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Risk Assessor

     Many areas in which the federal government issues regulations involve questions of risk. These include the safety of our food supply, the level of pollutants in the air or water, and the occupational exposure to chemicals of workers on the job. In developing regulations, agencies often must analyze risks in order to better understand the benefits of specific regulatory options and to help develop appropriate regulatory strategies. Questions of risk are therefore central to many decisions in government regulatory policy.

     The Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA), an office within the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) is seeking an experienced risk assessor to help in its oversight of agency regulatory policy. OIRA resides in the Executive Office of the President and is responsible for reviewing regulations from agencies of the executive branch under Executive Order 12866. OIRA staff assess the regulations, work with the agencies to improve them, and advise Administration decisionmakers. An important part of this function is an assessment of the benefits and costs of agency regulatory actions. The benefits of government regulation are often the reduction of health risks to individuals so that assessment of risks play an important role in regulations developed by the Environmental Protection Agency, the Food and Drug Administration, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, as well as many other agencies.

     The expert in risk assessment will work with OIRA and agency staff in determining the extent of risk in areas in which agencies wish to regulate as well as reductions in risk likely to occur as a result of regulatory action. This will involve evaluating agency risk assessments, working with agency officials to improve specific risk assessments, and discussing risk related policy issues with high level agency officials. The risk assessor will also advise senior policy officials within OMB and the White House on regulatory and information policy issues and participate in the development and execution of Presidential initiatives. Finally, the risk assessor will be involved in developing government wide policy on best practices in risk assessment that can be used to improve risk assessments done by all agencies.

     Candidates should have a strong background in biology, exposure, and toxicology as well as practical experience in the risk assessment process. Education or experience in public policy is desirable. Graduate training (M.S. or Ph.D.) and work experience is expected. Working in OIRA also requires excellent written and oral communication skills, and the ability to provide well-reasoned and accurate analysis in a high-pressure environment.

     Interested candidates should contact Stuart Shapiro at (202) 395-7316 or email him at