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Dupont | Research Associate, Integrated Product Development and Characterization in Union City, TN
Research Associate, Integrated Product Development and Characterization

Research Associate, Integrated Product Development and Characterization
Union City, TN

Job Description

Job Purpose

The Research Associate will support day to day field research operations for all Integrated Product Characterization and Development-Maize Component Characterization (IPCD-MCC) research projects at the Union City, TN DuPont Pioneer research center.  The Research Associate will be expected to execute field experiments at multiple locations, and collect and manage data for the characterization and advancement of transgenic traits for maize and soybean, with a focus on insect control traits.  The IPCD-MCC research group works cross-functionally in the development and commercialization of agronomic traits, insect control and herbicide tolerance traits, and biologicals and seed treatments. 

Duties/Responsibilities

  • The Research Associate will support the IPCD-MCC Research Scientist in Union City,TN  to establish and execute field trials across multiple locations.   The RA will execute day to day activities to insure high quality data collection from field trials designed to characterize the efficacy and agronomics of lead pipeline or licensed pre-commercial transgenic insect control traits (key targets Lepidoptera and Coleoptera pests), as well as transgenic events for agronomic traits. Other project areas include efficacy, crop safety and yield impact of novel herbicide, seed treatment and biologicals systems.  The RA will serve as a Regulatory Key Contact, leading compliance activities for transgenic research at the Union City Research Center.     
  • Conduct experiments to completion, according to specific protocols. This includes, but is not limited to, the knowledge of general agronomic practices, herbicide application and evaluation procedures, crop scouting, advanced phenotyping procedures and data management.  Use Pioneer proprietary software for initiation, mapping, tracking and analysis of experiments and communicate data and information as appropriate to all managers of IPCD experiments.
  • Provides support for successful product development at the Union City Research Center, working as a member of the RCOF team.  The RA will contribute to Research Center activities and  communicate with other team members to insure the success of all research programs at that center.
  • Responsible for continuously updating his/her own scientific/agronomic background in research areas relevant to transgenic trait characterization and development.
  • Supervise temp employees, including interns, implementing and monitoring safe working practices.
  • Job Qualifications

    Problem Solving

  • This RA will often be faced with the need to prioritize field research activities based on available resources, weather windows and plant/insect development stages.
  • Have the ability to modify plans or find alternative solutions on very short notice when unforeseen circumstances arise, often from remote locations.
  • Decision Making 

  • The Research Associate will have to decide on how best to utilize technical support to efficiently collect discriminating data on traits of interest in ag trait, insect trait, herbicide trait, seed treatment/biologicals studies, as well as in departmental breeding studies.
  •  Decisions regarding training of support staff are critical towards maintenance of quality control in data collection practices. 
  • Knowledge, Skills, Competencies and Experience

  • B.S. in agriculture with 2-5 years of field efficacy and/or yield trial experience.  Candidates with an M.S. in agriculture with 1-3 years of field experience will also be considered.  Understanding of small plot research techniques leading to high quality data is essential.  Direct experience with specialized small-plot field research equipment is preferred.
  • Experience developing, executing, and reporting on field efficacy and agronomic trials designed to characterize performance of transgenic insect control products.  Hands-on experience in managing regulated transgenic field trials is preferred.  
  • Demonstrated excellent communication and interpersonal skills with the ability to work with multidisciplinary teams in a timeline-driven environment.
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills, good organizational skills and attention to detail.
  • Strong computer skills (MS Word, MS Excel, MS PowerPoint, MS Access and MS Outlook). 
  • Supervisory and leadership skills to effectively support complex research center operations. 
  • Ability to obtain a Certified Pesticide Applicator License.


  • DuPont Pioneer (www.pioneer.com/careers) headquartered in Des Moines, Iowa, is the world’s leading developer and supplier of advanced plant genetics, providing high-quality seeds to farmers in more than 90 countries. DuPont Pioneer provides agronomic support and services to help increase farmer productivity and profitability and strives to develop sustainable agricultural systems for people everywhere. Science with Service Delivering Success™.

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