Country Liaison Officer

Sanitation and Water for All (SWA)

Lisbon, , PT



The Secretariat of Sanitation and Water for All (SWA) is currently recruiting a Country Liaison Officer. The position will be hosted by LIS-Water, Lisbon International Centre for Water, in Lisbon, Portugal. 

Title: Country Liaison Officer | Location of Assignment: The Country Liaison Officer will be hosted at LIS-Water’s headquarters, located at the LNEC campus, Avenida do Brasil, 101, 1700-066 Lisbon, Portugal.| Languages required: Fluency in English is required, and knowledge of Spanish, Portuguese and/or French is a strong asset | Duration of Contract: The position is initially offered as a 1 year contract, with possibility of renewal | Start date: As soon as possible, in consultation | Section & unit: Sanitation and Water for All Secretariat (the position is hosted by LIS-Water, Lisbon International Centre for Water, in Portugal) | Consultant: Reporting to Muyatwa Sitali, Program Specialist – Country Engagement, Sanitation and Water for All Partnership.


About LIS-Water

Hosted by LNEC (National Laboratory of Civil Engineering), LIS-Water, Lisbon International Centre for Water, is a non-profit association. Its mission is to contribute to improving public policies, regulation and management of water services (water supply, wastewater and storm water), as well as associated water resources. Its vision is to drive change in the world through better water governance, within the framework of sustainable development. LIS-Water promotes a three-pillar approach: an appropriate public policy for improving water services; an effective and efficient regulation to implement public policy; and an effective and efficient service management for materialising public policy on the ground. LIS-Water is supported by more than 125 organisations, whose profiles cover the main water sector’s stakeholders and geographically the five continents. LNEC is a founder member of LIS-Water, and sits on the board of directors.

About SWA

Hosted by UNICEF, Sanitation and Water for All, (SWA) is a global partnership of governments, external support agencies, civil society organizations, research & learning bodies, and the private sector, united in their commitment to delivering universal access to water, sanitation and hygiene, in line with the Sustainable Development Goals. Established in 2010, the SWA partnership works towards this goal by strengthening collaboration, improving performance, ensuring mutual accountability and seeking increased political support and financing for WASH. The partnership is governed by a Steering Committee, elected by its members. UNICEF is a founder member of SWA, sits on SWA’s Steering Committee, and has hosted SWA’s Secretariat since 2010. Over the years, Sanitation and Water for All (SWA) has grown to over 200 partners, including 70 member States.


Applications are invited from suitably qualified, experienced, innovative, result-oriented and self-driven professionals.

The position reinforces the existing SWA Secretariat staff with the purpose of strengthening government-led systems and national processes; developing and using a strong evidence base for the WASH Sector to support good decision-making; and increasing political prioritization for sanitation, hygiene and water.


Under the supervision of the SWA Program Specialist – Country Engagement, the post holder will:

  • Contribute to managing data for the updated accountability mechanism; 
  • Document and disseminate experiences from partners and countries related to the implementation of the SWA Framework; 
  • Manage the SWA tools portal and conduct preliminary quality control on the submission of new tools; 
  • Ensure continuous support and stakeholder coordination; 
  • Collect relevant data on the team’s activities. 

Overall, the Country Liaison Officer will:

  • Support the management of the database of commitments derived from the implementation of the Mutual Accountability Mechanism; 
  • Provide back end support for the SWA tools portal;
  • Support engagement with new partner organizations and strengthening the current SWA focal points in country;
  • Ensure that Country engagement and related activities are well-documented and communicated; 
  • Support the development, management and use of an evidence base for the WASH Sector to support good policy decision-making at country and regional levels.


The Country Liaison Officer will be accountable to the SWA Programme Specialist – Country Engagement for all substantive and functional aspects and delivery of tasks and will be under the supervision of the LIS-Water, for technical tutoring on public policy, regulation and management of WASH services, as well as daily management and administrative operations. The SWA Country Liaison Officer will maintain independence and neutrality towards his/her host organization.

The post will conduct the following activities:

1. Support the management of the database of commitments derived from the implementation of the Mutual Accountability Mechanism: 

  • Manage the database of commitments including by mapping data from countries and partners to regions and relevant components of the SWA framework;
  • Generate preliminary reports and analysis as needed;
  • Receive and update the database with periodic reports and relevant information from countries and other partners when available.


2. Provide back end support for the SWA tools portal:

  • Support partners in the use of the SWA Tools Portal;
  • Be the in-house expert on how the tools portal functions and how the services partners can gain from using it;
  • Provide back-end support for the tools portal;
  • Monitor the use of the tools portal and provide advice on the accessibility of the tools;
  • Prepare analytic reports on the experience of users;
  • Conduct preliminary checks of newly submitted tools and prepare a quarterly update on newly uploaded tools;
  • Consult with the SWA Programme Specialist -Country Engagement on newly submitted tools and make sure they are uploaded;
  • Manage user reviews and respond to user queries.

3. Support engagement with new partner organizations and strengthening the current SWA focal points in country:

a. Maintain a robust system to provide information and welcome new government partners: 

  • Share welcome package adapted to new government partners; 
  • Support Regional Coordinators and Technical Advisers to organise dedicated induction sessions for new government partners;
  • Convene regular induction webinars for new partners to discuss opportunities for active engagement in different working groups and activities of the partnership;
  • Connect new partners to peer partners who can offer insights. 

b. Support action to strengthen Regional Advisers and national focal points so that they can carry out their roles and responsibilities at various levels:

  • Maintain updated record of Focal Points contacts; 
  • Help identify in country focal points for the research and learning and private country constituencies and provide this information to Regional Advisers;
  • Ensure that focal points’ terms of reference are shared for various constituencies including CSOs, research and learning and the private sector and support the process of identifying and orienting focal points in countries that have joined SWA; 
  • Undertake mapping and support the search for focal points in countries and recommend potential organizations and focal points in conjunction with the Regional Advisers.

4. Ensure that Country engagement and related activities are well-documented and communicated: 

Support documentation of country engagement and ensure identified good practices and experiences are documented and shared widely at country, regional and global levels:

  • Identify and disseminate partner experiences on the implementation of the SWA framework;
  • Categorize and properly tag partner experiences for ease access, use and reference in future;
  • Contribute to preparation of stories and key messages for media;
  • Maintain an up-to-date database for knowledge management and learning; 
  • Gather preliminary data and analysis on country engagement for SWA reporting including through the SWA Annual Reports and the six-monthly reports to the Steering Committee;
  • Support preparations for in-country, multi-stakeholder dialogues and ensure that participants fully benefit from the meetings.

5. Support the development, management and use of an evidence base for the WASH Sector to support good policy decision-making at country and regional levels: 

  • Conduct preliminary research and data gathering on policy issues requiring SWA attention; 
  • Provide preliminary data for briefings on country engagement designed to promote and facilitate the use of the SWA framework; 
  • Support and document work of relevant work groups and action that promote dialogue amongst the relevant stakeholders;
  • Proactively prepare information for various audiences on SWA activities such as webinars and dialogues focusing on the SWA framework and the mutual accountability mechanism; 
  • Track media reports and other platforms for changes at country level affecting key political institutions and decision makers related to WASH; perform any other related tasks as assigned.

Expected results:

  • Effective and efficient support is provided to SWA partners and to stakeholders at country level to implement the SWA Framework and participate actively in SWA activities.


Qualifications of the Successful Candidate


  • Advanced degree in international development, public health, sustainable development, governance, business, economics, water or sanitation engineering, or other relevant field;


  • Five years of experience, with a minimum of two (2) years of relevant experience in international development;
  • Experience in organizing multi-stakeholder meetings and consultations; 
  • Strong conceptual and research/analytical skills with the ability to rapidly analyze and integrate diverse information from varied sources into conclusions and recommendations;
  • Experience of working with in the WASH field, and/or experience of organizing and participating in country processes such as regional sanitation conferences desirable;
  • Strong client focus with flexible and creative approach to problem solving; 
  • Track record of consulting on complex tasks which require technical knowledge and experience and submitting high quality and timely outputs; 
  • Proven ability in delivering on self-managed work.


  • Fluency in English is required (writing, speaking, and comprehension). Knowledge of Spanish, Portuguese and/or French is a strong asset.

Competencies of Successful Candidate

  •  Service minded and highly responsive; 
  • Enthusiastic, pro-active and flexible; 
  • Strong interpersonal skills and effective communicator with good writing skills; 
  • Curious, highly self-motivating and ability to work independently with limited guidance; 
  • Eager to learn and keen interest in web-based research; 
  •  Familiar with social media and ability to write short web articles and blogs.


One year contract will initially be offered, hosted by LIS-Water, with a remuneration depending on qualifications and experience, with a maximum of € 2250. The work is in principle physically based, but flexibility trough teleworking will be considered if appropriate, under agreement of both parts. The post will require a working permit for Portugal (granted automatically for EU citizens).


LIS-Water and SWA are committed to diversity and inclusion and encourage all candidates, irrespective of gender, nationality, religious and ethnic backgrounds, including persons living with disabilities, to apply.

Interested individuals are encouraged to submit applications explaining their interest and competencies matching the job description outlined above. Updated Curriculum Vitae (max 5 pages) must be attached, detailing: name, date of birth, nationality, education, language skills, other skills, current and previous positions, time of professional activity, main expertise, professional experience, international experience, participation in multi-stakeholder platforms and/or partnerships, and publications.

Applications must be submitted by 15 July 2020 to the email address: [email protected], and with a copy to [email protected]. Please mention “Application for SWA Country Liaison Officer position” in the topic of the email.

Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted and advanced to the next stage of the selection process. 

For additional information please visit the SWA website at or LIS-Water website at





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