Peru: Research Scientist – Molecular breeding and Abiotic Stress Tolerance

Organization: International Potato Center
Country: Peru
Closing date: 15 Dec 2016

The International Potato Center (CIP) is seeking a dynamic and innovative scientist with expertise in conducting research on abiotic stress tolerance to design and support breeding strategies for abiotic stress tolerance assisted by molecular breeding and physiological tools.

The Center: CIP is a not-for-profit international agricultural research-for-development organization with a focus on potato, sweet potato, and Andean roots and tubers. Its vision is of roots and tubers improving the lives of the poor. CIP is dedicated to achieving food security, improved well-being, and gender equity for poor people in root and tuber farming and food systems of the developing world. CIP works with partners to contribute high quality science, technology, and capacity strengthening for sustainable science-based solutions. CIP is headquartered in Lima, Peru, with staff and activities in over 30 locations across Asia, Africa, and Latin America. CIP is a member of the CGIAR Consortium, a network of 15 Research Centers and 16 Research Programs mostly located in the developing world and supported by more than 50 donor members.

The position: This position will partner with expert teams both within and outside CIP from disciplines such as plant breeding, genomics and bioinformatics, plant physiology, phenomics and crop modelling. The Scientist will support the use of genetic and genomic resources, populations and varieties to enhance productivity in diverse tropical, subtropical and temperate environments and cropping systems. The Scientist will be based in Lima, Peru, and will report to the Crop Improvement Global Leader, with frequent international travel to the geographies where CIP research programs operate, namely sub Saharan Africa, South Asia and Latin America.

Duties and responsibilities:

  • · Exerts independent, state of the art management, scientific leadership and creativity when initiating, designing, executing and documenting research.
  • · Conducts research in potato and sweetpotato to design breeding strategies for abiotic stress tolerance assisted by molecular breeding and physiological tools.
  • · Remains current on molecular breeding approaches amenable to plant breeding by participating in professional meetings and career development activities
  • · Serves as a Principal Investigator and establishes collaborative research initiatives to identify traits contributing to drought and heat tolerance at the field level, establish marker-trait associations, and improve understanding of the genetic basis of such traits.
  • · Identifies and exploits valuable novel and existing genetic resources relevant for CIP breeding programs to enhance drought and stress tolerance.
  • · Designs and implements research projects, including collection of large phenotypic and molecular data, statistical analyses and data interpretation, and preparation of grants and progress reports.

Selection Criteria:

  • · PhD in plant genetics, plant breeding or plant physiology plus at least three to five years of professional or post-doctoral experience.
  • · Familiarity with large-scale field phenotyping, plant response to environment and G x E interactions.
  • · Understanding of and experience with current molecular breeding approaches
  • · Understanding of and experience with bioinformatics, database development and electronic data capture techniques related to plant breeding/molecular breeding.
  • · Experience and knowledge of clonal, polyploid crops is preferred.
  • · Excellent statistical skills, including proficiency with linear mixed models.
  • · Strong communication, organizational skills and experience managing staff.
  • · Excellent written and verbal communication skills in English; knowledge of Spanish is highly desirable.
  • · Experience in grant/research proposals formulation.
  • · Ability to build and lead research teams and collaborate across institutions and continents.
  • · Commitment to work in a multi-partner, multi-disciplinary and multi-cultural environment.
  • · Track record of relevant scientific publications.
  • · Strong team player, self-motivated, goal-oriented and committed to shared goals.

Conditions: Salary will be internationally competitive, paid in US dollars, and commensurate with experience. CIP provides additional benefits including employer-paid medical, life and disability insurance and retirement benefits. Allowances toward relocation, housing, home leave travel, dependents’ education and annual leave are also provided. CIP prides itself on its collegial and supportive working environment, which allows space for personal and professional growth.

How to apply:

Applications: Applicants should apply online through CIP’s Job Opportunities website (, including a cover letter, a full C.V. with the names and contact information of three references that are knowledgeable of the candidate’s professional qualifications and work experience. Screening of applications will begin on November 21 and will continue until the post is filled. All applications will be acknowledged, however only short listed candidates will be contacted.

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