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Research Supervisor (Molecular Breeding) at IITA

The International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA) is a not-for-profit institution that generates agricultural innovations to meet Africa’s most pressing challenges of hunger, malnutrition, poverty, and natural resource degradation. Working with various partners across sub-Saharan Africa, we improve livelihoods, enhance food and nutrition security, increase employment, and preserve natural resource integrity. IITA is a member of CGIAR, a global agriculture research partnership for a food secure future. 
We are recruiting to fill the position below:

Key Responsibilities:
Successful candidate will among other things perform the following duties: 

  • Support scientists of the AfricaYam project in genotyping, phenotyping, in vitro establishment and multiplication of true to type, disease and pest-free yam to ensure project goals are accomplished using high quality data and planting material;
  • Optimize and implement standardized protocols for leaf tissue collection, DNA extraction, and low-throughput genotyping for quality control, identification, and fidelity testing of yam clones;
  • Prepare leaf or DNA samples for NGS-based high-throughput genotyping at external service providers or collaborators and conduct analysis of DNA marker data and prepare reports for AfricaYam scientists;
  • Carry out field, screen house, or laboratory activities to evaluate mapping populations and association panels for agronomic, disease and pest resistance, and tuber quality traits;
  • Collect, collate and summarize field, screen house and lab data using electronic devices and data management software to prepare reports, monitor multiplication rates, and maintain accurate inventories;
  • Assist in developing user-friendly SNP DNA marker assays for routine genotyping applications;
  • Co-ordinate with Germplasm Health Unit and Genetic Resource Center staff to establish and maintain virus-free stocks of yam for back-up, multiplication, and distribution of genetic populations;
  • Perform any other duty assigned by the Supervisor


  • B.Sc/HND in Biotechnology, Plant Breeding, Genetics, Molecular Biology or related discipline with at least two (2) years’ relevant experience performing similar role.

The ideal candidate must: 

  • Have applied knowledge in molecular genetics, plant propagation, crop breeding and genetics, plant pathology, post-harvest storage and screen house nursery / field trial management.
  • Excellent knowledge of data management and statistical analysis software programs.
  • Good knowledge of software used to analyze DNA marker data.
  • Proactive, innovative and creative attitudes and ability to learn new skills quickly.
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills in English are required

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