Senior Program Officer (Groundwater/ Agriculture Water)

World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF)
Washington, DC, United States
Position Type: 
Organization Type: 
NGO/Civil Society
Experience Level: 
Junior (3-4 Years)
Degree Required: 
Advanced Degree (Master's or JD)


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World Wildlife Fund (WWF), the world’s leading conservation organization, seeks a Senior Program Officer, Groundwater/Agriculture Water based in our Washington, DC office. The Freshwater team has four primary initiatives that work to ensure the conservation of water for people and nature – Free-Flowing Rivers, the Pantanal Challenge, Corporate Water Stewardship, and Water in North America, specifically work on the Rio Grande/Rio Bravo river basin.  The Senior Program Officer will serve as the primary focal point on the Freshwater team for issues and solutions related to agricultural water management, groundwater hydrology, and related science and policy areas.

The Senior Program Officer will be the primary focal point for coordinating our efforts related to agricultural water management and groundwater management.  The incumbent would be working initially to support new strategy development and implementation for Water in North America, specifically engaging partners in the Rio Grande/Rio Bravo basin, especially WWF-Mexico.  The incumbent would also serve as the primary technical focal point on the Freshwater team, who is working in coordination with others within WWF, to develop harmonized approaches in priority geographies – based on sound science, policy and stakeholder engagement - to address the drivers and threats to biodiversity and freshwater ecosystems due to changes in agriculture and groundwater challenges globally.  The incumbent will also work to assess the validity and utility of water balance/accounting models that link groundwater and surface water systems and include integration and downscaling of climate change scenario planning.  The incumbent will work in close collaboration with colleagues within WWF, including on different practice teams, such as Markets and Food, Forests, Global Science, as well as with external partners, including private sector companies, academic institutions, and government agencies. 


  • Connect water and agriculture issues globally and liaise with other WWF practice areas, Science team and academic community for scientific input
  • Provide technical input to address reducing agriculture’s negative impacts on quality and quantity of freshwater across the Freshwater program and globally in key priority geographies
  • Provide technical input on hydrologic connections between groundwater and surface water, including water reserves
  • Integrate and downscale climate change scenario planning into work of Freshwater team related to solutions developed to address challenges of agricultural water management and groundwater
  • Understand incentives of key agricultural water stakeholders, policy dynamics and build and maintain relationships and strategic partnerships to address solutions in key geographies
  • Provide strategic vision and support new initiative development, critically assessing WWF’s unique role and value in US and in other priority geographies


  • Bachelors degree in environmental science, agricultural water management, groundwater hydrology, irrigation or related fields preferred; Advance degree also preferable
  • 6 years relevant experience with Bachelors, 3 years with Advanced degree
  • Hydrological modeling and climate scenario planning modeling experience
  • Experience with environmental flow modeling highly desirable
  • Ability to understand and technically assess a variety of hydrological models for use from local to global scales with different type of methods, data sources, and assumptions
  • Ability to translate technical science and model results to conservation and policy applications
  • Excellent written, oral and presentation skills
  • GIS and spatial mapping experience a plus
  • Ability to communicate in Spanish, both orally and in writing, highly desired