Researchers from low and middle income countries (LMICs) are invited to apply for the fourth round of
the WHO/TDR Career Development Fellowship (CDF) on clinical research & development (clinical R&D).
Successful candidates will be placed with leading product development institutions, including
pharmaceutical companies that are participating in the fellowship programme ("host institutions"). The
goal is to develop human resources to promote high quality clinical R&D in LMICs. It is expected that
qualified professionals will enhance LMICs' product development capacity on diagnostics, drugs and
vaccines for infectious diseases that disproportionately affect poor and marginalized populations.

The host institutions will train individuals in situ in order to develop specialized skills not readily taught in
academic centres, including R&D project management, regulatory requirements and good health research
practices. On returning to their home institutions, the fellows are expected to become an important
resource for institutional capacity development to undertake and manage clinical research in accordance
with international regulatory requirements and standards.

All applications must be received by 24th September 2012 at the latest.

Programme description

The WHO/TDR Career Development Fellowship Programme consists of 12-month placements (timing is
flexible) in host institutions having the necessary resources to provide supervision and mentorship to the
fellow, through a staff member in its clinical department. The Programme also offers networking
opportunities through an electronic Alumni Network, as well as annual meetings of past and current
fellows. The alumni network contributes to the long-term sustainability of the programme by providing a
forum for discussion, improved interaction, collaboration and tracking. More information is available at

The following competencies are expected to be acquired during the programme:

  • Elaboration or update of the clinical development plan including life cycle management such as post marketing activities
  • Study preparation: study design, concept and main protocols; case report forms, informed consent and logistics
  • Study implementation: pre-study contacts, study initiation, monitoring
  • Study reporting: data validation, study reports, scientific communication
  • Administration and documentation: filing, tracking, financial agreement
  • Project planning and monitoring, including management of human and financial resources management
  • Clinical contribution to regulatory activities (registration dossier, license renewal dossier, PSURs, labeling)
  • Interaction with drug safety and epidemiology, drug metabolism and pharmacokinetics, and research departments in addition to external experts in the field
  • Review of scientific literature, knowledge of host institutions operating standard procedures, International Conference on Harmonization and Good Clinical Practice guidelines

Institutions are expected to provide the trainees with good exposure to general technical and managerial principles of R&D practices, through individual programmes with each host institution according to ongoing activities and trainee's field of interest and expertise.

Financial provisions

The CDF award covers the following costs:

  • one economy class return ticket (home - host institution- home).
  • monthly stipend based on the official WHO/UN rates for fellowships for the duration of the programme: the stipend is established in United States dollars (US$) and will be converted into the currency of the country in which the placement will take place at the official United Nations exchange rate applicable at the date of the payment. The current stipend at affixed rate of rate US$ 5 000 for the 1st month (travel rate) to cover miscellaneous expenses, i.e., passport, visa costs and vaccinations; and of US$ 4 000 per month at the standard rate for the remaining 11 months (resident rate).
  • A one-time allowance of US$ 1500 for educational support materials.

Other provisions

In addition to the above-mentioned financial support, the CDF Programme comprises the following support from WHO/TDR:

  • Insurance coverage on behalf of the fellow for medical expenses as well as death or disability compensation in case of accident and emergency illness for the duration of the award and complementary insurance coverage for non-emergency illnesses. The fellow will be asked to undergo a medical examination prior to accepting an offer of award. A WHO medical examination form should be completed by a registered medical practitioner in the fellow's home country and returned to WHO/TDR.
  • Support to attend one professional meeting during the course of the fellowship up to a maximum amount of US$ 3 000. This will cover registration fees, transport and accommodation. Support to attend the annual alumni meetings, organized by WHO/TDR up to a maximum amount of US$ 2 500 (subject to the availability of sufficient funds for this purpose). This will cover transport, accommodation and living expenses.

Please note that:

  • Neither WHO/TDR nor the host institution will pay for the fellow's accommodation: the fellow is required to cover all her/his own accommodation expenses and is expected to do so using the stipend.
  • It will be the responsibility of the selected fellow, before making any travel arrangements, to ensure that he/she holds a valid passport as well as necessary visas including transit visa(s) as required for the country of the placement and countries to be transited through. The cost of passport and visa(s) is the fellow's responsibility and will not be reimbursed by WHO/TDR or the host institution. Nevertheless, the first month's stipend at a higher rate (travel rate) is expected to cover these expenses (see above).


Applicants must:

  • be a researcher, a national or citizen, and resident in a LMIC;
  • be a maximum of 45 years old at the time of the submission;
  • have an MD or PhD with clinical and research experience in infectious diseases;
  • be staff member for at least 12 months of a LMIC research or academic institution, with activities relevant to WHO/TDR;
  • be computer literate and fluent in English as a first or second language;
  • be able to demonstrate how the experience gained during the training programme will be put to use upon return to home institution;
  • be committed to return to his/her home institution for a minimum of one year after completion of the fellowship.

Application procedure

The application should be sent in electronic format (Word or PDF only) to (no application form is required).

Reference letters must be scanned and attached electronically. The following information should be provided:

  1. Full name with the family name underlined.
  2. Date of birth, sex and nationality (copy of information page of passport or other identification document are required at this stage)
  3. Name, address, telephone number, fax number and e-mail address of institution where the applicant is employed.
  4. Telephone number for personal contact and possible interview.
  5. Educational qualifications, including place of study and graduation date (official transcripts and copies of qualifications have to be submitted with the application).
  6. A short list of three host institutions of interest
  7. One page maximum description of the applicant's current post and of the post held immediately before.
  8. One page maximum description of the applicant's current work/research interests including disease(s) interest.
  9. One page maximum description of how the applicant, if selected, plans to apply the skills gained during the training after returning to home country/institution
  10. An endorsement from the Director of the applicant's home institution including: a) the ability of the applicant to undertake successfully the proposed training; b) certifying that the institution will grant the applicant, if selected, the leave of absence required; c) guaranteeing the applicants' post, or another post relevant to the training, upon his return and that she/he will also be given the opportunity to use the knowledge and experience gained during the training. The Director should also indicate how the proposed training will strengthen the institution's capability to conduct clinical research upon the return of the trainee.
  11. A list of the applicant's publications and other abstracts or presentations.
  12. Recommendation letters from two senior scientists/professors including their full names, addresses, telephone numbers, fax numbers and e-mail addresses. Please scan and send these together with the application.
  13. Names and full contact addresses of two persons (not related to you and different from the providers of the recommendation letters) whom WHO/TDR may contact as your referees
  14. Applicants from countries requiring national endorsement should submit their applications through proper government channels. A copy of all applications should be sent to the WHO Representative's Office in the applicant's home country for information purposes. Countries needing national endorsement are Chile, China, Ecuador, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Sri Lanka and Sudan.

All applications must be received at by 24th September 2012 at the latest.

Selection process

A preliminary screening of applications submitted by the deadline will be done to verify their completeness and conformity with the above mentioned eligibility criteria. Eligible applications will then be forwarded to participating host institutions for review. Following this, a short list of applicants will be prepared and the applicants will be contacted to arrange a telephone interview. The final selection will be made by WHO/TDR in consultation with participating host institutions.

All applicants will be notified by WHO/TDR of the outcome of the selection process.

The placement should begin as soon as possible within the first quarter of 2013, subject to the completion of the administrative formalities and conditions and the signed agreement by the fellow, the host institution, the home institution and WHO/TDR. Further details will be described in the letter of award to be sent to selected fellows.

For further information:

Dr Pascal Launois

Special Programme for Research and Training in Tropical Diseases (TDR)

World Health Organization

20, Avenue Appia, 1211 Geneva 27 - Switzerland

Tel: +41 22 791 2659 - Fax.: +41 22 791 4825