Senior Technical Officer, Wetlands and Water Resources

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Wetlands International is the only NGO dedicated to the safeguarding and restoration of wetlands. At the heart of our vision is a plan to demonstrate whole landscape recovery in large wetland landscapes across mangroves, peatlands and freshwater wetlands across the world. These are landscapes which are among the top global biodiversity treasures, but which are also sources of much of the world’s land-based climate emissions and where people are most poor and vulnerable.

We have an exciting opportunity for a Senior Technical Officer, Wetlands and Water Resources.

  • Reporting to: Programme Head Wetlands and Water Resources
  • Full-time/Part-time: Fulltime, 36 hours per week
  • Location: Global Office, The Netherlands, other locations can be considered for exceptional candidates
  • Salary: Competitive, dependent on experience

Rivers and Lakes

Wetlands International is committed to help safeguard and restore healthy and resilient freshwater ecosystems to help meet global goals for food, water, energy, peace and climate change. This demands large scale responses to wetland loss and degradation so that society and nature can maintain and recover its resilience in the face of the challenges posed by a changing climate and increasing human pressure. Our work seeks to inspire new thinking and mobilize influential and impactful actors and partnerships in order to spur change from local landscape up to river basin scale. We have a growing portfolio of initiatives around the world in East and West Africa, Latin America, Europe, the Mediterranean and South and South-East Asia.

Purpose of the role

As a senior technical officer you will help us to manage some of our most important projects while offering expertise, guidance and technical know-how. with a particular emphasis on water management and governance. Combining these skills and expertise you will help develop our programmes further, building-on and expanding our work, influence and impact. Focusing in particular on our programmes in West and East Africa the position will also offer the opportunity to support our wider portfolio of initiatives globally.

Responsibilities and tasks


1. Project cycle management

Working in close cooperation with project supervisor(s), network team members and partners, responsible for:

  • Optimal set-up, technical and financial implementation and reporting of projects
  • Effective leadership of project team(s) comprising Global Office and network staff network and external project partners
  • Running collaborative processes with internal and external stakeholders required in projects
  • Strategic communication of project outcomes to internal and external stakeholders
  • Facilitating planning and coordination for implementation of specific programmes/ strategies, including programme and project management
  • Quality of project and programme reports for a range of different donors (public, private sector, philanthropy)

2. Strategy and Innovation

In consultation with the Programme Head/ Stream Lead, and staff in other network offices:

  • Monitoring and identifying relevant (environmental, social) issues and trends and translating these into ideas and opportunities for the organization and its running projects
  • Providing strategic and technical advice and input into other programme areas as requested
  • Communicating and advocating on Wetlands International’s work and achievements
  • Developing knowledge and tools that strengthen the track record and profile of Wetlands International in our work under the Rivers and Lakes Stream.

3. Resource development

In line with Wetlands International Strategic Intent and in consultation with Programme Head / Stream Lead, and staff in other network offices:

  • Identifies opportunities for resources and project development and takes a leading role in project proposal teams
  • Develops appealing project and programme concepts
  • Takes responsibility for donor stewardship, including pro-active and timely communication with the donor and sharing of successes and lessons

4. Networking & partnership development

In line with Wetlands International Strategic Intent and in consultation with Programme Head / Stream Lead, and staff in other network offices:

  • Proactively seeks and advises on new opportunities for strategic partnerships
  • Establishes and manages relevant internal and external contacts with key internal and external stakeholders of the organisation.
  • Represents Wetlands International in relevant fora and events

Carry out other tasks according to the organisational needs as agreed with the Programme Head in individual workplans.

Working relations

INSIDE Wetlands International: Programme Heads, project managers, communications, resource development and finance teams in our network including the global office.

OUTSIDE Wetlands International: Partner organizations, government agencies, international organizations, companies, wetland experts, donors, NGOs, and the extended network of Wetlands International.


You will have strong project management and programme development skills married with enthusiasm for and experience in safeguarding and restoring freshwater wetlands and expertise in water management.

You will be passionate about making healthy wetlands and natural water systems integral and indispensable parts of resilient landscapes for society and nature. This will be underpinned by a clear vision and understanding of how to do this, working together with civil society, government and private sector. Practical understanding of integrated water resource management and related approaches and mechanisms such as water sharing, governance, environmental flows to help ensure safeguarding and restoration of wetlands and their communities is key.

You will have proven skills and experience in the management of large and complex projects and partnerships to deliver impact and change on the ground while creating the conditions to catalyze change at scale. You will have experience of working across different cultural environments in East and West Africa and have the language skills to enable this, with a particular strength in French and English.

You will believe in the importance of partnerships and network organizations to deliver meaningful and sustainable impact on the ground and have experience of this. Managing relationships sensitively and knowing how to support, coach and manoeuvre in these often complex working environments will be part and parcel of how you work. You will help us develop and deliver large and ambitious programmes and initiatives that place wetland and water management at the centre of socio-economic development and climate change response. You will be an integral part of the network’s inter-office Rivers and Lakes team and be able to couple strategy, technical skills and programme development experience with a strong teamwork ethic.

Education and experience


  • MSc degree (or higher) in relevant scientific discipline (e.g. biology, geography, environmental science/management, water management)
  • At least 10 years relevant working experience in an international context
  • Working experience in the NGO or Corporate sector
  • Significant programme development and project management experience
  • Personal network of international contacts
  • Authority in the field of wetland management and development
  • Experience of working with communities in diverse cultural settings
  • An appreciation of the role of international NGOs in creating change and delivering solutions
  • Active interest in current environment and development matters
  • Ability to travel and work independently
  • Well-developed computer skills
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills in spoken and written English and French is needed for this post; additional language skills (especially Spanish, Dutch) are a plus.
  • Commitment to Wetlands International’s mission, values and ways of working.
  • Willingness and ability to travel regularly.

Core competencies

  • Analytical Thinking – Adopts a systems perspective, assessing and balancing vast amounts of diverse information on the varied systems and subsystems that comprise and affect the working environment.
  • Entrepreneurship – Transforms innovative ideas into actions that achieve business or people results.
  • Accuracy – Consistently delivers work of a high standard of quality, precision and according to standards, procedures, rules, regulations and expectations.
  • Planning and Organizing – Adapts to large, complex and/or frequent changes. Ability to get things done under pressure (result oriented), while maintaining oversight and planning.
  • Organizational and Environmental Awareness – Demonstrates broad understanding of social and economic context within which the organization operates.
  • Teamwork – Facilitates collaboration across the organization and with other organizations to achieve a common goal.

How to apply

To apply for this vacancy, please send us a resume and an application letter indicating your motivation to Jozefa van der Veen, HR Officer [email protected]. Please mark in the subject: “Application – Senior Technical Officer Rivers and Lakes. Questions about the vacancy and/or procedure can also be sent to this email address.

Deadline for the application is Sunday 21 November 2021. Interviews will take place in the week commencing 28 November 2021.

“Due to the high amount of applications, we can only contact short listed candidates.”

Senior Technical Officer, Wetlands and Water Resources