Principal Water Resources Specialist

Asian Development Bank (ADB)

Manila, Philippines 🇵🇭

Job Purpose

Lead identification, development, implementation and administration of loan and technical assistance (TA) projects in agriculture, natural resources and rural development (ANR) sector in countries covered by Central and West Asia Department (CWRD) to contribute to ADB’s developmental directions and the overall goal of reducing poverty. Lead and contribute to the development of policy, strategies and country programs. Lead and monitor the development impact of the portfolio and ensure key issues are considered and proper risk management is applied. Lead and contribute to the development of country water assessment, water sector road maps and strategies and country water action plans. Assess water sector best management technical, institutional and policy options in the regional countries and integrate them into ongoing and pipeline projects. Coordinate with other divisions for operationalizing water-food-energy nexus approach in CWRD operations. Work together with staff at headquarters and at resident missions, provide strategic guidance on sound designs and implementation of water sector projects. Conduct prior review of ANR projects at concept and Report and Recommendation of the President (RRP) stages. Work within a framework of broad policies, principles and goals, applying a high degree of autonomy in selection of work methods.

Expected Outcomes

a. Strategy and planning

  • Lead the development of strategies for the water resources sector for sustained services to people, economy and ecology in assigned developing member countries (DMCs), in consultation with relevant government agencies and Resident Missions.

  • Lead strategic dialogue with riparian countries on transboundary waters guided by the best examples elsewhere.

  • Lead comprehensive water resources sector analysis for the relevant CWRD countries, identify development constraints, innovative technologies and opportunities, and develop country water action plans that contribute to water, food and energy security.

  • Lead the identification of necessary and appropriate water sector interventions, including investments, policy and institutional reforms, and capacity building, for consideration by ADB, in accordance with the relevant sector strategies and road map, based on close collaboration and consultation with the governments, civil societies and other key stakeholders, and reflecting the best technical judgment on the components and activities under the proposed interventions to ensure effective and sustainable development results.

b. Project development and management

  • Lead the development, processing and administration of loan and TA projects in the ANR sector, including water resources development, irrigation and drainage, groundwater, water quality and flood/disaster risk management, responding adequately to the concerns and expectations of the client governments, ADB Management and the Board of Directors, and with adequate attention to due diligence and delivery of development results.

  • Identify investment opportunities in the water resources sector for sustainable economic growth.

  • Liaise and coordinate with development agencies on development of program loans and investment projects.

  • Ensure key technical, economic, financial and crosscutting issues such as climate change and water use trends, gender are incorporated into projects.

  • Ensure technical, procurement, disbursement, and contract administration issues are resolved timely during loan and TA implementation.

c. Knowledge sharing

  • Lead the strengthening and updating of the Division’s collective knowledge on issues and topics related to water resources management and development relevant to CWRD countries.

  • Identify and share relevant lessons, innovations and good practices from own and others, including outside ADB.

  • Participate in sector works around the water resources sector and related issues to keep abreast of latest development and issues.

  • Promote water education, assess the country’s water education need and recommend appropriate solutions leading to water-secured countries in the region.

d. Staff supervision

  • Take the role of mission leader and supervise the work of mission members.

  • Supervise the performance of reporting staff, providing clear direction and regular monitoring and feedback on performance.

  • Ensure the on-going learning and development of reporting staff.

Core Competencies

Application of Technical Knowledge and Skills

  • Provides supervision to others in completing their technical tasks
  • Called upon for advice and guidance based on expertise gained by working in different countries and organizations
  • Contributes advanced knowledge and expertise to different parts of the Department

Client Orientation

  • Proposes effective services and solutions to staff beyond presenting issues and past challenges
  • Assists colleagues adapt to the cultural and business norms of diverse clients and country situations
  • Gains respect for the breadth and depth of expertise demonstrated in effectively managing diverse clients and country situations
  • Called upon to resolve client situations that may impact their long-term ADB relationship

Achieving Results and Problem Solving

  • Resolves situations where client needs are not being met
  • Shares past experiences from different projects, organizations, and countries to help achieve quality results
  • Ensures that thorough analysis includes current and relevant factors from different countries and contexts
  • Sought out for guidance and experience in overcoming the most challenging situations
  • Draws on long-term relationships with stakeholders to help plan for and achieve results

Working Together

  • Addresses team members not contributing to required standards
  • Commits to delivering timely and high quality work to assist in the team’s success
  • Develops and maintains good internal and external peer and senior level relationships
  • Helps teams understand common features to build rapport and overcome challenges

Communication and Knowledge Sharing

  • Provides stakeholders with the level and quality of information required to achieve outcomes
  • Encourages others to seek long-term solutions to address feedback opposed to focusing on immediate concerns or reactions
  • Uses breath of multi-country and multi-client knowledge to equip clients and staff for more effective outcomes
  • Designs and implements project and program knowledge and services

Innovation and Change

  • Consistently seeks more effective and practical ways for the Departmental delivery of services, products, and processes
  • Proposes new ways to improve the quality and relevance of products and services
  • Includes the core benefits and reasons for change when developing comprehensive change roll out plans
  • Influences and persuades decision makers by presenting business cases supporting the proposed changes


Education Requirements

  • Master’s degree, or equivalent, in Engineering and/or other related fields. University degree in Engineering and/or other related fields, combined with specialized experience in similar organization/s, may be considered in lieu of a Master’s degree.

Relevant Experience

  • Suitability to undertake the responsibilities mentioned above at the required level
  • At least 12 years of relevant professional experience in water resources sector. International experience working as a water resources/related field engineer in several countries, with varying cultural values and norms. Experience in Central and West Asian countries is an advantage.
  • Good knowledge of water resources development and management issues, including integrated water resources management, irrigation sector policy reforms, capacity building and institutional strengthening, irrigation/drainage services cost recovery, and/or integrated flood risk management, that are relevant to CWRD countries
  • Strong technical skills and experience in reviewing the engineering designs of water resources (e.g. flood management, water resources development, irrigation and drainage, etc.) and associated rural infrastructure facilities, prepared/proposed by consultants or the government agencies, including cost estimates, implementation arrangements and other relevant technical aspects
  • Ability to synthesize technical, institutional, economic, social, and safeguard outputs into a coherent project design
  • Skills and experience in overseeing implementation of large-scale water resources projects, including procurement and construction supervision
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills in English, including interpersonal skills, necessary to forge consensus among diverse stakeholders over various, and often contentious, development issues

Reporting Relationships

  • Supervisor: Director/Country Director
  • The following staff positions may be supervised by the incumbent:
    • Administrative Staff
    • National Staff
  • We encourage diversity in our workplace and support an inclusive work environment. Women are especially encouraged to apply.