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Gothenburg, Västra Götaland County, Sweden
Job reference: R-034067
Posted date: Aug. 17, 2018

Would you like to bring your scientific excellence to Drug Safety and Metabolism at AstraZeneca and become a key player in the discovery of safe innovative medicines? Would you like to apply your expertise in a company that is following the science and turns ideas into life changing medicines? Then you might be the one we are looking for!

AstraZeneca are looking to recruit a Director, Safety Science and Discovery to strengthen the Respiratory, Inflammation and Autoimmunity (RIA) Safety department. The position is based at AstraZeneca’s vibrant R&D site in Gothenburg, Sweden.

One of the major challenges in the discovery of innovative medicines is to ensure they are safe enough to provide novel treatments for patients. Within the RIA Safety department, which is part our global industry-leading Drug Safety and Metabolism (DSM) function, the Safety Science and Discovery team develops and applies innovative scientific strategies to drive the design and selection of safer medicines for the treatment of Respiratory, Inflammation and Autoimmunity diseases. As true Drug Hunting partners to the RIA Innovative Medicines unit, the team brings safety expertise as part of the selection of novel drug targets, design of therapeutic concepts, identification and optimization of new chemical series as well as a range of other therapeutic modalities, and selection of novel candidate drugs. We develop and apply cutting edge molecular, cellular and in vivo technologies and push the boundaries of predictive safety science and investigative toxicology with our mission in mind:

SCIENCE, PASSION, EXPERTISE – Fundamental to selection and delivery of safe and efficacious medicines to patients.

In Drug Safety and Metabolism, we place a strong emphasis on talent development. You will be able to develop your leadership by working together with leaders in pharmacology, investigative toxicology, drug discovery and development, cell biology and predictive safety science.

Main Duties and Responsibilities

  • Be an inspiring leader and line manager for a team of ~10 highly skilled and driven scientists/specialists, with a strong focus on developing talent, building capabilities, and driving high performance.
  • Be a strategic and scientific leader in the predictive safety/toxicology and drug discovery arena and as such contribute to the internal global Innovative Safety strategy as well as influencing the scientific field externally.
  • Develop and implement an industry-leading Respiratory / Lung safety strategy.
  • Be a close partner to the drug discovery community in the RIA Innovative Medicines unit.
  • Secure delivery of “Right Safety” for our discovery project portfolio priorities for Respiratory, Inflammation and Autoimmunity disease indications (from target/concept validation to candidate delivery) and provide insight and judgement to enable the successful delivery of “Right Safety” to the global AstraZeneca discovery project portfolio across indications.
  • Oversight and guidance of the design and successful delivery of project-specific strategies to predict, assess and mitigate target- and modality-related safety risks.
  • Promoting RIA Safety science through publications, building collaborative networks across AstraZeneca science units and with relevant external experts in order to enhance RIA Safety Science and Discovery capabilities and reputation.
  • Membership of the RIA Safety Leadership team to drive performance, develop talent and set strategic direction across the department.
  • Assuring compliance with relevant regulations and standards.


  • Excellent scientist with a PhD (or equivalent) in cell biology, toxicology, pharmacology, systems biology (or related field) and a strong scientific track record.
  • Significant leadership experience in drug discovery and/or safety science from the pharmaceutical industry or biotech sector.
  • A track record in the leadership, management and development of individuals and teams.
  • Ideally, experience with Respiratory science.
  • Strong communication skills, and effective influencing skills in a complex matrix organization.
  • A constructive and collaborative personality that contributes to a positive, open, trusting working culture. 
  • Experience with (or interest in) working with teams across geographies including awareness of subtle cultural differences.

If you are interested, apply now!

For more information please contact Jorrit Hornberg, Senior Director, RIA Safety at jorrit.hornberg(at)

Welcome with your application no later than September 30th, 2018.

AstraZeneca is a global, science-driven biopharmaceutical company. We turn ideas into life changing medicines. Working here means being entrepreneurial, thinking big and working together to make the impossible a reality. Here, we see the impact of our collective ideas and expertise, and the power of science to deliver them. AstraZeneca is proud to provide a unique workplace culture that inspires innovation and cross-boundary collaboration. Within this environment employees are empowered to express diverse perspectives, and are made to feel valued, energized and rewarded for their ideas and creativity.

AstraZeneca is an equal opportunity employer. AstraZeneca will consider all qualified applicants for employment without discrimination on grounds of disability, sex or sexual orientation, pregnancy or maternity leave status, race or national or ethnic origin, age, religion or belief, gender identity or re-assignment, marital or civil partnership status, protected veteran status (if applicable) or any other characteristic protected by law.

Director, Safety Science and Discovery, RIA Safety

AstraZeneca in Sweden

At AstraZeneca in Sweden we'll make the most of your skills and passion by actively supporting you. To do this, we've created a great working environment that's full of world-class talent, and opportunities for collaboration and innovation. If you're inspired by the possibilities of science to make a difference and ready to discover what you can do - join us.

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