Expertise: Senior Water and Urban Sector Institutional Specialist
Expertise Group: Engineering
Consultant Source: International
TOR Keywords: water security, sanitation, urban resilience
Objective and Purpose of the Assignment
Asian Development Bank’s Water and Urban Development (WUD) Sector Office, through its Southeast and the
Pacific (SEAP) team, is currently supporting the government of the Philippines in improving the urban
water security and resilience in Southeast and the Pacific regions, including the Philippines. It is
currently supporting multiple cities in the Philippines and also preparing to support more to enhance
their urban water security and overall resilience. Two such projects are Loan 3389-PHI: Water Districts
Development Sector Project (“water districts project”) and Loan 3935-PHI: Angat Water Transmission
Improvement Project – Additional Financing (“Angat project”).
Executive Order 22 issued by the President of the Philippines on 27 April 2023 created the Water
Resources Management Office (WRMO) under the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR).
The WRMO was created to assist in the delivery of a holistic approach to the business of water
management, recognizing water as both a service and a resource. The DENR, via the WRMO, exercises
administrative oversight over the National Water Resources Board (NWRB), the Metropolitan Waterworks and
Sewerage System (MWSS), the Local Water Utilities Administration (LWUA), and the Laguna Lake Development
The Philippines has experienced rapid urbanization over the past few decades, and more than half of the
country’s population are living in urban areas, and this trend will continue. Metro Manila, the capital,
is one of the most densely populated urban areas in the world. Other major cities like Cebu, Davao,
Baguio have also experienced substantial growth. Informal settlements often lack basic services, water
supply, proper sanitation, and are prone to disasters. If managed well, urbanization provides economic
opportunities for both local and migrant populations for businesses, industries, and services, which can
lead to job creation and growth. However, there are many urban environmental challenges; thus, balancing
development with environmental sustainability is crucial for the Philippines.
Due to the country’s vulnerability to natural hazards and climate change, resilience now plays a key
role for livability of the Philippine cities. Critical infrastructure that can withstand typhoons,
flood, landslides, and earthquakes are priorities now. Using smart, information and communication
technology, and innovative solutions for financial management and revenue governance, waste management,
water supply and sanitation, urban planning, safety and security, environment, data analysis, disaster
risk reduction and early warning systems will be key areas for smart, livable and resilience cities
across the country.
Purpose of Assignment
The Senior Water and Urban Sector Institutional Specialist (the Consultant) will work with the WUD-SEAP
team, MWSS, and LWUA to improve performance of Angat and water districts projects in the Philippines.
The expert will also work with ADB teams on other water and sanitation projects in the Philippines
primarily, and also provide high level strategic advice to other Southeast Asia water and sanitation
projects (both ongoing and future projects).
Primarily, the Consultant will also work with the WUD-SEAP team to assist in planning, project
management, and delivery of potential new projects and strategies to improve urban water security and
resilience in selected cities of the Philippines. The support may include (i) developing sector
assessments and roadmaps in both water and urban thematic areas; (ii) preparing a rapid assessment of
opportunities and challenges for existing water sector projects, such as the Angat project and the water
districts project, toward enhanced water security in Metro Manila; and (iii) studying the works carried
out before and also assessing the transitional arrangement before establishment of a nationwide, multi-
jurisdiction agency responsible for all aspects of the water cycle the “Department of Water Resources”
(working name). The Consultant will assist in drafting a project concept note and a short or outline
strategy document that will form the basis of a medium- to long-term water security and resilience
roadmap for Metro Manila and Baguio City (to be confirmed), and other potential cities needing support,
consistent with existing and proposed national water security road-mapping. The consultant will look for
areas of support for using smart tools and digitalization to increase efficiency, effectiveness,
governance, and resilience of the sector in three key areas of planning, service delivery, and financial
Scope of Work
To help ADB in its proposed engagement with WRMO, ADB seeks a specialist (the Consultant) who will
perform a rapid high-level assessment of options and approaches to deliver a robust and consensus-based
medium- to long-term water security, sanitation, and resilience roadmap for Metro Manila, Baguio City,
and other potential cities.
The Consultant will also help ADB, MWSS, and LWUA improve performance of ongoing projects including the
Angat and water districts projects; as well as develop water and urban sector assessments in support of
ADB engagement with the Government of Philippines.
The assignment would allow ADB to better define strategic level options to provide upstream
institutional and policy support, particularly given plans to establish a new “Department of Water
This will include consideration of options to strengthen water governance to ensure long-term resilience
via the ongoing water sector reform process and the other necessary interventions, including financial
management, governance, institutional, legal, regulatory and operational. This will build on previous
studies that are readily available for example those developed to increase storage and system
resilience. Those studies procured to established alternative means of building water security will be
valuable to establish supply-side options, to diversify supply, including conjunctive use of
groundwater. Digitalization will be key component of the approach.
Detailed Tasks and/or Expected Output
The Consultant’s work shall include, but not be limited to, the following:
(i) Support WUD-SEAP team in improving implementation performance of MWSS and LWUA loan projects.
(ii) Identify roadblocks to timely implementation and determine available options to address.
(iii) Work closely with ADB to implement improvement measures and actions to assist LWUA and MWSS
enhance performance of the water districts and Angat projects.
(iv) Facilitate meetings with WUD-SEAOP team and/or MWSS and LWUA to work through project performance
issues and work to create consensus on ways forward to improve implementation performance.
(v) Define succinct headline action plans to facilitate agreed approaches.
(vi) Provide high-level strategic advice WUD-SEAP’s other water and sanitation projects in the
The Consultant will prepare short statements on issues hindering project performance and help define and
broker agreement on the measures and approaches necessary to address them. There will be no fixed
timeline for this, with the review and proposed actions by ADB/MWSS/LWUA to be defined as soon as
possible, noting the need for immediate turnaround in implementation performance of the projects.
Water security study, water sector assessment, and urban sector assessment; other strategic advice:
(i) Review existing studies, regulations, agency mandates, laws, etc.
(ii) Review and assess the progress of the Philippine Water Supply and Sanitation Master Plan (2019-
2030) and other existing studies and roadmaps.
(iii) Define existing approaches in managing surface water and groundwater and assess their
(iv) Define existing in managing other (non-traditional) sources (wastewater recycling, rainwater
harvesting, groundwater recharge via drainage/stormwater runoff, and desalination), and assess their
(v) Define existing policies on river basin protection and inter-basin transfers, water demand
management, floodplain preservation, and water catchment optimization.
(vi) Engage in exploratory discussions with key sector stakeholders (WRMO, DENR, MWSS, NWRB, LWUA, etc.)
(vii) Define key issues and likely roadblocks across the range of stakeholders in water security and
urban development and executing the proposed sector transition.
(viii) Define high level key sector reform interventions to create an enabling environment necessary for
water security and the proposed sector transition.
(ix) Define approaches to strengthen urban and water municipal services,
(x) Define areas for smart tools utilization, digitalization and other aspects of AI for enhancing
sector performance, planning, financial management, and service delivery.
(xi) Define for Metro Manila and for Baguio City (and other potential cities) on high-level approaches
to water security linked to strategies for source diversification and redundancy via surface water,
groundwater, and other sources.
(xii) Develop indicative financing options and pipeline projects (as addendums for the reports or a
separate document) where ADB investment and intervention are appropriate.
(xiii) Define constraints and opportunities in urban planning and enforcement, service delivery and
(xiv) Define potential follow-on provide technical and advisory support as necessary for delivering a
water secure future and the proposed sector transition.
(xv) Define data need and analysis on water sector planning (using smart and digital technology).
(xvi) Work closely with ADB and deliver a draft final and final summary report.
(xvii) Facilitate small group meetings with ADB to work through findings and options.
(xviii) Define scope and support application preparation for sector related trust funds and partnership
The reports will be supported by annexes as deemed appropriate to include, but not be limited to, a
compilation of all relevant studies and reports (with assessment of their usefulness), schematic
presentation of demand projections to 2050 with known storage capital projects and supply side
interventions (as far as they are defined), and recommendations on further studies and data gathering.
A range of summary options will be presented which will focus on relevant factors, including, but not
limited to, technical, operational, financial, regulatory, legislation (including environmental
regulations), governance, and institutional.
Other inputs to WUD-SEAP water and sanitation program and project, including reviews and strategic
advice, will be provided as needed.
Minimum Qualification Requirements
The Senior Water and Urban Sector Institutional Specialist is required to have: (i) a bachelor’s degree
in engineering from a recognized university or institute; and (ii) at least 20 years of relevant
professional experience; (iii) held high level government (or) private sector (or) state owned agency
positions leading (or) formulating (or) implementing related sector policies & strategies and project
pipelines in the Philippines; (iv) experience in leading production of policy briefs (or) sector master
plans/roadmaps (or) regulations in the related sector; and (v) experience in Public Private Partnership
projects in the sector. Experience in urban infrastructure projects in Asia and the Pacific financed by
multilateral development banks is required, with focus on water security, sanitation, and urban
resilience. Experience of working in the Philippines is required. Experience of working in other
Southeast Asian countries will be preferred.
Minimum General Experience: 20 Years
Minimum Specific Experience (relevant to assignment): 20 Years