmental physics or a related field.
  • Bachelor’s Degree – University degree in chemical oceanography, marine biogeochemistry, environmental physics or a related field with two additional years of relevant experience may be considered in lieu of advanced university degree.
  • Minimum seven years of professional experience in marine biogeochemistry and the application of radiotracer techniques including geochronology in marine studies.
    Experience in managing national and international programmes.
    Experience in managing scientific and technical staff as well as scientific research projects.
    Extensive experience/exposure at international level in the area of work.
    Strong publication record in peer-reviewed journals.
  • 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 $77326 (subject to mandatory deductions for pension contributions and health insurance), a variable post adjustment which currently amounts to US $ 46550*, dependency benefits, rental subsidyeducation grantrelocation and repatriation expenses; Other benefits include 6 weeks’ annual leave, home leave travelpension plan and health insurance. More information on the conditions of employment can be found at:

General Information

  • The IAEA’s paramount consideration in the recruitment of staff member is to secure employees of the highest standards of efficiency, technical competence and integrity.
  • Staff Members shall be selected without any unfair treatment or arbitrary distinction based on a person’s race, sex, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, religion, nationality, ethnic origin, disability, age, language, social origin or other similar shared characteristic or trait.
  • The IAEA is committed to gender equality and to promoting a diverse workforce. Applications from qualified women and candidates from developing countries are strongly 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): IntegrityProfessionalism and Respect for diversity.
  • The IAEA has a zero-tolerance policy on conduct that is incompatible with the aims and objectives of the United Nations and the IAEA, including sexual harassment, abuse of authority and discrimination.

Evaluation process

  • The evaluation of applicants will be conducted on the basis of the information submitted in the application according to the selection criteria stated in the vacancy announcement. Applicants must provide complete and accurate information. Evaluation of qualified candidates may include an assessment exercise, which may be followed by a competency-based interview.
  • Candidates under serious consideration for selection may be subject to reference and background checks as part of the recruitment process.

Appointment information

  • Appointment is subject to a satisfactory medical report.
  • Staff members may be assigned to any location.
  • Candidates appointed to posts in the Professional and higher categories are subject to IAEA rotation policy and their maximum tour of service shall normally be seven years.
  • 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.

IAEA Careers. More information.

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