Project Manager for Water and Conservation

Limari, Chile 🇨🇱


The Nature Conservancy in Chile seeks a Project Manager for Water and Conservation to develop, manage, and advance the Conservancy’s work with agricultural communities in developing and implementing innovative strategies to improve water security for agriculture and the environment through water market mechanisms enabled by Chilean Water Law. This position would initially focus on the Limarí River Basin, with potential augmentation or amendment of focus within Chile in the future. This position will also be in close contact with local universities or others from the academia, and collaborate and coordinate technical support. This position is grant funded through 2017, with a possibility of extension after this period.

This position will work with Chile- and US- based colleagues to develop and launch an impact investing fund that provides for the ecological health while supporting the agricultural productivity of targeted river basins. This fund will be designed and customized for the targeted basins through robust and collaborative local partnerships, the deployment of the best-available science and tested water management principles, and the creation of innovative financial structures.


The Project Manager for Water and Conservation reports to the Water Specialist of TNC Chile, and is in close coordination with TNC global team. He/she develops, manages, and advances water market projects in targeted geographies. The Project Manager for Water and Conservation will work closely with organizations and entities related to water provision and management, water users, academic and research institutions, local municipalities, environmental agencies and organizations, private sector and NGOs, as well as TNC’s regional and global water security teams, on the development and implementation of science, management and financial tools for environmental flow restoration and water security solutions through water markets. Critical to the role is the ability to cultivate strong relationships within the local agriculture, water management, and conservation communities.

The work will include management and leadership of water market projects, executing water transaction activities in the field, collaboration on the development of institutional strategies for water conservation, and the cultivation of strategic relationships. He/She will also collaborate and coordinate technical support from the local universities. In order to enable the success of the strategy, the Project Manager for Water and Conservation will build productive relationships and partnerships with farmers, water managers, agencies, and other key local stakeholders involved in water management and use; work with agricultural landowners to understand on-farm issues and concerns; work with water managers to understand water management and delivery concerns, foster cross-site learning among conservation partners and the agricultural community; facilitate consensus and partnerships among key stakeholders; source water for deployment by the impact investing fund; and execute transactions on behalf of the fund that align with and create strategic outcomes. The Project Manager for Water and Conservation local knowledge, business acumen, and water management expertise will be critical to the development and operation of this fund, and she/he will play a critical role in cultivating relationships with key stakeholders and advising on strategic decisions during project development, as well as coordinating the long-term implementation of conservation activities.


  • Cultivates relationships with agricultural irrigators and producers in the basin and fosters productive partnerships.
  • Cultivates relationships with water user associations, juntas de vigilancias, asociaciones de canalistas, and other organizing bodies in the basin and fosters productive partnerships.
  • Coordinates with local, regional, and national agencies as needed.
  • Networks with diverse groups, including agricultural landowners, conservation partners, water users, government officials, water managers, and the general public to support The Nature Conservancy’s efforts.
  • Provide on-the-ground research support to US and Santiago based team members
  • Gain cooperation from outside parties to accomplish program goals.
  • May work in variable weather conditions, at remote locations, on difficult and hazardous terrain and under physically demanding circumstances.
  • Financial responsibility may include working within/managing a budget to complete projects, negotiating and contracting with vendors, assisting with budget development, and meeting fundraising targets.
  • Ensures program compliance with internal policies and external requirements.
  • Under minimal supervision, makes independent decisions based on analysis, experience and judgment.
  • Manage multi-disciplinary administrative and professional staff, with responsibility for performance management, training and career development, if needed.


  • BA/BS, law or business degree and 5 years’ experience in natural resource management or equivalent combination of education and experience.
  • Knowledge of agricultural and irrigation practices
  • Knowledge of local and national water law and administration
  • Experience communicating with the public and/or media both in writing and verbally.
  • Experience negotiating complex agreements.
  • Experience with principles of land and water acquisition.
  • Experience using applications such as Microsoft Word, Excel, and Web Browsers. Fluency in Spanish and English


  • Knowledge of land and water management conservation practice, as well as conservation science.
  • Ability to communicate effectively and build productive relationships with farmers, ranchers, and agencies involved in agricultural water conservation. Ideally, a demonstrated track record of such, especially in complex political environments.
  • Knowledge of and experience with water rights and water right transactions in Chile, ideally in the Limarí River Basin.
  • Familiarity with local and national agricultural-support programs, particularly those that are being used to incentivize improvements in irrigation efficiency.
  • Familiarity with local stakeholders in the Limarí Basin and ability to build strong, positive relationships with key agricultural and water stakeholders in the basin.
  • Knowledge of cutting-edge strategies for water-saving measures in agricultural and water delivery practices.
  • Ability to reach agreement with farmers and water managers to collaborate with The Nature Conservancy to save water on farms that can then be used to restore stream flows.
  • Experience with conservation easements and real estate transactions, specifically with regard to agricultural lands.
  • Ability to explain conservation practices to technical and non-technical audiences
  • Knowledge of current trends and practices in conservation, land management, and natural resource preservation.
  • Completing tasks independently with respect to timeline(s).
  • Excellent communication skills via written, spoken and graphical means in English and Spanish.


To apply to position number 44792, submit resume (required) and cover letter separately using the upload buttons. All applications must be submitted in the system prior to 11:59 p.m. Eastern Time on November 9, 2016

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The Nature Conservancy is an Equal Opportunity Employer

Our commitment to diversity includes the recognition that our conservation mission is best advanced by the leadership and contributions of men and women of diverse backgrounds, beliefs and culture. Recruiting and mentoring staff to create an inclusive organization that reflects our global character is a priority and we encourage applicants from all cultures, races, colors, religions, sexes, national or regional origins, ages, disability status, sexual orientation, gender identity, military, protected veteran status or other status protected by law.