August 21, 2017

Field Scientist

POSITION SUMMARY

The Field Scientist will work closely with the Vice President for Research to ensure the smooth planning and execution of a new disease surveillance program in Western Asia. Primary responsibilities include facilitating and monitoring the execution of field activities for zoonotic disease surveillance in bats, and leading the training of local in-country partners in Western Asia. Position will be based in New York City with extensive travel to Western Asia.


MINIMUM QUALIFICATIONS

  • PhD degree in one or more of the following domains: Wildlife Biology, Disease Ecology, Ecology, Veterinary Medicine, or any related specialization OR …
  • Doctor of Veterinary Medicine from accredited veterinary school
  • Experience working internationally required; preferably in resource-limited countries and/or in remote sites
  • Experience or training in field research, wildlife epidemiology, and analytical research on zoonotic diseases
  • Experience working with bats is a plus
  • Laboratory bench skills (e.g. PCR); or general working knowledge or laboratory protocols is an advantage
  • Good understanding of tools and approaches for wildlife health monitoring and disease surveillance
  • Excellent communication and writing skills
  • Strong interpersonal skills -- must be able to work effectively and communicate with a diverse team of international collaborators
  • Computer literate, knowledge of data input, analysis and software (R strongly preferred)
  • Fluency in spoken and written English
  • Proficiency in additional languages including Arabic, Turkish, Georgian, Urdu, or other languages from Western Asia/Middle East is a plus.

 

POSITION DETAILS

Reporting to the Vice President for Research at EcoHealth Alliance (EHA), the Field Scientist will work with EcoHealth Alliance staff in New York and other in-country project personnel to assist in planning and implementing an international zoonotic disease surveillance project in Western Asia, funded by the US Department of Defense. The Field Scientist responsibilities include helping to develop and train field teams and assure best practices among field teams such that they meet sampling targets and biosafety and biosecurity requirements as specified in the project objectives. Training activities will focus on establishing and building capacity in zoonotic disease field surveillance with local implementing partners under the Western Asia program, and supporting the overall aims of EHA’s country and global programs. The Field Scientist will focus on field team development and sample and ecological data collection from free ranging bats, initially in Georgia, Jordan, Turkey, and Pakistan with later expansion to other countries in the region. The Field Scientist will also coordinate and monitor sample collection, storage, and transport with relevant collaborators. He or she will be responsible for supply and equipment procurement and management (in accordance with Country Leads), technical training and supervision of field technicians, quality assurance, technician performance and proficiency; biosafety best practices; sample management and transport, and project reporting. The Field Scientist will also help coordinate in country lab activities and data management as appropriate with EHA’s implementing lab partners. Duties will also include data management, data entry, and analysis. He or she will be responsible for becoming proficient in all relevant project SOPs, including passing all required project examinations, and ensuring project team proficiency. He or she will attend relevant in-country meetings with Government stakeholders or other USG entities and occasionally regional DOD meetings related to the Western Asia program or other EHA projects, as requested by supervisor. The Field Scientist will also be expected to supervise local research exchange fellows. Duties will additionally include contributing to project reporting, and co-authoring scientific papers, as appropriate.


PRIMARY RESPONSIBILITIES

  • Work with the Vice President for Research and Western Asia country collaborators, and other in-country personnel, to achieve the overall aims of the Western Asia Project, including: helping to establish and train field teams where necessary; oversee field sample collection from wildlife (bats); ensure safe and appropriate animal capture and restraint techniques are being used in accordance with project SOPs
  • Ensure the collection of ecological data in addition to specimens from animals, in order to characterize the animal-human-environmental interfaces at field sties.
  • Work with the EHA New York staff and in-country key personnel to ensure appropriate sample management and handling from field to lab, including biosafety practices, and data entry and management.
  • Communicate regularly with EHA’s Vice President for Research and participate in conference calls and meetings relevant to the project and other EHA projects, as requested.
  • Assist with the development and implementation of related projects as relevant within EcoHealth Alliance’s portfolio related to Emerging Infectious Diseases and zoonoses.
  • Maintain and develop new relationships with local collaborators, including partner country government officials, DOD representatives and other USG Government personnel, and other stakeholders.
  • Liaise with and help expand a network of bat researchers in the region.
  • Help generate monthly, quarterly and/or annual reports to funders, as required.
  • Help in-country key personnel draft IACUC protocols and obtain necessary US permits and permissions, including ethical approval for animal fieldwork, as needed.
  • Present research at scientific conferences and participate in meetings and EHA outreach events, where appropriate.
  • Assist with training of other project-affiliated field staff, including those from other countries outside of Western Asia.
  • International travel to the Western Asia region is required to locations that may include remote field sites in the following: Jordan, Pakistan, Georgia, and Turkey. Pending clearance and security concerns, additional countries may include: Armenia, Azerbaijan, Israel, and countries on the Arabian Peninsula. The Field Scientist may be asked to receive training from other EHA field teams outside of Western Asia, which would require international travel. 
  • Contribute to EcoHealth Alliance’s institutional direction and help achieve the next level of scientific research and funding.
  • Fundraising: identifying funding opportunities, participating in grant-writing, setting up collaborations, and meeting with donors and funding agency representatives
  • Professionally represent EcoHealth Alliance and work with stakeholders and collaborators at local, national, and international levels as agreed with the Vice President for Research.


OTHER DUTIES

  • The position will require supervision of technical staff as well as students and fellows in an international setting.
  • Draft and publish high quality scientific publications.
  • Participate in other projects and tasks as required or assigned by supervisor
  • The Field Scientist will be encouraged to attend conferences where appropriate for the joint purposes of professional development and promoting EcoHealth Alliance and its programs.

The position is based at EcoHealth Alliance’s headquarters in New York City with extensive travel to Western Asia. EcoHealth Alliance is an equal opportunity employer offering a competitive salary and a comprehensive benefit package including health, dental, and vision coverage, and a 403(b) pension plan. For further information about EcoHealth Alliance, please visit our website: www.ecohealthalliance.org

How to Apply:

Send an email with a single attachment labeled with your first and last name only (“first last.pdf”) in PDF format containing with (a) a cover letter, (b) CV, and (c) three references to jobs@ecohealthalliance.org with “FIELD SCIENTIST 2017” in the subject line. Emails without the subject line or with multiple attachments will not be received. No formal text is required within the body of your email, since emails will not be evaluated. All inquires will receive an automatic response confirming receipt. Applicants will be evaluated and only appropriate candidates will be contacted.

Thank you for your interest in EcoHealth Alliance!