ILRI PhD Graduate Fellowships - Hazard Assessment for Food in East African Community

ILRI PhD Graduate Fellowships - Hazard Assessment for Food in East African Community

  • The International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI) seeks to recruit a PhD student to undertake research on Development of data management & analysis pipeline for integrated surveillance of endemic and emerging zoonoses in Kenya.

  • ILRI works to improve food and nutritional security and reduce poverty in developing countries through research for efficient, safe and sustainable use of livestock. It is the only one of 15 CGIAR research centers dedicated entirely to animal agriculture research for the developing world. Co-hosted by Kenya and Ethiopia, it has regional or country offices in East, South and Southern Asia as well as Central, East, Southern and West Africa.

  • The One Health Research, Education and Outreach Centre in Africa (OHRECA) at ILRI, seeks to improve the health of humans, animals and ecosystems through capacity development, strengthening of local, regional and global networks and provision of evidence-based policy advice on One Health in sub-Saharan Africa. The centre has four thematic areas: control of neglected tropical zoonotic diseases, emerging infectious diseases, food safety and informal markets, and prevention and control of antimicrobial resistance.

    About the position:

  • Foodborne diseases have a health burden comparable to malaria, HIV-AIDs or tuberculosis. Around 98% of this burden falls on low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). The economic cost is over $100 billion USD a year. The riskiest foods from a health perspective are also the most nutritious: milk, eggs, fish, meat and fresh vegetables. These fresh foods are mostly sold through the informal sector comprising markets, small shops, street vendors and providers of ready to eat foods.

  • Only recently is the health and economic burden of foodborne disease in LMICs starting to emerge. However, there is little empirical information on the hazards, risks and health burden attributable to food in most developing countries

  • ILRI is engaged with East African Community (EAC) countries to investigate food safety and make recommendations for improvement. We have conducted a situational analysis of food safety in the EAC countries but this has focused on literature review, key informant interviews, policy review and stakeholder engagement. We plan to add a hazard survey.

    Project title:

  • Hazard
    assessment for food in East African Community countries.

    Key responsibilities:

    This graduate fellowship involves;

  • Finding out the priority hazards, and in which commodities in EAC countries.

  • Developing a probabilistic survey to sample commodities with priority hazards from formal and informal markets.

  • Conducting or supporting tests for hazards in food.

  • Assessing the implications for public health.

  • Developing recommendations for improving food safety.

    Required Qualifications:

  • Master’s degree with a minimum average of 60% in all areas of assessment in a relevant area to the proposed research project.

  • 1st Class or 2nd Class (upper division) Bachelors degree.

    Experience & Skills:

  • Previous experience of undertaking research.

  • Experience of food safety, public health, epidemiology, evaluation.

  • An understanding of food systems.

  • Previous research experience in laboratory testing for hazards.

  • Previous experience of food systems fieldwork.

  • Knowledge/experience of conducting surveys.

  • Ability to communicate in French.

  • Ability to work for weeks/months in developing countries.

    Personal Attributes:

  • Able to, under guidance, complete independent work successfully.

  • Able to work with partners in EAC countries.

  • East African nationals are encouraged to apply.

  • Location: Nairobi, Kenya – must be prepared to travel internationally

    Duration: 3 years.

    Terms of appointment and stipend:

  • This is an appointment for 3 years. Start date will be agreed with the selected candidate, but ideally from April, 2021


  • ILRI will offer a monthly stipend to cover living expenses in the project location, medical insurance, and cover research expenses and university fees.

  • The successful applicant will be expected to register at a Kenyan university and will receive capacity development from ILRI and opportunities to attend conferences and overseas travel.

    How to apply:

  • For more information and job application details, see; ILRI PhD Graduate Fellowships - Hazard Assessment for Food in East African Community

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