Description of the job offer

Médecins Sans Frontières, an international humanitarian medical association founded in 1971, provides medical assistance to populations whose lives are threatened: mainly in the event of armed conflict, but also epidemics, pandemics, natural disasters or exclusion from care.

MSF WACA (West and Central Africa) was created in 2019 and aims to change the dynamics of the MSF movement. WACA is supported by a large number of doctors and humanitarians from Médecins Sans Frontières in West and Central Africa who wish to be heard, contribute and above all proactively assume the humanitarian mission of the organization. WACA reflects a humanitarian identity, an aspiration for MSF, a truly inclusive movement of people who share the values ​​of empathy for others. Its strength is based on the other MSF associations and its associative fiber is amplified by concrete operational objectives.

Why join us?

You will find yourself in a rich multicultural environment with many relaxation areas to exchange or simply create. The opportunity to test and learn. Every idea is welcome, your comments and opinions will be appreciated at all levels of the organization. The chance to be a key player in a growing and highly skilled team. And above all, great colleagues in a healthy work environment… (yes, yes…)


Department: Medical

direct manager: Chief of Epidemiology

Functional Manager: Chief of Epidemiology

Number of team members to manage:

Indirect: 3

Work %: 100%

Position based at: Abidjan

Mobility: Yes

Type of Contract: CDD

Duration: Renewable fixed term

Position to be filled on: As soon as possible

Main objective

As a frontline medical humanitarian organization providing direct patient care in response to epidemics, natural disasters and health crises, MSF-WaCA often has a unique opportunity to pilot and document new intervention strategies and control. Therefore, it is the duty of MSF-WaCA to rigorously document research so that it can be shared with others and influence changes in policy and practice in humanitarian medicine.

  • In terms of structure, operational research is under the responsibility of the deputy medical director and is technically supervised by the epidemiology manager of MSF-WaCA. It is carried out in accordance with the MSF-WaCA strategic plan, its medical strategy and in collaboration with the innovation cell and the digital transformation department.

The position of Advisor in Epidemiology and Operational Research aims to support research activities in the field, the capitalization of interventions and their internal and external dissemination. The support to be provided includes methodological support, implementation in the field, documentation (report writing) and dissemination of results (scientific publication).

Main responsibilities

Operational research

  • Support the Operations Department in the definition and prioritization of operational research projects.
  • Write study and operational research protocols and provide support in their implementation.
  • Comply with the requirements of the MSF Ethics Board (ERB) and national committees using the appropriate channels for ethical clearance submission.
  • Monitor the progress of studies and investigations in progress and ensure compliance with the protocol
  • Analyzes research data to ensure translation into information for programmatic decision-making
  • Provide support for writing manuscripts for publication in scientific journals
  • Ensure the publication of scientific articles in journals to increase the visibility of MSF WaCA in the scientific community
  • Implement advanced medical data analysis methods and disseminate these analyzes through appropriate channels within MSF WaCA.
  • In liaison with other team members, be directly responsible for the regular updating of operational research and documentation projects.
  • Write policy documents based on research evidence, program descriptions to inform or provoke thinking, guide advocacy within MSF WaCA.
  • In collaboration with the innovation manager and the projects, test innovative tools or strategies and document their relevance; if necessary, document the improvements needed to achieve the expected results.

Capitalization and documentation

  • Coordinate project monitoring and evaluation by systematically monitoring project logframes, analyzing whether performance has been achieved and identifying reasons, including opportunities to improve the impact of interventions.
  • Carry out secondary analyzes including meta-analyses and disseminate the results internally or externally (scientific publication) after technical and strategic validation respectively by the Head of Epidemiology and the Deputy Medical Director.
  • Coordinate the capitalization of projects and ensure the dissemination of lessons learned
  • Conduct visits to MSF WaCA projects to discuss operational research opportunities and provide operational support.
  • Support for junior or national epidemiologists
  • On delegation of the head of epidemiology, accompany junior epidemiologists involved with MSF WaCA.
  • Participate in training activities for the new generation of field epidemiologists capable of responding to health emergencies of the MSF movement and partner ministries of health.
  • Accompany junior epidemiologists on the methodological plan for the drafting of survey protocols
  • Support junior epidemiologists in setting up survey data analysis


Training / Qualification / Prerequisites

  • Medical or paramedical profile with at least a Master’s degree in epidemiology or public health (in the latter case additional training in advanced statistics or research methodology will be required)
  • PhD in epidemiology or biostatistics or public health on a topic related to tropical medicine (Asset)
  • Training or certificate in clinical research (an asset)

Skills / Abilities

  • Highly skilled in data analysis and use of statistical software (R and python or similar)
  • Ability to conduct meta-analyses
  • Excellent level in English and good level in French.

Professional experience required

  • Experience writing protocols, including methodological aspects such as design selection, calculating sample size, and developing statistical analysis plans
  • Proven experience in writing and publishing scientific articles in peer-reviewed journals (a list of scientific publications will be requested)
  • Field experience as a research assistant or monitor
  • Experience in conducting systematic reviews and meta-analyses

Language skills

  • English (excellent)
  • French (excellent)

IT skills

  • Good knowledge of the Microsoft Office package

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In a dynamic work environment, MSF offers equal opportunities for recruitment and development without any form of discrimination based on gender, religion, sexual orientation, ethnicity, geographical origin, profile, disability physical or any other discriminatory reason.

Female candidates who meet the requirements are strongly encouraged to apply.

NB: This job description provides a framework for the main responsibilities and activities of the position. It is not exhaustive. Therefore, the responsibilities and activities of the position may differ from those described in this job description due to organizational and operational needs.

Deadline: 15/10/2022 at 6:00 p.m. GMT Only selected candidates will be contacted.

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