Practice Lead (Water Stewardship) - Water Witness International

Practice Lead (Water Stewardship) - Water Witness International 

Location: Edinburgh based with international travel

Salary: £37,492 - £40,107

About the Organisation

Water Witness leads action, research and advocacy for a fair water future where all people can access the water needed to thrive, and are protected against floods, drought, pollution, ecosystem degradation and water conflict.

About the Role

The practice lead in water stewardship will co-ordinate, deliver and lead Water Witness’s practice and programmes focused on ‘redefining corporate responsibility’ for water. Specific responsibilities include:

(i) Programme management

Primary focus will be on ensuring the successful delivery of our ‘Putting water stewardship to work for Africa’ programme. This work targets improved water security for poverty reduction & inclusive growth through alignment with the Alliance for Water Stewardship standard in key sectors & geographies. This will involve working with local teams to co-lead & provide technical assistance on:

  • Participatory water risk and opportunity assessments in various sectors and at several geographical scales

(site, industrial park, municipality, catchment, national, global);

  • Development and delivery of water stewardship plans, innovations and training;
  • Stakeholder convening, issue prioritisation, ownership and learning;
  • Ensuring the needs of vulnerable people are clearly heard and acted upon;
  • Documentation and analysis of evidence, lessons and insights;
  • Generation of advocacy objectives & materials, & delivery of compelling communications & influencing  strategies at multiple scales to secure system change
  • Strategic support for the establishment of AWS Africa as an autonomous entity and ensuring the delivery of the regionally owned AWS Africa strategy;
  • Building capacity, knowledge and political will for improved water stewardship across the region and within
  • global value chains.

In order to deliver on this programme, the post holder will undertake a wide range of programme management activities including:

  • Planning, delivery and reporting against programme budgets, outputs and outcomes.
  • Management, mentorship and support to UK and overseas staff, partners and Country Advisory Group members, providing direct line management to 2-3 FTEs.
  • Assignment and tracking of tasks and resources through regular communication, meetings and visits to ensure impact within budget and timescales.
  • Commissioning and management of external contracts and partnership agreements.
  • Authoring and editing of reports, quality assurance, statutory compliance and alignment with internal policies.

(ii) Research, advocacy and influence

The post holder will take responsibility for aspects of our strategy relating to ‘redefining corporate responsibility’, ‘progressive financing’ and ‘triggering political, social and economic change for water security’. Priorities will be determined via joint planning with the senior management team, and may include:

  • Investigating performance of multinational corporations on water through our Fair Water Footprints Programme;
  • Supporting civil society organisations & journalists with resources, knowledge & capabilities required to demand improved performance on water by the private sector & financiers;
  • Contribute to the continual improvement and development of the AWS standard and other strategic water stewardship approaches through rigorous evidence generation and learning;
  • Design and delivery of research and advocacy programmes including on tax justice and water; company and product indicators; water ‘capture’ and public-good water allocation;
  • Research and development of water stewardship approaches at multiple scales as a mechanism for climate resilience (small-holder farmers, cities, etc);
  • Co-developing the metrics, indicators and incentive mechanisms to enable investors, bankers and fund managers to reward good water stewardship and punish poor performance;
  • Research and development of clear messages for how consumers, decision makers and shareholders can take action to influence corporate and investor performance on water;
  • Develop compelling communications and share these effectively to elevate water issues within global media & debate.

(iii) Strategic leadership, partnerships and fundraising

As practice lead for water stewardship practice the postholder will: Proactively input to, and track global and national debates on water stewardship

  • Identify and develop constructive partnerships in pursuit of our strategic objectives;
  • Evolve Water Witness’s programme portfolio on water stewardship and corporate engagement
  • Represent the organisation at a senior level within local, regional and global engagements;
  • Identify, develop and secure fundraising opportunities;
  • Ensure that our systems, assets and processes are effective & appropriate.
  • Comply with Water Witness’s internal policies

How to Apply: 

More information, including the person specification for this position, can be found on the Water Witness website. All correspondence should be sent to with ‘Practice Lead - Water Stewardship’ in the subject line. Please provide a CV and cover letter in ONE single document. The cover letter should be no more than two pages long, must explain why you want to work in this position, and should clearly set out how your skills and experience make you a good fit. Please also attach a single example of your written work which best demonstrates your writing capabilities. This should be a recent, pre-existing report or paper of which you are the primary author. On this occasion only those with an existing right to work and live in the UK should apply.



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