Water Supply and Sanitation Specialist – Liberia

World Bank Group

  • Full Time
  • Premium


The 14 GPs are: Agriculture; Education; Energy and Extractives; Environment and Natural Resources; Finance, Competitiveness and Innovation; Governance; Health, Nutrition and Population; Macro, Trade and Investment; Poverty; Social Protection and Labor; Social, Urban, Rural and Resilience; Transport and Digital Development; and Water. The 5 Global Themes are: Climate Change; Fragility, Conflict and Violence; Gender; Knowledge Management; and Infrastructure and Public-Private Partnerships. The Global Practices and the Global Themes, in concert with the WBG’s six client-facing Regional Vice-Presidencies, design solutions that address clients’ most pressing developmental challenges, and ultimately, enable the WBG to achieve its twin goals by 2030: (1) End extreme poverty by decreasing the percentage of people living on less than $1.90 a day to no more than 3%; and (2) Promote shared prosperity by fostering the income growth of the bottom 40% for every country.


The water challenges of the world are tremendous.  For human development, livable cities, food security, and energy security the need for better water resources management is increasing.  Even today, 2.5 billion people lack access to improved sanitation, of which 1 billion people practice open defecation. Poor sanitation, including inadequate wastewater collection and treatment, impacts health, education, the environment, and industries such as tourism. At least 800 million people lack access to safe drinking water. The lack of access to safe water and sanitation results in significant economic losses in many countries. This is further exacerbated by climate change, water pollution, and water scarcity in a fast changing world.

Globally, the World Bank Group finances water supply and sanitation projects, as well as projects related to irrigation and water resource management. Apart from water supply and sanitation (WSS) and water resources management (WRM), the Water GP also seeks to ensure that water issues are effectively addressed in all related sub-sectors, including such as agriculture (ensuring sustainable water availability for irrigation), climate change and disaster risk management, and energy (hydropower). In each sub sector, an integrated approach is adopted which considers investment alongside issues such as governance, institutions and policies. The WSS projects include: rural and urban water and sanitation services, hygiene behavior, improving efficiency of utilities, and provision of services to the poor.  The WRM projects include: integrated water resource management, including groundwater management, dam safety, and flood management.

The Water GP is led by a Senior Global Director and two Directors, supported by nine regional Practice Managers and a Manager for Global Programs.  In addition, the GP Leadership team includes five Global Solutions Groups (GSGs) focusing on: water supply and sanitation; water security/resilience; water resources management; water and agriculture; and water, poverty and the economy, that work across all regional programs.


Within the Africa Region, the hiring unit is responsible for ensuring the translation of the World Bank’s Africa Regional Strategy and the Water Global Practice’s Water Security Strategy into practical results relevant to Liberia, Ethiopia, Sudan, South Sudan, Angola, Cameroon, Gabon, Ghana, Nigeria, and Sierra Leone.  Specifically, the unit supports the definition and achievement of these results through analytical, policy and investment activities.    

The hiring unit has an active portfolio of projects in Liberia under preparation and implementation focusing on water supply, sanitation, irrigation and water resources management.  In all cases, these require intensive engagement with government counterparts and other stakeholders to ensure local ownership, capacity and sustained focus on implementation for results.  As a result, the World Bank is locally recruiting one Water Specialist based in Monrovia, Liberia.


The assignment requires an extensive understanding of the state’s issues, as well as a solid base of experience in working with global, regional and country clients and partners. Under the supervision and guidance of senior water and sanitation specialists, the Water Supply and Sanitation Specialist will work as part of the country and task teams with specific focus on:

1. Strategies, Planning and Policies:

  • Assist in the process of formulation of country sector strategies in the water and sanitation sector. Participate in the reviews of different sector policies, legal and regulatory frameworks for the water and sanitation sector;
  • Assist in identification and preparation of projects;
  • Liaise with and support teams from other GPs of the World Bank (e.g., human development, urban, environment, energy, agriculture) with the aim to ensure that water related issues are addressed consistently across various programs in the Bank;
  • Participate in policy dialogue, together with other development partners, with key stakeholders in the country;

2. Projects implementation:

  • Participate in the design, preparation and implementation of water activities in Liberia which will include incorporating key cross-cutting issues such as gender and climate change;
  • Participate and assist multidisciplinary supervision missions covering all phases of the project cycle;
  • Identify implementation issues related to projects/programs in the sector;
  • Working closely with client institutions to support effective implementation of WB supported programs;
  • Maintaining effective relationships with relevant governmental, non-governmental, donor and other stakeholders;
  • Carry out the planning and organization of workshops on Bank procedures and deliverables; and
  • Encourage clients to use disruptive technology and ICT to speed up project implementation.

3. Institutional and analytical work:

  • Support the design, preparation and implementation of sector strategies, studies, analytical work, policy work, and advisory activities;
  • Staying informed on the status of the water sector and its institutions, as well as relevant donor, private sector and NGO initiatives;
  • Participating in task teams for production of analytical studies and preparation and implementation support to investment and policy-oriented projects;
  • Identifying and sharing with client, relevant expertise and examples within and outside the World Bank; and
  • Identifying and supporting water sector linkages to the Bank’s country strategy and the work of other sectoral teams.

4. Monitoring & Evaluation:

  • Monitor and assess the implementation of sector portfolio;
  • Ensure prompt preparation of quality and consistency related to sector portfolio management, including quality control; and
  • Prepare timely reports on project implementation and progress.

Selection Criteria

The preferred candidate will meet the following criteria:

  • A Master’s level degree, in a field relevant to water supply and sanitation, including civil, sanitary or environmental engineering, water resources/environmental management, economist, or other related fields;
  • A minimum of five years of relevant professional experience in water supply and sanitation; experience in water resources management; experience in hydrological analysis and modeling will be a plus;
  • The candidate’s track record should combine experience on institutional development and management of water and sanitation services, in particular urban WSS, with a thorough knowledge of the water supply and sanitation sector and the water resources sector;
  • Knowledge and experience working with water utilities would be a plus.
  • Experience in coordinating and/or managing multi-disciplinary projects on water or water resources. 
  • Project management experience in international institutions/companies would be a plus
  • Good understanding of policy, institutional, regulatory and management frameworks for water supply and sanitation, and water resources management.
  • Experience with multi-sectoral teams particularly desirable;
  • Good external client relations skills
  • High level of energy, initiative and flexibility in quickly adjusting to changing work program requirements;
  •  Excellent oral and written communication skills in English;
  • Ability to effectively dialogue with and relate to clients and stakeholders;

Required Competencies

In addition to the above, the successful candidate should demonstrate the following:

  • Knowledge and Experience in Development Arena – Understands policy making process; distills operationally relevant recommendations/lessons for clients.
  • Policy Dialogue Skills – Identifies and assesses policy issues and plays an active role in the dialogue with the government and/or other stakeholders.
  • Operational Skills – Extensive experience and knowledge with operational requirements of donors and Government in the context of internationally financed projects and programs would be a plus.
  • Integrative Skills – Working to develop an integrated view across all facets of current sector.
  • Water Policy and Strategy – Significant understanding of water policies and strategies and their role in delivering outcomes to end users/customers.
  • Water Institutions – Strong understanding of water supply and sanitation sector institutions (ministries, regulators, service providers, community organizations) and how they are best organized to deliver services to end users in a sustainable manner.
  • Water Financing – Basic understanding of approaches to water supply and sanitation sector financing of both capital and O&M costs
  • Water Supply and Sanitation Infrastructure and Technologies – Direct experience with water supply and sanitation infrastructure and technologies.
  • Lead and Innovate – Develops innovative solutions.
  • Deliver Results for Clients – Proactively addresses clients’ stated and unstated needs.
  • Collaborate Within Teams and Across Boundaries – Collaborates across boundaries, gives own perspective and willingly receives diverse perspectives.
  • Create, Apply and Share Knowledge – Applies knowledge across GPs and WBG to strengthen solutions for internal and/or external clients.
  • Make Smart Decisions – Interprets a wide range of information and pushes to move forward.

The World Bank Group values diversity and encourages all qualified candidates who are nationals of World Bank Group member countries to apply, regardless of gender, gender identity, religion, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, or disability.  Sub-Saharan African nationals, Caribbean nationals, and female candidates are strongly encouraged to apply.

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