02 January 2019

Postdoctoral Fellow or Researcher in vector-borne disease control and epidemiology

About the position

The Faculty Science and Technology at the Norwegian University of Life Sciences (NMBU) has a vacant 2-year Postdoctoral Fellow or Researcher position related to vector-borne disease control and epidemiology.

The applicant’s status, experience, and seniority will determine whether a postdoc or research scientist position will be applied.

The project that the incumbent mainly will be working on is entitled “School and community-based student-driven dengue vector control and monitoring in Myanmar: A cluster randomized controlled trial”. The short title is MY-SCHOOL. The project is funded by the Research Council of Norway for 2019-2022.

The long-term objective is to reduce dengue transmission and exposure to dengue risk factors in schools and communities in Myanmar. The project objective is to assess the impact of student-driven interventions on dengue incidence and entomological risk factors in schools and communities.

Dengue is the most common and widespread mosquito-borne arboviral disease globally causing >390 million infections and >20,000 deaths annually. There are no effective vaccines, preventive drugs or treatments. Therefore current efforts to reduce dengue transmission rely primarily on mosquito vector control. Although most vector control methods used by national dengue control programs may temporarily reduce mosquito populations, there is little evidence that they affect transmission.

There is a compelling need for innovative, effective and locally adapted approaches for sustainable vector control and monitoring, to which school children can be particularly relevant contributors. Schools have been engaged in national dengue control programs in several countries and school-based vector control research projects have been associated with better dengue knowledge uptake and contributed to improved school and community-based vector control activities. Hence, in this project, we aim to involve middle school students and encourage them to become actors in dengue knowledge transfer to their communities and lead the delivery of vector control interventions and monitoring methods.

Following this rationale, we believe that students can become pilots of decentralized vector surveillance and agents of sustainable disease control in line with recent new paradigms in integrated vector surveillance and control. This provides an opportunity to operationalize transdisciplinary research towards sustainable health development.

The project aims to improve knowledge of dengue and vector control in students and their parents by inducing active student involvement in community vector control and monitoring and to facilitate improved teaching capabilities by training of teachers and optimizing the general public health curriculum. This will contribute to the long-term project objective to reduce dengue transmission and exposure to dengue risk factors in Myanmar.

Main tasks

  • Scientific, technical, and administrative support.
  • Data analysis, interpretation and sharing of research findings,
  • International travelling to support project activities,
  • Develop and seek extramural funding support for new projects.

Academic Qualifications

Required Academic qualifications

  • PhD in medical entomology, epidemiology, or similar fields, or equivalent experience in communicable disease prevention,
  • Research experience in integrated vector control or epidemiology, with published work in peer-reviewed journals,
  • Experience from vector control, disease control and epidemiology of dengue,
  • Experience in working independently using statistical applications and mathematical modelling approaches,
  • Experience working in vector-borne disease endemic tropical countries, particularly in SE Asia.
  • Fluent in written and spoken English

Desired Academic qualifications

  • Experience in the theory and practice of COMBI (communication for behavioural impact) approaches
  • Knowledge of virological and serological aspects of dengue,
  • Knowledge of socio-economic aspects of dengue,
  • Documented history of development and funding of research projects.

Required personal skills

  • Excellent communication skills
  • Excellent personal and time management skills
  • Confident and proficient in the use of MS Office
  • Skills in the use of statistical software, especially Stata and R.

Desired personal skills

  • Experience in the control of other vector-borne diseases
  • Meticulous attention to detail and accuracy
  • Problem solving attitude
  • Positive work attitude
  • Flexibility, and able to work under pressure with tight deadlines.

Remuneration and information

The postdoctoral fellow position is placed in the government pay scale position code 1352 Postdoctoral Fellow, wage framework 24 (salary grade 59-67) (NOK 515 200 – 597 400), depending on qualifications. Possibility for promotion based on seniority.

The researcher position is placed in government pay scale position code 1109 Researcher, wage framework 24 (salary grade 61- 67) (NOK 534 100 -597 400) on the Norwegian Government salary scale upon employment depending on qualifications. Possibility for promotion based on seniority.

For further information, please contact Dr. Hans J Overgaard, Research scientist, E-mail: hans.overgaard@nmbu.no or visit this link 

Application

To apply online for this vacancy, please click on the 'Apply for this job' button above. This will route you to the University's Web Recruitment System, where you will need to register an account (if you have not already) and log in before completing the online application form.

Application deadline: 20.01.2019

Applicants invited for an interview will be asked to present verified copies of diplomas and certificates.

Up to ten publications selected by the applicant as most relevant must be attached to the application. If it is difficult to identify the contribution of the applicant in multiple-author publications, a short explanation about the applicant’s part of the work is suggested.

Printed material, which cannot be sent electronically, should be sent by surface mail to Norwegian University of Life Sciences, Faculty of Science and Technology, P.O. Box 5003, NO-1432 Ås, within 27.01.2019.

Please quote reference number 18/06716

About REALTEK

The Faculty of Science and Technology has 130 employees, about 1,100 students and about 60 PhD students. The Faculty offers bachelor, master and doctoral degrees in natural sciences and engineering in the fields of environmental physics and renewable energy, building and architecture, water and environmental technology, machine-, process and product development, geomatics and educational sciences. The workplace is in Ås, 30 km from Oslo.
Further information: https://www.nmbu.no/en/faculty/realtek

The Water and Environmental Engineering research group generates new knowledge and disseminates insights in the field of water and water treatment. The group carries out research in the interface between the subjects of water, environment, technology, medicine, biology and social sciences. A specific research area of the group is water, sanitation and health in developing countries, with a strong focus on vector-borne diseases. The activities on vector-borne disease research are expanding. For more information on research undertaken on vector-borne diseases, see www.nmbu.no/water.