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Chief Scientist (Health) Senior Civil Service

Employer
The Scottish Government
Location
Edinburgh, City of Edinburgh
Salary
circa. £150 K Pro Rata
Closing date
6 Feb 2022

View more

Sector
Special appointments
Contract Type
Fixed Contract
Hours
Full Time
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Applications are invited from candidates with the relevant skills and experience, who are interested in an opportunity to fill the role of Chief Scientist (Health). 

The closing date for applications is midnight on Sunday 6 February 2022.

The successful candidate will be required to take up the post as soon as possible. 

This is a three year fixed term and pensionable SCS appointment or secondment opportunity. Part time, three days per week. If secondment from an existing employer applies the successful candidate may retain their existing terms and conditions including salary.

Location and Working Pattern

The post will be ordinarily based in Edinburgh, however, in line with current guidance, you will be expected to work from home for the foreseeable future. This is a part-time role, but applicants on any working patterns are welcome to apply. If you are interested in applying on a job-share basis, please make clear in your application if you wish to be considered as a pre-existing job-share partnership or if you are interested in moving into a job-share arrangement. We will assess proposed working patterns against the business requirements for the post and discuss all options with candidates. 

The Chief Scientist Office is part of the Chief Medical Officer Directorate, one of thirteen health directorates reporting to the Director General Health and Social Care, who is also the Chief Executive of the NHS in Scotland. The post holder will work closely with the Chief Medical Officer and the Deputy Chief Medical Officers. 

The Chief Scientist Office (CSO) was established in 1973 and has had a Chief Scientist since its inception. The aim of the CSO is to identify, promote and encourage research which addresses the health and healthcare needs of the people of Scotland. CSO plays a key role in formulating and implementing the Research Strategy for the NHS in Scotland; the emphasis being on catalysing overall research strengths and funding research which is of direct relevance to the strategic priorities of the NHS. The CSO is responsible for one of the larger research budgets within the Scottish Government, supporting research infrastructure in the NHS and a range of grant and programme awards. CSO also has policy responsibility for health science innovation and, alongside the Enterprise and Innovation Division of the Economic Development Directorate, hosts the Scottish Health and Industry Partnership (SHIP) aimed towards strengthening Scotland’s innovation activities in health and social care in order to solve real problems and improve quality, efficiency and sustainability of healthcare.

The CSO covers the full range of public health, clinical and health service operational topics, including participation in joint initiatives with complementary funding bodies such as the other UK Health Departments, OSCHR (Office for Strategic Coordination of Health Research), the Medical Research Council, other Research Councils, major medical research charities and other parts of the Scottish Government. 

The Role

This is a unique opportunity for an exceptional candidate to lead research, development and innovation (R,D&I) in the Scottish NHS and ensure that Scotland continues to be an internationally recognised centre for health R,D&I; builds its dynamic life sciences sector; and places health research, development and innovation in a central role in the transformation of the health service and the improvement of health outcomes.

The Chief Scientist (Health) champions science as a key driver of the modernisation of the Scottish Health Service and the economy and Scotland as a come to place for health research, development and innovation. 

Overall Job Purpose

  • To provide the Chief Medical Officer with expert scientific advice on health research, development and innovation 
  • To champion evidence-based policy making and the contribution of science to the health service in Scotland. 
  • To ensure that Scotland retains and develops its health research, development and innovation infrastructure, and its vibrant life sciences sector.
  • To work with other UK funders of health research, development and innovation. 

Key Duties and Responsibilities

As the Chief Scientist (Health) for Scotland you will be responsible for leading R.D&I within the Scottish NHS and ensuring that Scotland remains an internationally recognised home of world-leading impactful health research, development and innovation. The overall purpose of the role is to identify, promote and encourage research which addresses the health and healthcare needs of the people of Scotland. The Chief Scientist (Health) will develop the health research and innovation strategy in Scotland in conjunction with NHS Scotland, universities, Scottish Enterprise and wider stakeholders, and champion evidence-based policy making and the contribution of science to the modernisation of the health service in Scotland. 

The post holder is a senior leadership position with the Life Sciences sector within Scotland, the UK and internationally, and will be expected to ensure a joined–up, strategic approach is taken in dealing with scientific evidence and advice. The post holder will develop and maintain positive relationships with stakeholders across the public, private and non-profit sectors, including participation in joint initiatives with complementary funding bodies such as the other UK Health Departments, OSCHR (Office for Strategic Coordination of Health Research), the Medical Research Council, other Research Councils, major medical research charities and other parts of the Scottish Government. 

The Chief Scientist (Health) is one of three Chief Scientific posts in the Scottish Government, all of whom are also ex-officio members of the Scottish Science Advisory Council, Scotland’s highest level science advisory body providing independent advice and recommendations on science strategy, policy and priorities. It is vital that all three roles work in partnership with each other. At the same time, each of the post holders is expected to maintain active links with the research community in the UK, both generally and in their chosen specialism. 

Key Objectives

  • To ensure that Scotland retains and develops its health research, development and innovation (R,D&I) infrastructure, and its vibrant life sciences sector. It is expected that data for research and innovation and capacity building will be initial priorities. 
  • To ensure that health research, development and innovation have a central role in the transformation of the health service and the improvement of health outcomes. To maintain high standards in approaches to scientific work, its creation, interpretation and use in the provision of scientific advice and challenge.
  • To take a scientific leadership role for future developments within health care including sustainability of the health service, data enabled research, the use of AI, genomics, inequality, amongst others. 

Essential Criteria

Professional Experience 

  • A senior academic, or held a similar senior position in health research. Having forged effective networks across the public, private and third sectors contributing to strategic scientific issues at Scottish, UK and/or international level using a broad knowledge of research structures. A very good understanding of Scottish Higher Education sectors     and the NHS in Scotland. 
  • Excellent communication skills – well developed interpersonal skills to command confidence from ministers, senior leaders and peers, to influence and network, and capably of translating complex and challenging issues for a wide range of different audiences, and of motivating, inspiring and building capability of a wide range of partners and stakeholders.

Leading collectively

  • Taking an effective whole system approach to complex, dynamic issues; actively developing wide networks internally and externally, breaking down and collaborating across barriers to deliver outcomes; 
  • Being a visible corporate leader, influencing and supporting corporate activities and goals as a member of a senior team.

Developing Others

  • Embedding an inclusive, learning culture in your teams, trusting and empowering others and enabling high performance and innovation;
  • Ability to actively manage wellbeing and create an environment where diversity of thinking and perspective is both valued and nurtured.

Leading others

  • Setting clear strategic direction and making high quality decisions which balance risk and stakeholder interests to deliver outcomes;
  • Strong communication skills and the ability to build visibility and awareness with partners and stakeholders.

Understanding and developing self

  • You will demonstrate a strong understanding of yourself as a leader as well as a passion for your work and your own continuous personal development. This includes acting as a role model for inclusive leadership by clearly articulating, with courage and humility, how your personal life experiences and background impact on your thinking and behavior.

Further Information about the Role

Further information about this opportunity is available in the online candidate pack. 

If you have any questions about the application process or eligibility, or would like to discuss any adjustments required please contact Diane Kinnaird (diane.kinnaird@gov.scot) in the Scottish Government Senior Resourcing & Staffing Team. 

How to Apply

Applications are invited by 6 February 2022 at midnight.

You will also be asked to register your details and complete the online application form. You will also need to download a separate supporting statement form.

Supporting Statement

This should be a maximum of 1,500 words and should explain how your qualifications, skills and experience meet the key essential criteria for the role. It is recommended that you consider structuring your statement to reflect these criteria. Typically candidates who use a sub-heading for each criteria are best able to communicate their suitability. If you feel that one example is sufficient to demonstrate your capability against more than one criteria, you may wish to address these under a sub-heading which combines several criteria.

CV

Your CV should provide details of your qualifications, career history with dates and reasons for leaving.

Please email all of the above documents to SCSHR@gov.scot quoting the job title as a reference. 

To apply, please click the apply button.
 

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