Systematic Reviewer (Tumours Classification)

  • Added Date: Wednesday, 29 June 2022
  • Deadline Date: Thursday, 21 July 2022
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The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), is the cancer agency of the World Health Organization (WHO) and is based in Lyon, France.

The Evidence Synthesis and Classification Branch (ESC) produces theย WHO Classification of Tumours, theย IARC Monographs on the Identification of Carcinogenic Hazards to Humans, and theย IARC Handbooks of Cancer Prevention. For each volume, IARC convenes international, interdisciplinary Working Groups of expert scientists to systematically review the pertinent scientific literature and to develop consensus evaluations and classifications. IARC selects these experts based on their knowledge and experience and the absence of real or apparent conflicting interests.

The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), with several international partners, has established the International Collaboration for Cancer Classification and Research (IC3R) to promote evidence-based practice and standards for cancer classification and research.

Research on cancer aims to help patients at risk through prevention, early detection, diagnosis, and treatment. Most countries have clear pathways for translating clinical trial results into practice through drug approval and clinical guidelines, but not always for the translation of evidence into diagnosis or early detection methodologies.

Challenges related to tumour classification such as its increasingly multidimensional nature, the overwhelming amount of scientific information available in this area, and the translation of research findings into tumour classification and cancer diagnosis are difficult to address by interested parties individually.

IC3R will provide a forum to coordinate evidence generation, synthesis, evaluation, and standard-setting for tumour classification worldwide.


As an initiative of the World Health Organization (WHO) Classification of Tumours (WCT) at IARC, which produces the WHO Classification of Tumours series used by pathologists and cancer researchers worldwide, IC3R is uniquely situated to coordinate an international collaboration to assess tumour classification and cancer research worldwide. The objective of the WCT programme is to improve the classification of tumours for diagnosis, epidemiology and cancer research. WCT is responsible for the preparation and publication of the WHO Classification of Tumours series (WHO Blue Books), which are the international standard of histopathological and genetic classification of human neoplasms.

  • IARC provides a timely, definitive synthesis and evaluation for tumour classification based on expert consensus review of reproducible peer-reviewed published evidence.
  • The WHO Blue Books provide the user with a unique synthesis of histopathological diagnosis with digital and molecular pathology to guide cancer diagnosis. This underpins individual patient treatment, as well as research into all aspects of cancer causation, prevention, therapy, and education.
  • The WHO Blue Books are available in multiple formats to meet the needs of users in low-, middle- and high income countries.


    Under the direct supervision of the Head of Evidence, Synthesis and Classification (ESC) branch, and the

    general guidance of the IARC director, the incumbent has the following duties:

    • Manage the International Collaboration for Cancer Classification and Research, which provides scientific support to the WCT programme.
    • To work in close cooperation with staff within WCT to provide systematic review expertise and evidence evaluation and synthesis for the WCT Group and WHO Blue Books.
    • Assist the WCT team to identify experts for appointment to the WHO Blue Books editorial board, and contributors to the books.
    • Provide systematic review expertise and support to the Agency.
    • Undertake externally funded research in collaboration with other IARC staff and external researchers.



      1. Provide support for systematic reviews and evidence evaluation required to produce the WHO Blue Books. Specific tasks include:
        1. Manage the IC3R programme of research, through interactions with IC3R partners worldwide
        2. Supervise IC3R staff within the ESC branch
        3. Participate in the production and management of the WHO Blue Books, particularly in the assessement of evidence for changes in tumour classification.ย  This will include the design of systematic review protocols, extraction and critical appraisal of data, and presentation ofย  findings at scientific meetings.
        4. Participate in editorial board meetings as an IARC observer, with particular emphasis on evidence assessment.
        5. Assist contributors in developing their content for the WHO Blue Books, including assessment of evidence.
        6. Work with editorial staff within IARC to ensure the accuracy of the WHO Blue Books.
        7. Assist in the production of high quality online content for the WHO Blue Books.
        8. Develop research in tumour classification using systematic review methodology.
        9. Contribute to systematic review support within IARC for existing research groups. This may include:
          1. Advise groups within IARC on research needs relating to systematic reviews, including pre-analytical and analytical methods.ย 
          2. Development of own research, while focussing efforts on the classification of cancer
          3. Train Pathologists and others in systematic review methodology and practice to underpin the use of evidence-based pathology in the classification of cancer
          4. Assist in the training of junior staff, including visiting pathology fellows within WCT/ESC and more widely within IARC.
          5. Attend relevant training(s) to stay abreast of WCT/ESC enhancements and developments
          6. Mobilise research funding from competitive sources through development of grant proposals.
          7. Attend WHO Blue Book Editorial Board meetings and Research Conferences
          8. Perform other related duties as assigned.


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This vacancy is archived.

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