Senior Soil & Water Conservation Specialist 133 views5 applications

Job Description

Vacancy Announcement #200/2023

Senior Soil & Water Conservation Specialist

Climate Change Cluster


Contract duration: 31.12.2026

Application deadline: 09.12.2023

Duty station: Addis Ababa (Frequent travel to lowland regions is required)

GIZ supports the Ethiopian Government in various areas, increasingly also in the Ethiopian lowlands, which account for nearly 60% of Ethiopia’s land area. They are inhabited by more than 18 million (agro)pastoralists, and people who create their livelihood from related professions. Due to population growth and the increasingly frequent occurrence of extreme weather events, this livelihood system is increasingly put at risk and the people, their livestock and the harvests have become increasingly vulnerable. Extensive resource use like overgrazing and deforestation causes food insecurity, soil degradation, and erosion. The result are dry valleys, in which rainwater flows quickly out of the area before being able to infiltrate into the soil. This further exacerbates desertification and food insecurity. To address this issue, the Dry Valley Rehabilitation and Productive Use (DVRPU) approach was developed in cooperation with the Ministry of Agriculture (MoA) and the Bureaus responsible for Agriculture, Livestock and Natural Resource Development (BoA) in Afar and Somali regions.

The Capacity Development for Strengthening Drought Resilience (CDSDR) Project is in its third phase. It promotes the DVRPU approach with a series of technical, biological, economic, social, institutional, and managerial measures applied to rehabilitate entire dry valleys for the benefit of the inhabitants and their animals while ensuring environmental stability. Besides upscaling of the approach in other Woredas of Somali and Afar regions, it will further expand its application to selected lowland areas of Oromia and SNNPR regions.

The Senior Soil and Water Conservation (SWC) Specialist works together with the existing team of, Remote sensing experts, Rural Development Advisors, Livelihood Specialists and existing SWC experts. She/He supports the CDSDR III implementation in Oromia, SERS, Afar and Somali  regions.

Core responsibility is the state-of-the-art and individually adapted  construction design of water-spreading-weirs and dry stone measures and the planning and supervision of their construction. Evenly, the planning of maintenance and repairs of already existing structures of that kind. In addition, design of minor irrigation and shallow well installations will be part of the responsibilities. All these tasks are done in coordination with the relevant governmental project partners and participatorily with the stakeholder communities involved.

The Senior SWC Specialist is responsible to support the project’s objectives by:

  • Developing integrated soil and water conservation approaches in collaboration with government services and local communities.
  • Studying, designing and constructing of physical soil and water conservation measures in selected kebeles in different lowland regions in Ethiopia.

The SWC Specialist performs the following tasks:

  • Supports on technical aspects of project implementation (water harvesting, irrigation, soil and water management).
  • Supports the local communities for the implementation of land rehabilitation measures.
  • Undertakes site identification, biophysical and socioeconomic problem identification, recommendation of measures, study and design of physical soil and water conservation measures.
  • Develops bill of quantity and preparation of ToRs for contracts.
  • Supports Participatory community land use planning (PCLP);
  • Prepares implementation plan of recommended physical soil and water conservation measures.
  • Follows up and ensures proper implementation of measures and provide technical reports to regional project.
  • Provides advice and technical supports on the physical soil and water conservation measures to regional project teams.
  • Reports on output/outcomes of implemented technical measures.
  • Supervising construction contractors, consultants and grant recipients to fulfil their contractual obligations.
  • Assure collection of data as required by the project monitoring and evaluation system.
  • Keeps regular contact and exchange of information with woreda level in CDSDR III intervention areas.

Other duties/additional tasks

The Senior SWC Specialist performs other duties and tasks at the request of the management.

Job Requirements


  • Bachelor’s degree in Soil and Water conservation Engineering, Agricultural Engineering or, Civil engineering.

Professional experience

  • 10 years practical field experience of working with soil conservation and water resources management in arid and semi-arid lowlands,
  • Proven ability of identification, recommendation, planning, designing, construction and construction supervision of physical soil and water conservation structures in lowland areas like water spreading weirs, Small Earth/Concrete Dams.
  • Experience with pastoral and/ or agro-pastoral communities in arid and semi-arid lowlands, preferably in Afar, Oromia, SNNP Southern Ethiopia or Somali region.
  • Understanding of impacts of environmental degradation and alternative natural resource management approaches.
  • Experience in working with governmental structures, international organizations, NGOs and/or research institutes.
  • Experience in DVRUP and PCLP is an added advantage

Other knowledge, additional competencies

  • High level of motivation, proactivity, self-discipline, integrity and accountability.
  • Proven skill of working in a technical team and problem-solving ability.
  • Readiness to work in rural lowland circumstances and frequent travel to project sites.
  • Very good English and Amharic language skills.
  • Computer skills in software application AutoCAD, MS-Office.

Interested and qualified Female candidates shall submit their motivation letter along with their recent CV to: [email protected].


Please make sure you mention the vacancy number and position ‘Senior Soil & Water Conservation Specialist #200/2023’ in the subject line of your email application.

Due to the large number of applications, we categorize applications with vacancy numbers.

Applications without vacancy numbers in subject lines might not be categorized in the appropriate folder and could be disqualified.

Only short-listed candidates will be contacted.

We encourage persons with disabilities to apply for the position. In the case of equal qualification, persons with disabilities will be given preference.

Applications from qualified women are encouraged.

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