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Trainee (Translational Sciences (Greener Drugs)

Selection procedure reference: EMA/TR/1905 

Deadline for applications: 15 July 2020 23:59 CET 


The European Medicines Agency (EMA) is a decentralised agency of the European Union (EU), located in Amsterdam. It began operating in 1995. It is responsible for the scientific evaluation, supervision and safety monitoring of medicines in the EU.


The 2020 Traineeship programme is now open for applications until 15 July 2020 23:59 CET, with an intake on 1 October 2020.


1. About the traineeship programme

The Agency is looking for motivated, qualified recent graduates or students on an Erasmus+ or other programme or PhD students, who are interested in gaining experience and contribute to the Agency’s work for every patient in Europe. The purpose of a traineeship at the Agency is to perform tasks that are predominantly in the interest of the trainee’s training and principally serve to increase the trainee’s knowledge and to gain relevant experience.


Placement description

We are looking for a trainee to support the Translational Sciences Service.

Specific objectives and projects:

During your traineeship, you will participate and contribute to the greener drug development.

The trainee will take part in the EU-funded IMI-PREMIER project, in which EMA is consortium partner. There are around 1900 active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs) in use, yet the environmental risks of only a small proportion of these have been assessed. PREMIER will deliver a novel assessment system for characterising the environmental risks of APIs. The trainee will identify APIs to be added to an overarching inventory, with their environmental risks. The initial focus will be on centrally approved products. In consultation with consortium partners this could be extended to a limited set of nationally approved products. The trainee will help develop criteria for prioritisation of environmental risk assessment. The traineeship will help deliver:

  • an inventory of APIs on the European market together with important ecotoxicity, physico/chemical and consumption data;
  • a list of approximately 10 APIs selected for Mode of Action-driven testing in the PREMIER project. These APIs will be selected based on environmental exposure and a lack of ecotoxicity data on their specific Mode of Action.
  • a study report with a description of the decision tree(s), the prioritisation results, the criteria used for API selection and the final results;
  • a peer reviewed publication.
Learning outcomes:

We will help you to:

• Increase your knowledge in the area of Environmental Risk Assessment (ERA) of pharmaceuticals
• Gain knowledge of the Agency’s marketing authorisation procedures
• Share your academic knowledge and your perspective to contribute to the Agency’s objectives in the area of supporting greener drug development
• Increase your understanding of EMA communication with other EU institutions/agencies and the network of national competent authorities involved in environmental issues concerning human pharmaceuticals
• Increase your understanding of how EMA participates in and contributes to development and implementation of research methods in the area of ERA
• Successful project work is expected to lead to the trainee’s co-authorship on publication in a peer-reviewed medical journal


Eligibility criteria

To be eligible for consideration for this placement, you are required to:

  1. enjoy full rights as a citizen of a European Union Member State or Iceland, Lichtenstein and Norway;
  2. possess a university degree in pharmacy/pharmacology/biology/toxicology/chemistry (minimum of three years or more) that must have been obtained within the last 12 months (July 2019 -July 2020) or be a university student on an Erasmus + or a similar programme or a PhD student.
  3. a thorough knowledge of English (at least level C1) and good knowledge of other official EU language (at least B2) of the Common European Framework for Languages

For criteria 1 and 2, you will be required to provide proof in the application form and at the interview stage. Failing to present these documents may result in the disqualification from the procedure.

Additional skills

In addition to the eligibility criteria good report writing skills in English and familiarity with Excel are considered an advantage.

Behavioural Competencies

You will demonstrate the following behavioural competencies:

  • Communication skills
  • Interpersonal skills
  • Working with others
  • Adaptability
  • Research and analytical skills
  • Learning and development
Selection timelines

Deadline for applications

15 July 2020 23:59 CET

Assessments (remote)

From 20 July 2020 to 15 August 2020

Decision expected

By 15 August 2020

 Placement start

1 October 2020

Conditions of traineeship

The traineeship is offered for 10 months (1 October 2020 – 31 July 2021) and takes place at the Agency’s premises in Amsterdam. Traineeships are offered for either full-time or part-time (80% or 50%) combined with university studies.

The Agency pays a monthly stipend of €1,360 for a full-time traineeship (reduced accordingly for 80% or 50%) and a travel contribution upon joining and leaving the Agency.

Each trainee will have a mentor at the Agency who will guide the trainee through the programme.

The conditions of employment are stated in the Executive Decision on rules governing the traineeship programme at the EMA available here.



Domenico Scarlattilaan 6 - 1083 HS Amsterdam - The Netherlands

Telephone +31 (0)88 781 6000 - Email recruitment@ema.europa.eu


© European Medicines Agency, 2020. Reproduction is authorised provided the source is acknowledged.