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Vacancy: Scientific secretary Environmental Epidemiology Health Council

This vacancy has been nominated by the Health Council of the Netherlands.  width=

Location: The Hague
Contract duration: 1 year, secondment is also possible
Hours per week: 32 – 36
Monthly salary: €3.279 – €5.710
Salary level: scale 11, scale 12
Level: Master/doctoral
Field: Medical/Care, Research/Science
Respond before 11 October 2021
Vacancy number VWS21-217(GR)
Employment contract: Employment contract for a fixed period with a view to an indefinite period

Job title
The Health Council of the Netherlands is an independent advisory body that provides scientific advice to government and parliament. The opinions are prepared by committees active in various fields. The secretariat supports these committees throughout the advisory process. As scientific secretary you will write the advice and the underlying discussion documents, do literature research and hold interviews with experts from the field. During committee meetings the documents are discussed and you take care of the reporting. As secretary, you are responsible for the process that leads to an opinion, such as meeting deadlines. Together with an editor, you ensure that the final advice, the summary and the press release follow a convincing line of reasoning and are accessible to a wide audience. In addition, you are responsible, under the Health Council’s management, for the recruitment of committee members and maintain contacts with the health council’s scientific network and clients. You work in a small team of colleagues.

For this specific vacancy we are looking for a secretary environmental epidemiology, who will work on advising on the interpretation of epidemiological data on exposure to chemicals and environmental risk factors. Your regular role is secretary of the Committee on Health and Occupational Exposure to Substances (GBBS), which advises on occupational health standards, and of its two subcommittees on the classification of carcinogens or substances harmful to reproduction. You will also be employed as a secretary on Health Council committees that advise on various subjects in the field of the environment and public health, such as electromagnetic fields or hearing damage caused by exposure to loud music.

Job requirements

  • You have a master’s degree or PhD in environmental epidemiology.
  • You have an affinity or experience with research on chemical exposure or environmental risk factors or you are willing to train yourself in this area.
  • You are able to interpret and present scientific information in such a way that it can be used for policy development, for example by using a clear line of argumentation and separating main issues from secondary ones.
  • You are flexible, can switch quickly and keep an overview so that you can handle multiple tasks or advisory processes in parallel.
  • You have excellent writing skills in English and Dutch and generally have excellent communication skills.


  • Analyze
  • Result orientation
  • Planning and organizing
  • Flexibility
  • Collaborate

About the Health Council of the Netherlands
What is healthy food? Who should receive a particular vaccine? How dangerous are certain chemicals? Every year the Health Council of the Netherlands issues about 25 advisory reports to the government, the House of Representatives and/or the Senate, which contain the latest scientific insights on (public) health and health care. This ranges from areas such as care, prevention and nutrition to healthy living and healthy working conditions. The Health Council of the Netherlands is supported by the secretariat, which is divided into a scientific staff, a business operations department and a communication department. The secretariat employs about 50 people.

The Health Council Secretariat strives to be an inclusive and diverse organisation, with proportionate involvement of people from different gender and ethnic or cultural backgrounds.

More information on the Health Council of the Netherlands and its secretariat can be found at

Other terms of employment
In addition to your salary, you will receive an Individual Choices Budget (IKB). The IKB consists of money (16,37% of your gross annual salary) and time. With IKB you can make the choices that suit you and you can compile part of your terms of employment yourself. For example, you can choose to have part of your monthly income paid out when you want. You can also convert this budget into leave or spend it on tax-friendly purposes. Central government attaches great importance to personal growth and career development and offers numerous opportunities for this. The secondary employment conditions include various study facilities, company fitness, full reimbursement of your public transport commuting expenses and partially paid parental leave.


  • Please address your application stating the vacancy number: VWS21-217(GR) to: Gwen Soete, Head of the Scientific Staff.
  • If you have been designated as a mandatory VWNW candidate, please enclose a copy of this designation letter with your application.
  • A secondment construction for this position is possible.
  • The Health Council works hybrid, partly in its office in The Hague and partly at home.
  • Because you will be working with confidential information in this position, we may ask for references during the application process and you will need a Certificate of Good Conduct (VOG) to take up employment.
  • The first and second selection interviews will be held on 14 and 26 October.

For more information about this vacancy:
Daisy Boers, scientific secretary
06 211 32 062

For more information about the application process:
VWS Talent Center

Go to Here to the application form.

Date of placement: October 1, 2021

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