DNA SPECIALIST / GENETICIST
|Application Deadline :||02-Aug-12|
|Type of Contract :||Individual Contract|
|Post Level :||National Consultant|
|Languages Required :||
|Starting Date :|
(date when the selected candidate is expected to start)
|Duration of Initial Contract :||4 months|
The UNDP PFF is seeking a qualified individual for the position of forensic scientist (hereafter referred to as the Consultant) to support the identification programme of the Committee on Missing Persons in Cyprus (CMP).
The role of the Consultant will be to manage, together with another geneticist, the genetic phase of the CMP programme on the Exhumation, Identification and Return of Remains of Missing Persons in Cyprus.
Specifically, the Consultant will (1) interface with (a) the CMP Anthropological Laboratory; (b) the local DNA laboratory, where Family Reference Samples (FRS) are generated; and (c) the external DNA laboratory where postmortem DNA analyses are performed on CMP skeletal samples; (2) maintain copies of the FRS Databases of both Greek Cypriots (GKC) and Turkish Cypriots (TKC); and (3) provide synthesis of genetic data in a stand-alone report to the CMP Identification Coordinator (IC), and co-sign the final genetic identification report.
The principal framework of the mandate of the Committee on Missing Persons in Cyprus (CMP) is to assess the fate of the people that went missing as a consequence of the tragic events of 1963-1964 and 1974 and to provide answers to anguished families. One important aspect of this work is to exhume, identify and return remains of missing persons. This process will enable the relatives of the victims to recover remains of their loved ones, arrange for a proper burial and close a long period of anguish and uncertainty, thereby promoting a process of reconciliation, healing and dialogue between both communities. This project also aims to strengthen the capacity for civil society to engage in sustained cooperation and reconciliation, through the important participation of bi-communal scientific teams at all stages of the process. This bi-communal cooperation will strengthen civic participation toward an issue which is critical for the healing of old wounds, and will sustain partnerships of cooperation and trust between both sides. The broad CMP project includes:
- (Phase I) Archaeological Phase: related to the exhumation of the remains of missing persons,
- (Phase II) Anthropological Phase: related to the analyses of the recovered remains in the anthropological laboratory,
- (Phase III) Genetic Phase: related to the comparison of blood samples collected from the victims’ families, with samples from the remains, in order to identify them,
- (Phase IV) Return of Remains: within the framework of reconciliation programme, aiming at helping families of both communities cope with the difficult task of healing and coming to terms with their loss.
Duties and Responsibilities
Scope of work:
The consultant will be based in CMP Anthropology Laboratory (CAL) and will have the necessary access to the CMP-mandated Forensic DNA laboratories in order to perform his/her duties. The Consultant will be guided by the standard operating procedures of all laboratories, as they relate to the scope of the CMP mission. The consultant will operate under the CMP Identification Coordinator (IC).
Specific responsibilities of the Consultant are to:
- Manage the genetic phase of the CMP identification process;
- Maintain and update the copy of the Family Reference Sample Databases, both Greek Cypriots (GKC) and Turkish Cypriots (TKC);
- Receive preliminary and final DNA profiles from the lab performing the postmortem DNA analyses (i.e., consensus profiles and electropherograms obtained from teeth/bone samples) and create and maintain a database of victim profiles received from the external DNA laboratory;
- Manage the information related with the received reported profiles: build and update a victim’s genetic database, as well as a system for the data management (i.e., files, electropherograms, etc);
- Perform quality assurance and quality control of genetic case work by subcontracted laboratories;
- Interface with the CMP IC and the geneticists of the DNA labs to reach individual identification;
- Confirm likelihood ratios provided by external laboratory and combine with the CAL prior odds to generate the posterior probability of identification;
- Advise and assist the CAL Anthropologists on genetic matters/issues related to the interpretation and use of DNA for sorting commingled remains, skeletal element sample selection, interpretation of kinship analyses, and the calculation of likelihood ratios;
- Provide necessary guidance when no match to reference database is reported.
The consultant will:
- Provide monthly reports on FRS completeness to the CMP and subcontracted DNA laboratories;
- Provide monthly reports on the success/failure of genetic analyses from skeletal samples, including the number of samples submitted;
- Produce monthly progress reports as well as evaluations related to the identification process to the CMP;
- Other monthly and ad hoc reports as required by CMP;
- Write case reports confirming the match (or not) for the name of the missing individual with the match to the anonymous database provided by the subcontracted laboratory the performed the postmortem genetic analysis;
- Manage and update the victims and reference profiles databases and the genetic data in general.
- Displays cultural, gender, religion, race, nationality and age sensitivity and adaptability
Knowledge Management and Learning
- Shares knowledge and experience
- Provides helpful feedback and advice to others in the office
Leadership and Self-Management
- Focuses on result for the client
- Consistently approaches work with energy and a positive, constructive attitude
- Demonstrates strong oral and written communication skills
- Remains calm, in control and good humored even under pressure
- Responds positively to critical feedback and differing points of view
- Solicits feedback from staff about the impact of his/her own behavior
- Mass Disaster Victim identification, ancient DNA analyses from skeletal remains, and DNA analyses of blood and/or buccal swabs from relatives of the missing
- Interpretation of electropherograms for mtDNA sequencing, Autosomal-STR, and Y-STR profiling
- DNA extraction and analyses of compromised/archaeologically–recovered skeletal remains for mtDNA, Autosomal-STR, and Y-STR
- Databasing DNA results from relatives of missing persons
- Large-scale comparisons of data obtained from recovered remains against entire family relative DNA database
- Probability statistics (Prior and Posterior), generating Likelihood Ratios, and complicated kinship analyses that support individual identification
- Multidisciplinary settings (Archaeology, Anthropology, DNA) in order to achieve identification of recovered skeletal remains
- Management of accredited forensic DNA laboratories, including formal mechanisms of forensic Quality Assurance
- Auditing of forensic DNA laboratories according to best practice or accreditation guidelines
- A working appreciation for the methods, theory, and practice in forensic anthropology
Required Skills and Experience
- Graduate degree in Molecular Biology or related field.
- At least 5 years experience in the application of forensic genetics to human identification.
- Excellent knowledge of English and Greek.
Submission of Applications and Evaluation
Interested individual consultants must submit the following documents/information to demonstrate their qualifications:
- Motivation Letter: Explaining why they are the most suitable for the work.
- CV or Personal History (P11): Applicants are required to submit CV or P11 together with the online application. The UNDP P11 Form can be downloaded from: http://europeandcis.undp.org/files/hrforms/P11_modified_for_SCs_and_ICs.doc
- Financial Proposal: Applicants requested to submit financial proposal. Proposal will specify the monthly fee in EUR and shall cover all expenditures including fees, health insurance, vaccination, international (all travel to join duty station/repatriation travel) or local travel (place of residence to office and office to place of residence), cost of living and any other relevant expenses related to the performance of services. Leave benefits (annual, sick, paternity, maternity) are not applicable to Individual Contractor and absent days are deducted from the monthly fee.
- References: Applicants are required to provide the contact details of 3 references.
Individual consultants will be evaluated based on a cumulative analysis taking into consideration the combination of the applicants’ qualifications and financial proposal. The award of the contract should be made to the individual consultant whose offer has been evaluated and determined as:
a) responsive/compliant/acceptable, and
b) Having received the highest score out of a pre-determined set of weighted technical and financial criteria specific to the solicitation.
Technical Criteria - 70% of total evaluation – max. 70 points:
- Criteria A - Educational qualification as defined in the ToR (20%)
- Criteria B - Experience in the application of forensic genetics to human identification (20%)
- Criteria C - Technical competencies as defined in the ToR (30%)
- Criteria D - Experience in working with local communities in a post-conflict setting (10%)
- Criteria E - Knowledge of English and Greek (20%)
Only candidates obtaining a minimum of 70% of the maximum attainable score in the interview would be considered for the Financial Evaluation.
Financial Criteria - 30% of total evaluation – max. 30 points
Financial scores will be calculated using the formula [lowest offer / financial offer of the candidate x 30].
General Conditions of contract for the services of Individual contractor can be downloaded from: http://web.undp.org/procurement/documents/UNDP_GCC_IC_Final_English.pdf.
Individual Consultants are responsible for ensuring they have vaccinations/inoculations when travelling to certain countries, as designated by the UN Medical Director. Consultants are also required to comply with the UN security directives set forth under dss.un.org
Due to large number of applications we receive, we are able to inform only the successful candidates about the outcome or status of the selection process.
UNDP is committed to achieving workforce diversity in terms of gender, nationality and culture. Individuals from minority groups, indigenous groups and persons with disabilities are equally encouraged to apply. All applications will be treated with the strictest confidence.