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World Health Organization (WHO)

Consultant

WHO Research & Development Blueprint Unit.

( 2205381 )

Contractual Arrangement : External consultant

Contract Duration (Years, Months, Days) : 5.5 months

Job Posting: Jun 21, 2022, 3:27:28 PM

Purpose of consultancy

To provide strategic advice on vaccine research for priority emerging diseases in general and COVID-19 in particular.

Background

Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, there has been an urgent need to accelerate the research and development of candidate vaccines. Today, over 185 candidate vaccines are in pre-clinical evaluation and a further 102 are in clinical evaluation. While this trend shows promise for safe and effective vaccines to be developed against the novel coronavirus, more work is needed to implement clinical trial that will accelerate the evaluation of the most promising candidates.

In order to fast-track this research an international and global clinical trial has been launched by WHO coined the Vaccine Solidarity Trial. Such an international, multi-site, individually randomized controlled clinical trial will enable the concurrent evaluation of benefits and risks of each promising candidate vaccine within 3–6 months of it being made available for the trial. At the same time, enrolling patients in one single randomized trial will help facilitate the rapid worldwide comparison of candidate vaccines and overcome the risk of multiple small trials not generating the strong evidence needed to determine their relative effectiveness.

Following a WHO call for support, over 250+ research sites worldwide have expressed an interest in contributing to the Vaccine Solidarity Trial.

In order to be successful, WHO urgently needs surge capacity support in the following broad areas: (1) coordination & management (incl. through the Global Steering Committee and the global Data & Safety Monitoring Committee), (2) project management and WHO Secretariat support, (3) legal, regulatory and ethics support, (4) support for developing the Global Trial Master File, (5) clinical trial data management and related online/offline data platforms, (6) surveillance, pharmacovigilance and/or statistical and modelling analyses, (7) Vaccine Solidarity Trial operationalization in countries and clinical sites (incl. research site planning/preparations, local research team constitution and support, support for regulatory and ethics approvals of core protocol), (8) Global Clinical Practice (GCP) training, (9) Laboratory support, (10) Supply, logistics and cold chain support.

Deliverables

The consultant will provide the following:

  • Strategic advice on vaccine research and development for epidemic diseases in general and COVID-19 vaccines, with focus on clinical development pathways, study designs, regulatory pathways and critical appraisal of evidence. Work will be performed as much as possible through conference calls and in person meeting as needed;
  • Independent evaluation of the scientific technical strategies;
  • Identify research needs;
  • Technical guidance to the co-leaders of the RD Blueprint in outreach to external partners, including but not limited to the scientific community.

Qualifications, experience, skills and languages

Educational Qualifications:

Essential: Master’s degree in either epidemiology, biostatistics, public and global health.

Experience

Essential: Essential: Over 15 years of relevant experience in vaccines, public health at the international or global level.

Desirable: Working experience with emergency preparedness and response.

Skills/Knowledge:

  • Proven record of work with research institutes, international agencies and governments advising on clinical development pathways, study designs and critical appraisal of evidence.
  • Handling of large data dossiers for candidate vaccines & appropriate statistical analysis to generate reliable estimates of vaccine safety and efficacy.

Languages required:

Essential: Expert knowledge of English

Location

Off-site: Home based

Travel

Travel to WHO HQ to work closely with R&D Blueprint team when needed in Geneva

Remuneration and budget (travel costs are excluded):

Remuneration: Band level D

USD 12,520

14,400 per month

Living expenses (A living expense is payable to on-site consultants who are internationally recruited):

N/A

Expected duration of contract (Maximum contract duration is 11 months per calendar year):

5.5 months

Additional Information

  • This vacancy notice may be used to identify candidates for other similar consultancies at the same level.
  • Only candidates under serious consideration will be contacted.

  • A written test may be used as a form of screening.
  • If your candidature is retained for interview, you will be required to provide, in advance, a scanned copy of the degree(s)/diploma(s)/certificate(s) required for this position. WHO only considers higher educational qualifications obtained from an institution accredited/recognized in the World Higher Education Database (WHED), a list updated by the International Association of Universities (IAU)/United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). The list can be accessed through the link: (link) Some professional certificates may not appear in the WHED and will require individual review.
  • For information on WHO’s operations please visit: (link)
  • WHO is committed to workforce diversity.
  • WHO has a smoke-free environment and does not recruit smokers or users of any form of tobacco.
  • Applications from women and from nationals of non and underrepresented Member States are particularly encouraged.
  • WHO prides itself on a workforce that adheres to the highest ethical and professional standards and that is committed to put the WHO Values Charter into practice.
  • WHO has zero tolerance towards sexual exploitation and abuse (SEA), sexual harassment and other types of abusive conduct (i.e., discrimination, abuse of authority and harassment). All members of the WHO workforce have a role to play in promoting a safe and respectful workplace and should report to WHO any actual or suspected cases of SEA, sexual harassment and other types of abusive conduct. To ensure that individuals with a substantiated history of SEA, sexual harassment or other types of abusive conduct are not hired by the Organization, WHO will conduct a background verification of final candidates.
  • Consultants shall perform the work as independent contractors in a personal capacity, and not as a representative of any entity or authority. The execution of the work under a consultant contract does not create an employer/employee relationship between WHO and the Consultant.
  • WHO shall have no responsibility whatsoever for any taxes, duties, social security contributions or other contributions payable by the Consultant. The Consultant shall be solely responsible for withholding and paying any taxes, duties, social security contributions and any other contributions which are applicable to the Consultant in in each location/jurisdiction in which the work hereunder is performed, and the Consultant shall not be entitled to any reimbursement thereof by WHO.
  • Consultants working in Switzerland must register with the applicable Swiss cantonal tax authorities and social security authorities, within the prescribed timeframes (Guidelines issued by the Swiss Mission are available at: (link)-onu-geneve/en/home/manual-regime-privileges-and-immunities/introduction/Manuel-personnes-sans-privileges-et-immunites-carte-H/Non fonctionnaires et stagiaires.html
Tags: biostatistics, cold chain, covid, data management, emergency preparedness, ethics, global health, logistics, project management, research and development, social security contributions