EFSA calls for external experts to set a quality working group

The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) has published in the Official Journal of the European Union on April 24th 2009, the launch of a selection procedure that aims to draw up a reserve list of external experts to be considered for the membership of a working group of scientific experts to externally review the quality of the scientific outputs of the Authority.

The Authority intends to have a scientific working group in order to assess the quality of the scientific outputs in the areas covered by EFSA’s Scientific Directorates and the Scientific Committee and Advisory Forum Unit.

The external review will cover an evaluation of a sample of already adopted and published EFSA’s scientific outputs to evaluate whether:

  • Best assessment practices were followed in the development of the output with respect to the collection, description, evaluation and interpretation of the scientific data.
  • Conclusions and recommendations were supported by an adequate description of the reasoning underlying the interpretation of the scientific data, with due attention paid to assumptions and uncertainties.
  • The terms of reference were adequately addressed in the conclusions

In order to be considered for membership of the working group for the review of the quality of EFSA’s scientific outputs, experts are invited to fill in the online application and to provide their preferences for a maximum of three out of seven areas of activities:

  • Chemical risk assessment and connected fields
  • Nutrition and novel foods
  • Biological risk assessment and zoonoses data collection
  • Animal health and welfare
  • Plant health
  • Genetically Modified Organisms
  • Risk assessment methodologies and emerging risks.

In order to be considered for membership of the working group for the review of the quality of EFSA’s scientific outputs, a university degree in areas including Toxicology, Ecotoxicology, Environmental Sciences, Chemistry, Biochemistry, Food Technology, Pharmacology, Veterinary Medicine, Human Medicine, Pharmacy, Biology, Life Science, Agronomy/Agricultural Science, Food microbiology, Epidemiology, Occupational Medicine, Public Health or in areas related to public health, at postgraduate level, will be required. At least ten years of professional experience relevant to the remit of the preferred area of activity at a level to which the above required qualifications provide eligibility.

Candidates must not have been actively contributing to EFSA’s scientific output during the last two years, i.e. after June 15th 2007.

Candidates are kindly invited to submit online their application together with their Declaration of Interests and to fill in the application form in English in order to facilitate the selection procedure. Applications must be submitted no later than June 15th 2009 at midnight (local time, GMT +1). For those sent by registered mail, the postmark date will serve as proof.

The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA)

The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) is the cornerstone of the EU system of risk assessment for food and feed safety; its scientific advice on existing and emerging risks underpins the policies and decisions of risk managers in the European Institutions and EU Member States.

The Authority’s most crucial role is to provide transparent and independent scientific advice and clear communication grounded in the most up-to-date scientific methodologies and data available.

EFSA brings together Europe’s best experts in risk assessment in the field of food and feed safety. They act in an independent capacity for the Authority — an autonomous, self-governed organisation that provides the European Institutions and Member States with scientific advice of the highest standard.