View Vacancy -- Programme Manager - Replacement Technologies - NC3Rs 1521

Open Date
25/03/2021, 14:00
Close Date
03/05/2021, 23:55

Application of the 3Rs plays an essential role in achieving scientific excellence. The NC3Rs supports the development and uptake of new research tools and models with reduced reliance on the use of animals and/or improved animal welfare. Our activities are divided between our role as a 3Rs research funder and programmes led by our own team of scientists. Further information can be found at

The last decade has seen the emergence and growth of technologies to replace the use of animals in research and testing. These include tissue engineering, stem cell technologies, bioprinting, microphysiological systems and AI and machine learning. Despite the enormous potential there is much to do to raise awareness and build confidence in replacement technologies and ensure that the scientific, commercial and ethical benefits they provide are realised.

We have an active programme on replacement technologies which engages stakeholders from academia, industry, small companies and research funders. The focus is on supporting research and innovation. This new role is intended to champion the outputs arising from NC3Rs awards as well as initiating and leading new activities that embed replacement into policy and practice, nationally and internationally.

UK Research and Innovation is a new entity that brings together nine partners to create an independent organisation with a strong voice for research and innovation, more information can be found

MRC - 3
£40,016 - £46,643 plus London allowances
Full Time

Role of Programme Manager – Replacement Technologies

The primary purpose of this role is to facilitate an increase in the availability and use of approaches that replace in vivo studies in academia and industry by: 

  • Acting as the main point of contact and knowledge holder for replacement science and technology in the NC3Rs helping to raise the visibility of non-animal alternatives in its stakeholder community.

  • Identifying, developing and leading specific projects related to replacement – focusing on the review of research fields and technologies, and the development and implementation of scientific and policy initiatives.

  • Championing the outputs and impacts of NC3Rs research and innovation awards that focus on replacement.

The main duties of the Programme Manager include:

  • Horizon scanning for replacement opportunities, including keeping abreast of emerging technologies with replacement potential. 
  • Leading expert working groups, preparing reports and papers, and organising scientific events to increase the availability of replacement approaches and support their uptake into day-to-day practice. 
  • Establishing relevant networks and partnerships to support the replacement programme. 
  • Generating and communicating the evidence base to build confidence in, and raise awareness of, replacement approaches, including representing the NC3Rs at external events nationally and internationally. This includes liaising with the NC3Rs communications team to produce case studies and news articles for use online with scientific and lay audiences. 
  • Working with colleagues in the research and innovation funding teams to maximise the NC3Rs investment in replacement approaches, including liaising with award holders. 

Education, qualifications and training:

A PhD in a biological science is essential (ideally including in vitro or in silico approaches).

Previous work experience:

Post-doctoral experience is essential ideally in a technology that has the potential to replace the use of animals. An understanding of the barriers/ challenges faced in achieving technology uptake is also desirable. Experience of using various approaches to horizon scan for scientific and technological advances within a field is desirable, as is experience of analysing and summarising research outputs and impacts. The ability to develop, influence and maintain excellent relationships with the full range of NC3Rs scientific stakeholders.

Other experience and knowledge:

A comprehensive understanding of the issues around the use of animals in research and a demonstrable commitment to the 3Rs is essential. The role requires the ability to engage with a range of scientific issues and the abilities to assimilate information from a range of sources, think creatively and develop novel solutions to specific challenges and manage a varied workload. Strong organisational and planning skills are essential.

Personal skills, behaviours and qualities:

Excellent oral and written communication skills, close attention to detail and accuracy, and the ability to tailor style and content to a range of scientific, executive and lay audiences is essential. The role requires a team player for collaborative working both within the NC3Rs and externally with stakeholders. 

This role will report to Dr Anthony Holmes, Director of Science and Technology. The position is an open-ended (full-time) contract. Salary will be in the range of £40,016 - £46,643 per annum (plus London allowances) depending on skills and experience.

The successful candidate will be subject to security checks.

There will be no formal staff management responsibilities.

The closing date for applications is Monday 3 May 2021.

Please ensure you include a copy of your CV and a covering letter. Your cover letter should outline and explain how you meet the criteria listed in the person specification for this position.

Interviews will take place in May 2021.

The NC3Rs is an autonomous body responsible for setting and delivering its strategy and managing its resources. It is not an independent public bodyand for this reason it operates under the umbrella of the Medical Research Council (MRC), using some of the MRC administrative systems. A service agreement exists between the NC3Rs and the MRC. NC3Rs staff are appointed to the appropriate MRC Band and immediately seconded to the NC3Rs.

Choosing to come to work at the NC3Rs (part of UKRI) means that you will have access to a whole host of benefits from a defined benefit pension scheme and excellent holiday entitlement to access to employee shopping/travel discounts and salary sacrifice cycle to work scheme, as well as the chance to put the NC3Rs and UKRI on your CV in the future.

Our success is dependent upon our ability to embrace diversity and draw on the skills, understanding and experience of all our people. We welcome applications from all sections of the community irrespective of gender, race, ethnic or national origin, religion or belief, sexual orientation, disability or age. As"Disability Confident" employers, we guarantee to interview all applicants with disabilities who meet the minimum criteria for the vacancy.

UKRI supports research in areas that include animal health, agriculture and food security, and bioscience for health which includes research on animals, genetic modification and stem cell research. Whilst you may not have direct involvement in this type of research, you should consider whether this conflicts with your personal values or beliefs.

We will conduct a full and comprehensive pre-employment check as an essential part of the recruitment process on all individuals that are offered a position with UKRI. This will include a security check and an extreme organisations affiliation check.

This opportunity is closed to applications.