Consultant: Marine Plastic and Impact on Marine Ecosystem

International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)

Monaco 🇲🇨

Organization: NAML-Radioecology Laboratory
Primary Location: Monaco-Monaco-Monaco-IAEA Environment Laboratories in Monaco
Job Posting: 2022-05-29, 12:08:00 PM
Closing Date: 2022-07-11, 12:59:00 AM
Duration in Months: 12
Contract Type: Special Service Agreement – SSA

Organizational Setting

The Department of Nuclear Sciences and Applications implements the IAEA’s Major Programme 2, “Nuclear Techniques for Development and Environmental Protection”. This Major Programme comprises individual programmes on food and agriculture, human health, water resources, environment and radiation technologies. These programmes are supported by laboratories in Seibersdorf, Monaco and Vienna. The Major Programme’s objective is to enhance the capacity of Member States to meet basic human needs and to assess and manage the marine and terrestrial environments through the use of nuclear and isotopic techniques in sustainable development programmes.

The Division of IAEA Marine Environment Laboratories consists of three laboratories, which are located in Monaco. The Division supports Member States in enhancing their capacity to use nuclear and isotopic techniques to understand marine and atmospheric environmental processes and dynamics, and to identify and address environmental problems caused by radioactive and non-radioactive pollutants and climate change.

The Radioecology Laboratory’s mission is to improve knowledge about the behaviour and fate of radionuclides and other contaminants in the environment, with a particular emphasis on the biosphere. It aims to assist and enhance Member States’ capabilities in the field of radioecology and its applications to ecotoxicology and biogeochemistry.

Main Purpose

In the framework of the project Isotopic tools to study climate and environmental change of Program 2. 4 Marine Environment, the consultant will provide advice and guidance to the project manager, the head of the Radioecology Laboratory (REL) and the REL scientific staff in the coordination of research on strategies for monitoring micro- and nanoplastics in coastal marine ecosystems, the optimization and validation of analytical methods based on vibrational spectroscopy for the identification and classification of polymers in the oceans and the development of harmonized protocols.  In addition, the consultant will contribute to the preparation and writing of technical reports and scientific papers. This activity is related to the NUTEC Plastics Project.

Functions / Key Results Expected

The consultant shall:

  • Provide technical expertise to implement microplastics monitoring programs to improve the ability of member states to assess the level of plastic pollution and associated impacts on the environment, public health, food safety, trade and sustainable exploitation of living marine resources.
  • Carry out experiments for the optimization and validation of methodologies for the extraction and analysis of microplastics in marine samples (water, sediments, and marine organisms).
  • Prepare and conduct experimental investigations on contaminant trends using environmental records.
  • Contribute to the TECDOC of guidelines and procedures for the sampling and analysis of microplastics in marine ecosystems.

Knowledge, Skills and Abilities



Skills and Expertise

  •    Marine Pollution Monitoring and Assessment



Skills and Expertise

  •    Isotopic Techniques to Study Pollution and Climate Change Processes

Qualifications and Experience

  • Master’s Degree – Master or PhD in marine environmental chemistry
  • Minimum of five years of relevant experience in performing activities related to marine plastic monitoring.
  • Experience in the use of atomic vibrational spectroscopy (RAMAN or/and FTIR).
  • Experience in the study of oceanography, ocean change and/or marine science.
  • Publication of research in peer-reviewed scientific journals is an asset.
  • Excellent command of written and spoken English is essential. Knowledge of other IAEA official languages (Arabic, Chinese, Russian and Spanish) would be an asset.


The remuneration for this consultancy is a daily fee of up to a maximum of € 250, based on qualifications and experience. In case duty travel is required within the assignment, a daily subsistence allowance (DSA) and travel costs are provided. Health coverage and pension fund are the responsibility of the incumbent.