Inspiring Vice-President for Discovery Biology, Discovery Sciences

AstraZeneca UK

Location: Cambridgeshire

Job Type: Full time


Are you a highly experienced and passionate scientific leader with significant practice in the leadership of drug discovery teams? Do you want to drive innovation together with a diverse and international team of skilled and driven scientists and make a substantial impact in the world of biopharmaceuticals? Join us at AstraZeneca and be part of our mission to improve the lives of patients worldwide!

As the Vice-President for Discovery Biology, part of our Discovery Sciences unit within BioPharmaceuticals R&D, you will play a crucial role in driving innovation and scientific excellence. You will lead a department of over 150 scientists focused on applying Protein and Cell Science to target and drug discovery projects across all AstraZeneca therapy areas. The role will be placed in Cambridge, UK or in Gothenburg, Sweden.

You and your team are primarily responsible for the creation of biological reagents including molecular biology, protein expression and purification and cell models of disease. As well as the development of biochemical and cell based assays to enable hit identification, lead optimisation and mechanism of action studies for a portfolio of over 100 discovery projects.

Thrive in a place where the brightest and most curious minds seamlessly come together in our inclusive environment.

What you will do:
In this role, you will provide strategic leadership to deliver business outcomes, establish key external collaborations, and develop new methodologies to benefit the organization on a global level. You will be responsible for driving innovation and scientific excellence while collaborating with project teams across AstraZeneca and sister departments in Discovery Sciences to generate protein and cellular reagents and assays for various discovery projects. Additionally, you will represent Discovery Sciences on cross-organizational teams and drive innovation through internal development, external collaborations, publications, and conference presentations.

The Vice-President for Discovery Biology will inspire and empower our strong and hardworking department based in Cambridge UK, Gothenburg Sweden and Boston US, with a passion for scientific delivery and innovation. You are also accountable for developing the future strategy of the capability and important work the function is doing.

Essential in this role:

  • PhD/Post-doc in Cell Biology/Biology/Pharmacology field with >15 years' experience in a drug discovery environment.
  • Proven track record of leading large teams in highly matrixed science and technology-based organizations.
  • Experience in project management, change management and/or implementation of process optimization approaches.
  • A proven scientific track record of innovation and delivery within the field of small molecule or oligonucleotide discovery.
  • Broad industrial and academic network with key collaborators and innovation leaders internationally.

We truly believe that everyone contributes with a unique set of competence. Your curiosity and passion for personal development combined with support from colleagues and other leaders, will ensure you maximise your skills, abilities and contribution.

Why AstraZeneca?
Here, you’ll be encouraged to grow and progress in your own way, building connections with the people around you and sharing in our sense of belonging. Your life at AstraZeneca is defined by you and guided by us. Ultimately, it’s more than a job. We know that our work impacts people with serious conditions, many of whom have no other alternatives. That’s what drives us – the potential to impact over one billion patients worldwide.

So, what’s next? If you’re passionate about the possibilities of science to make a difference, welcome to join us!

We look forward to get to know you and invite you to submit your application as soon as possible, but no later than the 8th October, 2023.

For more information about the position please contact Steve Rees, Senior Vice-President, Discovery Sciences at;

Additional information:
AstraZeneca Cambridge:
AstraZeneca Gothenburg:
About BioPharmaceuticals R&D:
This is our Discovery Sciences community:

Date Posted


Closing Date


AstraZeneca embraces diversity and equality of opportunity. We are committed to building an inclusive and diverse team representing all backgrounds, with as wide a range of perspectives as possible, and harnessing industry-leading skills. We believe that the more inclusive we are, the better our work will be. We welcome and consider applications to join our team from all qualified candidates, regardless of their characteristics. We comply with all applicable laws and regulations on non-discrimination in employment (and recruitment), as well as work authorization and employment eligibility verification requirements.

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