Senior Research Scientist – KeyGene USA

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KeyGene – the crop innovation company
KeyGene is the go-to AgBiotech company for higher crop yield & quality. With our intellectual capital, solution driven approach and collaborative spirit, we work for the future of global agriculture with partners in the AgriFood sector. Using our proprietary technologies and non-GM approaches, we support customers with the development of new and improved crops. Our goal is to help organizations with their toughest R&D challenges, combining our cutting-edge breeding technologies, bioinformatics & data science expertise and plant-based trait platforms. At KeyGene, we work in an international environment with more than 140 professionals from all over the world. Our company is based in Wageningen, the Netherlands and Rockville, MD, USA. 

KeyGene USA invites qualified individuals to apply for the position of

Senior Research Scientist

Vacancy number 17.007

As a member of the KeyGene USA team, the Senior Research Scientist joins a team of highly motivated scientists and builds upon a uniquely integrated analytics platform for translational agriculture. The Senior Research Scientist collaborates with the research team to lead conceptualization, initiation, development and hands-on execution of projects, programs and platforms in translational agriculture and helps manage the operations of the team to realize KeyGene’s research goals.

Duties and Responsibilities:
The position will exploit KeyGene’s proprietary technology platforms and trait identification pipelines to develop innovative and sustainable products that meet the demands of modern day crop improvement goals. Responsibilities include and are not limited to:

  • Initiation, realization and management of systems biology-based approaches that lead to innovations in a diverse range of crops.
  • Use of “omics” based approaches along with classical plant breeding methodologies to expedite development of new, commercially relevant row, tree, energy and fruit crop varieties.
  • Design and execution of studies to understand plant phenotypic changes and agronomic performance due to gene target modification. Specifically, the individual will help to create and then assess the phenotypic impact of targeted genetic changes generated through chemical or biological mutagenesis-based approaches.
  • Regular monitoring of the scientific landscape with the intent of identifying impactful technologies and techniques in plant tissue culture systems and developing new areas of expertise for the Company.
  • Building of organizational capability and fostering an environment of continuous improvement; keeping abreast of new technical, regulatory, and commercialization developments in the field.
  • Coordination and support of team members to ensure availability of all necessary tools and initiation of actions that safeguard the progress and completion of research programs.
  • Frequent monitoring and evaluation of research programs for quality, effectiveness and contribution towards overall objectives. As a team leader, a successful candidate will conduct routine appraisals and development meetings with the team members to ensure operational excellence.

Education Level:

  • PhD degree in a scientific competency area (g. Crop Science, Genetics, Molecular Breeding or related discipline).

 Experience:
The ideal candidate will have:

  • At least 5-10 years of experience in translational agriculture and crop improvement with a proven track record in applied R&D and innovation.
  • Demonstrated experience with principles of plant breeding and biotechnology techniques. Experience in molecular markers development, tissue culture, transgenic and mutation-based breeding approaches is preferred.
  • Experience with principles of field/greenhouse experimental design and statistical analysis.
  • Hands-on experience with crops of importance to the Americas (e.g. soybean, corn, wheat).
  • Excellent communication (written and verbal), problem-solving and multi-tasking project management skills.
  • Ability to work effectively in a team oriented-environment.
  • Ability to create and implement high quality innovative concepts for R&D development and execution.
  • Ability to design experiments, analyze and interpret experimental data using appropriate statistical analysis techniques and summarize studies to support regulatory submissions and commercialization objectives.

Other Core Competencies:

  • Entrepreneurship / Initiative
  • Vision
  • Customer oriented
  • Innovative leadership
  • Result-driven
  • Shared mindset

Work Environment:

  • Location: Rockville, MD
  • Frequent: Speaking; hearing; sitting; use of hands/fingers; handling or feeling objects, tools or controls; close vision; color vision; peripheral vision; ability to adjust focus
  • Occasional: Standing; walking indoors; reaching with hands and arms; stooping; kneeling; crouching; crawling; lifting and/or moving up to 10 lbs.
  • General: Moderate noise level (similar to typical open office environment with computers, printers and light traffic).

More information
Address all questions related to the position as well as your letter of application and resume to Sireen Khan, Manager – Business Operations: sireen.khan@keygene.com. Please mention the vacancy number 17.007 in your letter of application.