UNSCEAR Secretariat

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The secretariat has been based in Vienna, Austria and is provided by  the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) since 1974. The Secretariat organizes and services the annual sessions of the Scientific Committee and manages the preparation of documents for the Committee's scrutiny.


The Secretary is the principal officer of the UNSCEAR secretariat and head of the office.
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Borislava Batandjieva-Metcalf

Ms. Borislava Batandjieva-Metcalf is the Secretary of UNSCEAR since April 2019 and has over twenty-six years of experience in radiation and nuclear safety. She began her career in 1996 as an inspector with the Bulgarian Nuclear Regulatory Authority. She worked seven years with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) developing international safety standards on radioactive waste, nuclear decommissioning and contaminated site remediation, and providing assistance to IAEA Member States in their application. She was responsible for managing a number of IAEA coordinated research projects on radiological safety assessment for radioactive waste disposal and decommissioning of nuclear facilities, as well as undertaking international peer reviews in these areas. After the IAEA she worked as an independent consultant in radiation safety and licensing of radioactive waste management and new building projects before joining the European Commission as a Scientific Project Officer providing support on site radioactive waste, decommissioning and remediation safety projects in non-EU countries. She was then appointed as a Policy Officer dealing with the EU policy and law implementation by EU Member States and managing studies and projects on spent fuel and radioactive waste management and providing secretariat services to the European nuclear safety regulators Working Group 2 dealing with the safety of spent fuel and radioactive waste. She also represented the European Commission on the IAEA Waste Safety Standards Committee and was a Country Group Chair and member of the General Committee at the 5th meeting of the Joint Convention on the Safety of Spent Fuel Management and on the Safety of Radioactive Waste Management. She holds an MSc. degree in nuclear chemistry and physical chemistry at the Comenius University in Bratislava (Slovak Rep.) and is a member of the Bulgarian Radiation Protection Society.

Former secretaries

Former Secretaries of UNSCEAR were:

  • Mr. Ferid SHANNOUN (2018 - 2019 acting)
  • Mr. Malcolm CRICK (2005 - 2018)
  • Mr. Norman GENTNER (2001 - 2004; 2005 acting)
  • Mr. Burton BENNETT (1988 acting; 1991 - 2000)
  • Mr. Giovanni SILINI (1980 - 1988)
  • Mr. Dan BENINSON (1974 - 1979)
  • Mr. Francesco SELLA (1961 - 1974)
  • Mr. Ray K. APPLEYARD (1956 - 1961)


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Ferid Shannoun

Mr Ferid Shannoun is a medical physicist by training, holding a PhD in Public Health and two master’s degrees from German Universities. Since August 2021, he is the Deputy Secretary and Senior Scientific Officer of the UNSCEAR secretariat, which he joined as Scientific Officer in March 2011. He has 25 years of technical expertise in radiation science and protection, including four years with the World Health Organization, where he worked as Scientist at the Department of Public Health and Environment and nine years as Medical Physics Expert at the Radiation Protection Department of the Ministry of Health in Luxembourg. He is member of the German Medical Physics and Radiation Protection Societies.