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Water Supply, Sanitation, and Hygiene (WASH) Specialist

Posting Number: #101-21

Position Title: Water Supply, Sanitation, and Hygiene (WASH) Specialist

Closing Date: Until Filled

Location: Washington, DC

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A. Position Identification

Position Title: Water Supply, Sanitation, and Hygiene (WASH) Specialist

Division: Nutrition and Environmental Health Division

Department: GH/Maternal and Child Health and Nutrition Office

Work Location: 500 D street SW, Washington, DC 20001

Supervisor’s Title: GHTP Deputy Project Director

Work Status: Full-time

FLSA: Exempt

Classification: GS 12 Equivalent

Funding Sources: MCHN

B. Summary Statement

In partnership with host countries, donors, international organizations, non-governmental organizations, and the private sector, the US Agency for International Development (USAID) supports developing countries in design, implementation and evaluation of water supply, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) programs. As one component of its environmental health activities, the Bureau for Global Health, Office of Maternal and Child Health, and Nutrition (GH/MCHN), has supported technical assistance and capacity building efforts in this sector for nearly three decades. MCHN’s WASH efforts focus on strengthening WASH sector governance and financing, extending and improving access to drinking water and sanitation services, and adoption of key hygiene behaviors. Examples include support for ending open defecation, handwashing with soap, clean environments for infants and young children, WASH in Health Care Facilities, and drinking water service operation and maintenance models.

C. Job Requirements

Consistent with these efforts, and to support not only GH/MCHN’s objectives but those of USAID’s other Bureaus and overseas field Missions, the WASH Specialist will provide USAID with programmatic and technical expertise in water, sanitation, hygiene, and other areas of environmental health as these relate to public health, and particularly to child survival.

D. Essential Duties and Responsibilities

Providing strategic guidance and expertise, including assisting with the preparation and/or review of strategies and plans to address needs at the global and country level.

  • Because of the cross-cutting nature of water and sanitation, the Specialist will explore and encourage integration of WASH activities into other existing or planned health activities, and into other development sectors like governance and education. Additional programmatic opportunities could include joint planning with the Humanitarian Assistance Bureau for humanitarian response, or collaboration with other USG units outside of USAID.

Serving subject matter expert to USAID and its partners.

  • The Specialist will provide assistance to USAID staff and cooperating agencies on environmental health issues. The Advisor will provide technical support in the development, evaluation, and dissemination of innovative program approaches in health-focused water supply and sanitation activities and liaise with the cross-bureau Water Team to link with other water sector activities, including integrated water resources management. S/he will engage in technical discussions, research and analysis activities as necessary to make substantive technical contributions.
  • Assessing current health literature and international guidelines, and providing recommendations to USAID.
  • Follow global developments and provide recommendations to USAID regarding the application of this information to USAID’s technical and strategic approaches.
  • Keeping current on the latest literature, reports and international guidelines and standards.

Contributing to the routine work, including providing technical updates, briefers and other documents that describe USAID’s activities, research and progress; preparing portfolio reviews and reports; reviewing documents such as annual reports and operational plans; and preparing responses to Q&As and other requests for information.

  • The Specialist will also provide input into training materials and presentations on water/sanitation/hygiene to Missions, as well as participate in broader capacity building activities for the Agency for programming under the Paul Simon Water for the World Act.
  • The Specialist will provide technical support on WASH activities within the Global Health portfolio of $6.5million. The Advisor will collaborate with parts of GH and other bureaus to provide technical assistance in design and/or evaluation of projects involving WASH or other areas of environmental health.
  • Monitoring and providing input into USAID’s agenda.

Providing technical advice to ensure that country programs are consistent with current practice, international standards and recommendations.   

  • The Specialist will work with mission staff to develop options for strategic mission engagement in the sector, identify potential mechanisms for implementation, and develop detailed program descriptions and amendments for procurement.
  • Assisting countries in developing their capacity to plan and manage activities.
  • Assisting international and local partners at the country level in WASH.

Contributing public health expertise and participating in working groups and task forces

Reviewing and synthesizing information about USAID programs, to identify operational priorities and make recommendations.

  • WASH Program Development- At the programmatic level, the Specialist will work with colleagues in USAID field missions to survey the water resources and water/sanitation/hygiene situation in-country, explore area(s) of competitive advantage for potential USAID engagement, and identify opportunities to implement and evaluate gender-sensitive water, sanitation, and hygiene activities and programs.

Preparing and submitting papers to professional journals and meetings.

  • Advancing USAID’s WASH objectives in national and international fora.
  • The Specialist will actively participate in and provide technical guidance on national, international and policy levels to advance its objectives in WASH. This could include meetings with World Bank’s Water and Sanitation Program and various UN Agencies, as well as conferences and meetings of health and water organizations.

 Other Duties

Professional Development.

  • Patriciate in professional continuing education, skills training and professional meetings to enhance relevant technical skills and career development
  • Complete and execute an Individual Learning and Training Plan and Annual Work Plan.
  • Other duties as assigned.

 E. Minimum Qualification Requirements

  • Master’s degree and 5 years’ relevant experience or Bachelor’s degree and 7 years’ of relevant experience
  • At least 5 years of professional experience in WASH (Water Supply, Sanitation, and Hygiene) and/or job responsibilities related to PD requirements.
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills
  • Working knowledge of French a plus
  • International Travel Required, estimated at 20-30%

 F. Clearance Required

  • Facility Access

Credence Management Solutions, LLC and Public Health Institute are Equal Opportunity Employers.  All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, age, or disability.

This position described in this announcement falls under a contract with USAID, and therefore is subject to the provisions put forward in OMB Circular A-76 which prohibit contractors from performing inherently governmental functions.  Specifically, TPs placed in USAID positions will not perform inherently governmental functions, nor supervise any employees other than the contractor’s own staff, nor make final decisions or sign documents that commit the U.S. Government.

Please note: The Public Health Institute (PHI) and its partner, Credence Management Solutions, are both employers for the Global Health Technical Professionals (GHTP) project which provides expertise in support of USAID global health programs. The hiring of this position will be through the PHI and as such the selected person will become a PHI employee. Your applicant data will be shared with both organizations.


The Public Health Institute is committed to a policy that provides equal employment opportunities to all employees and applicants for employment without regard to race, color, sex, religion, national origin, ancestry, age, marital status, pregnancy, medical condition including genetic characteristics, physical or mental disability, veteran status, gender identification and expression, sexual orientation, and to make all employment decisions so as to further this principle of equal employment opportunity. To this end, the PHI will not discriminate against any employee or applicant for employment because of race, color, sex, religion, national origin, ancestry, age, marital status, pregnancy, medical condition including genetic characteristics, physical or mental disability, veteran status, gender identification and expression, sexual orientation, and will take affirmative action to ensure that applicants are offered employment and employees are treated during employment without regard to these characteristics.

To apply for any position, you must create an account on the Public Health Institute’s job application site. After creating your account, you may search the open positions and apply for the specific position that interests you. Please note, mailed and emailed applications will not be accepted.

We’re so pleased the Public Health Institute is an organization you would like to work with. Do you have questions about this opportunity? If so, email our recruitment team at Recruitment@phi.org.

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