Grants & Finance Specialist I, Water Program

Grants & Contracts Washington, District of Columbia

Water Program Overview

WRI’s Water Program works with businesses, governments, and civil society to ensure a water-secure future - addressing both water quantity and quality challenges. We do this through several projects and initiatives around the world. We conduct economic and other analyses to identify water-related challenges globally and, we identify solutions—such as restoring ecosystem services—to alleviate stresses on the world’s water supplies.

Job Summary

In this role, you will be responsible for helping to oversee budgets, grants and contracts for several projects within the Program. This will include helping to develop budgets for new proposals, tracking and updating current project budgets and expenditure, preparing financial reports and invoices, contracts and sub-contracts, and other ad-hoc administrative and operational tasks as needed. You will work closely with WRI’s grants and contracts team, members of the Water Program and will be part of a growing team of Grants and Finance Specialists within WRI’s Food, Forests, Water and Ocean Programs

Job Responsibilities

Contract and Subgrant Management (30%)

  • Draft and revise contracts and subgrants with partners and contractors.
  • Help monitor partners to ensure the timely and accurate submission of progress and financial reports.
  • Submit and track requests for payment in a timely manner and ensure that payments processed are consistent with WRI’s internal policies and grant requirements.
  • Assist project managers in ensuring compliance with all grants and contracts, particularly detailed government grant requirements.

Financial Planning and Administration (50%)

  • Assist in the preparation of annual budgets as well as budgets for all new proposals and grants. 
  • Monitor budgets throughout the year in consultation with project managers and the Senior Operations Manager for Food, Forests and Water
  • Review and track monthly expenses and staff labor hours
  • Prepare detailed financial reports to funders as needed and ensure that progress reports are submitted in a timely manner.

Project Management (20%)

  • Support monitoring and tracking of project deliverables to ensure that they are submitted within the period of performance and coordinate the submission of invoices.
  • Liaise with internal staff and stakeholders to problem solve and generate solutions to systemic issues and effective ways to complete tasks as needed.
  • Support donor stewardship and communications – especially as it relates to finance and compliance issues.
  • Additional administrative duties as needed.

Job Qualifications

  • Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration, Financial Management, or other related discipline 
  • One+ years of relevant work experience in financial management and budgeting
  • Detail-oriented, highly organized individual with experience and interest in program operations, grant compliance, financial management, and budgeting
  • Adaptable to rapidly changing priorities and have the ability to manage multiple projects with varying deadlines
  • Attention to deadlines, particularly with regard to grant compliance and monitoring subgrantees and contractors
  • Patience and perseverance in understanding and explaining issues to partners and contractors
  • Strong process orientation with sensitivity to quality
  • Ability to work independently with minimal supervision, and demonstrated strong work ethic 
  • Strong writing and proofreading skills
  • Excellent communication skills, including the ability to work well in a team
  • US work authorization is required. WRI is unable to provide visa sponsorship for this opportunity.

How to Apply

Applicants must apply through the WRI Careers portal to be considered.

WRI Overview

World Resources Institute (WRI) is an independent, nonprofit global research organization that turns big ideas into action at the nexus of environment, economic opportunity and human well-being. We are working to address six critical challenges that the world must overcome this decade in order to secure a sustainable future for people and the planet: climate change, energy, food, forests, water and sustainable cities.

We are passionate. We value our diversity of interests, skills and backgrounds. We have a flexible work environment. And we share a common goal to catalyze change that will improve the lives of people. Our shared ideals are at the core of our approach. They include: integrity, innovation, urgency, independence and respect.

The foundation of our work is delivering high-quality research, data, maps and analysis to solve the world’s greatest environment and international development challenges, and improve people’s lives. We work with leaders in government, business and civil society to drive ambitious action and create change on the ground. Equally important, we bring together partners to develop breakthrough ideas and scale-up solutions for far-reaching, enduring impact.

We have been growing rapidly: our staff has doubled in size over the past 5 years and our operating budget is now $100 million. Founded in 1982, WRI has a global staff of nearly 700 people with work spanning 50 countries. We have offices in AfricaBrazilChinaEuropeIndiaIndonesiaMexico and the United States.  

WRI is committed to advancing gender and social equity for human well-being in our mission and applies this principle to our organizational and programmatic practices.  

The World Resources Institute ( is an environmental and development research and policy organization that creates solutions to protect the Earth and improve people’s lives. As an Equal Opportunity Employer, it is WRI’s policy to recruit, hire, and provide opportunities for advancement in all job classifications without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, citizenship, marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity, parental status, protected veteran status, or disability. WRI’s global agenda requires a staff that is diverse – with respect to race, gender, cultural, and international background. Diverse perspectives and experience enhance the way WRI selects and approaches issues, as well as the creativity and applicability of WRI's policy research and analysis. WRI, therefore, encourages applications from U.S. minorities, persons from other countries (especially developing nations), and from women of all backgrounds.