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Head, Chemical Demilitarisation Branch




Reporting to the Director, VER and in accordance with the OPCW Core Values of Integrity, Professionalism and Respect for Diversity/Gender Equality, the Head, Chemical Demilitarisation Branch performs the following duties;


Under the direct supervision and guidance of the Director, Verification, and when appropriate in consultations with the Director-General/Deputy Director-General, the post holder has the following responsibilities:


A.       Management and supervision:

  • Delegate individual tasking and organise the different responsibilities within the Branch.
  • Develop and implement the short term, medium term and long term goals/objectives of the Chemical Demilitarisation Branch.
  • Allocate adequate human and financial resources to carry out planned objectives within the Branch.
  • Review and update the inspection plans for CW related facilities.
  • Recommend to the management an annual program and budgetary assumptions for CW related verification activities as well as a medium term programme with budgetary projections.
  • Consult with States Parties on planning and issues (e.g. SP’s obligations, inspection planning, budgetary) in relation to CW verification activities.
  • Review and approve documents created by Substantive Officers.
  • Manage the electronic workflow of approved documents within and outside the Branch.
  • Manage the expertise and KT (knowledge transfer) within the Branch.

B.       Manage, develop and implement  a consistent verification regime and strategy at chemical weapons storage facilities (CWSF), chemical weapons destruction facilities (CWDF), chemical weapons production facilities (CWPF) and destruction/disposal of old and abandoned chemical weapons (OACW) with due consideration to the protection of sensitive/confidential information within and outside the Organisation:

  • Contribute to the inspection plans/cycles based on risk assessment for all CW inspectable facilities.
  • Participate in the review of verification activities and implement corrective measures when appropriate.
  • Coordinate the execution of inspections with the Inspectorate Division.
  • Coordinate CDB input for the preparation of draft facility agreements for chemical weapons related facilities.
  • Negotiate and agree with the States Parties on draft Facility Agreements.
  • Contribute to the draft Agreed Detailed Plan for the Verification of CW Destruction and combined plans for Destruction/Conversion and Verification of CW Production facilities.
  • Oversee the timely submission of CW’s verification related documents for which CDB is responsible to the Executive Council for consideration and adoption.
  • Participate in the technical assessment of inspection activities and approve inspection related documents.
  • Based on information gathered during on-site inspections, manage a flexible approach for the verification regime of old/abandoned chemical weapons produced between 1925 and 1946.
  • Participate in drafting of standard operating procedures (SOPs) related to CWs issues.

C.       Provide to the management, technical support on CW’s related issues:

  • Report to the Director-General, Policy Making Organs (Executive Council, Conference of State Parties) and the Director VER on the results of verification activities related to CWs.
  • Coordinate input of the Branch to the CW database (VIS) in order to support management requirements.
  • Coordinate information to support the creation of the VIR, annual reports or other documents requested by EC's, CSPs and management.
  • Contribute to the training of VER/INS personnel or inspectors on Verification orrelated activities.
  • Represent the division on CW related technical issues to ODG and SPs.
  • Provide expert advice and technical guidance to other branches and divisions within the Technical Secretariat in relation of any issues pertaining to CWSF, CWDF, CWPF and OACW.
  • Contribute to the recruitment or promotion of personnel.
  • Function as Acting Director VER when requested.


D.       Manage activities within the Verification Division for the Division’s contribution towards Investigations of Alleged Use (IAU) and Challenge Inspections (CI) related to chemical weapons:


  • Organise and manage the Division planning during an IAU or CI.
  • Coordinate CDB activities.
  • Manage the contribution of CDB staff during the conduct of IAU and CI training activities and exercises.


Perform other duties, as required.


Education (Qualifications):


An advanced university degree in science (preferably in chemistry or chemical engineering) from an accredited college or university. A first level university degree in combination with qualifying experience (minimum ten years) may be accepted in lieu of the advanced university degree. Equivalent or specialised training in combination with at least 20 years of qualifying experience may be accepted in lieu of a university degree.




  • Experience in the field of chemical demilitarisation or CBRN-related experience including on chemical weapons - minimum of 10 years relevant experience in combination with a Master Degree, 12 years relevant experience with a first level degree, or 20 years without a degree.



  • Experience working at an international level;
  • Knowledge of EOD techniques as well as live agent training;
  • Extensive knowledge in the area of CW destruction and CW munitions design.


Skills and Abilities (key competencies):

  • Analytical and conceptual skills;
  • Problem-solving skills, including the ability to identify and participate in the resolution of issues/problems;
  • Ability to plan and organise, and to work under pressure and subject to urgent deadlines;
  • Excellent communication skills (verbal and written) including ability to prepare reports and conduct presentations, strong negotiating skills and ability to bring others to reach agreement on difficult issues;
  • Tact, discretion and the ability to work harmoniously in a multi-cultural environment;
  • Leadership and management: Strong managerial/leadership skills; demonstrated flexibility in leadership by performing and/or overseeing the analysis of complex human resources, financial and administrative management policy and programme issues; proven record of building and managing teams and creating an enabling environment, including the ability to effectively lead, supervise, mentor, develop and evaluate staff and design training/skills enhancement initiatives to ensure effective transfer of knowledge/skills; good judgement and decision making skills.


Language Requirements:

Fluency in English is essential and a good working knowledge of one of the other official languages (Arabic, Chinese, French, Russian, and Spanish) is desirable.