Consultant (Flood Modeler)

International Water Management Institute (IWMI)

Pelawatta, , LK


The Water Risks and Disasters (WRD) Research Group within the International Water Management Institute’s (IWMI’s) Building Resilience Strategic Program has a good pipeline and portfolio of projects. We are looking to strengthen our resources. This will be to give additional capacity and capability to both our internal and external clients, and to add to the experiences of our existing team.

We require an experienced Flood Modeler to join our WRD team working on the development of large-scale, regional flood models that use real-time weather forecasts and climate change scenarios for current and future flood mapping and risk assessment. These developments will involve you in all stages from hazard modelling, loss modelling and application of the models to flood index insurance applications. You will contribute to implementation and interpretation of risk analysis, with a focus on water-related disaster risks. Your work will involve activities related to disaster preparedness and planning, risk reduction, and response and recovery, taking multi-hazard and multi-sectoral perspectives.

This consultancy will involve activities to support pilot implementation of Index-based Flood Insurance (IBFI) in Bihar, India. Tasks may include the following:

  • Improve the existing flood hazard model in the Bagmati River Basin, Bihar, to derive flood extent (depth and duration) for index insurance application.
  • Set up a flood model either using HEC-RAS or MIKE FLOOD for a catchment area in the Kelani River Basin, Sri Lanka, and generate flood characteristics.
  • Estimate critical flood parameters – daily depth, duration and probability of the event – in gridded format over the study area.
  • Assist in the completion of the regional flood forecasting model, including calibration and validation of the model, jointly with the WRD team and in consultation with national partners.
  • Develop a flood frequency analysis for the study area and calculate the lead time in flood forecasting.
  • Contribute to the mid-term report detailing scale and extent of the model, model conceptualization, assumptions, extent of data availability and potential effect on the modelling activities, model build, calibration procedure, initial and calibrated model parameters, validation, model performance in depicting observed flood scenarios and detailed description of results.
  • Contribute to the final technical reports and handing over of the model and data.


The successful candidate will have an MSc or PhD degree/equivalent qualification in Water Resources, Environmental Engineering or Geography, or similar and relevant professional qualifications (equivalent or nearing qualification). Essential experience and competencies for this role are given below:

  • Prior and proven experience of 1D-2D modelling using HEC-RAS, MIKE FLOOD, SOBEK or ISIS.
  • An awareness and appreciation of hydrological assessment, with a working knowledge of the hydrology of South Asia.
  • Proven skills in using geographic information systems (GIS), including ArcGIS and freeware open source GIS products, with the ability to code software for data preparation and analysis, e.g., Python.
  • Experience in carrying out flood modeling and risk analyses for planning, development and design of flood management strategies and investments.
  • Preparing high-quality research reports and journal articles.
  • Experience of working in multidisciplinary and multicultural teams.

The duration of the consultancy will be three (03) months, with the possibility of extension depending on performance and availability of resources. The consultant will be based in Colombo, Sri Lanka, or in India.

The International Water Management Institute (IWMI) is a non-profit, research-for-development organization focused on the sustainable use of water and land resources in developing countries. IWMI is headquartered in Colombo, Sri Lanka, with regional offices and projects across Asia and Africa.

Your application must include a copy of your curriculum vitae, including previous experience, together with a cover letter and the names and e-mail addresses of three professional referees.