The main aim of FAO Country Offices, headed by an FAO Representative, is to assist governments to develop policies, programmes, and projects to achieve food security and to reduce hunger and malnutrition, to help develop the agricultural, fisheries and forestry sectors, and to use their environmental and natural resources in a sustainable manner. FAO participates in the development and implementation of field projects in the sectors of food security, agriculture, and rural development. This requires the integration within the broader framework of sustainable food and agriculture that aims at increasing production and productivity, addressing climate change, and managing natural resources; and enhance rural livelihoods.
The Emergency Centre for Transboundary Animal Diseases (ECTAD) in Lao PDR is dedicated to working with the government in preventing and controlling emerging infectious and zoonotic diseases by working closely with national stakeholders in the animal production and health sector. The tasks envisaged for this position are to be carried out through the Emergency Centre for Transboundary Animal Diseases (ECTAD), which is currently implementing several projects in various countries in Asia and the Pacific region.
Under the overall administrative and functional guidance of the FAO Representative in Lao PDR, the operational guidance of the Operations Specialist, technical guidance of the ECTAD Regional Manager based in FAO RAP, and direct supervision of the international Lead Technical Advisor (ECTAD team leader), the incumbent will closely collaborate with ECTAD- FAO staff at country and regional level as well as with government counterparts and other implementing partners and stakeholders. Specifically, the incumbent will take the following responsibilities to ensure the smooth implementation of ECTAD programmes and other related national and regional projects.
Field project implementation and technical expertise on animal health, epidemiology or veterinary sciences.
Tasks and responsibilities
• Strengthen multi-lateral and multi-sectoral collaboration among One Health stakeholders.
• Strengthen the linkage of laboratory and epidemiology at the central level.
• Contribute to the development of comprehensive surveillance plans for priority animal/zoonotic diseases in Lao PDR
• Assess systematic surveillance and early warning capacities using FAO’s Surveillance Evaluation Tool (SET).
• Conduct epidemiological research as needed by FAO, DLF and One Health stakeholders.
• Act as focal point on epidemiology trainings and roll-out field veterinary epidemiology training for DLF staff, veterinarians, livestock officers and veterinary village volunteers at national and sub-national level including training of trainers and mentorship development for central and field staffs.
• Support staff from DLF to participate in Regional Field Epidemiology Training Program for Veterinarians (R-FETPV) and coordinate R-FETPV alumni follow-up.
• Coordinate the country’s participation for relevant regional epidemiology network activities.
• Support regional partners to conduct a review of community animal health workers (CAHWs) service provision and networks in Lao PDR by engaging with all relevant stakeholders, and facilitate the identification, collection and analysis of relevant documentation and information;
• Support NAHL technically, to maintain its workforce capacity to conduct relevant diagnosis of priority animal and zoonotic diseases.
• Support NAHL to participate in the regional animal health laboratory capacity development programs, including regional laboratory quality assurance, proficiency testing, biosafety improvement, and bioinformatics.
• Ensure that laboratory information management systems (LIMS) are established and are functional.
• Support NAHL to achieve ISO 17025 and regional reference laboratory accreditation.
• Participate in joint field investigations with teams from government (depending on the disease, with PH, Wildlife, WHO, DLF and others) at central and provincial levels.
• Continue to support sharing of information and biological samples through the relevant epidemiology and laboratory networks.
• Identify gaps of exiting data or studies of animal health information to inform risk-based surveillance.
• Support development of national animal health information and livestock movement database.
• Conduct regular value chain and risk assessment studies (utilization of animal health information) to inform risk-based surveillance.
• Support relevant government authorities at national and sub-national level to implement risk-based surveillance system.
• Review and strengthen the existing Rapid Respond Teams (RRTs) at all levels including development of refreshing training courses, and a monitoring system.
• Submit an end-of-assignment report upon completion of the assignment; and
• Perform other related duties as required.
CANDIDATES WILL BE ASSESSED AGAINST THE FOLLOWING
• University degree in veterinary science, epidemiology, laboratory science, virology, microbiology, food safety or related fields (Masters/PhD is advantage).
• At least 3 years of relevant experience in epidemiology, microbiology and/or project implementation.
• Working knowledge in English.
• National of Lao PDR.
FAO Core Competencies
• Results Focus
• Building Effective Relationships
• Knowledge Sharing and Continuous Improvement
• Public Health Knowledge: Understanding of public health principles, infectious diseases, and epidemiological trends.
• Laboratory Management: Proficiency in managing laboratory operations, including quality assurance, biosafety protocols, and proficiency testing.
• Surveillance Tools: Familiarity with tools like the FAO’s Surveillance Evaluation Tool (SET) and other relevant surveillance systems.
• Data Management and Analysis: Competency in managing and analysing data, using statistical software and information management systems.
• Regulatory Compliance: Understanding of ISO 17025 standards and accreditation processes for laboratories.
• One Health Understanding: Knowledge and experience in the One Health approach, understanding the interconnectedness of human, animal, and environmental health.
• Quality of both oral and written communication skills to foster collaboration among various stakeholders and effectively convey technical information to diverse audiences.
• Ability to plan and organize institutional and technical work and support work of multi-disciplinary teams.
• Extent of relevant experience in program/project management. Ability to manage multiple tasks, prioritize, and coordinate activities within a team.
• Experience in developing training materials, and delivery of training courses.
• Demonstrated analytical, negotiating, and advisory skills.
• Computer literacy for data management and analysis: Competency in managing and analysing data, using statistical software and information management systems.
• Specific experience of research, project management and organization of technical workshops or webinars.
• Experience to work with government authorities