Graduate Research Associate Description: Winter & Spring 2022
WaterNow Alliance is a network of local water leaders who want to advance sustainable, affordable, and climate resilient water solutions in their communities. We focus on innovative strategies to accelerate adoption of reuse and efficiency technologies, green infrastructure, watershed health, stormwater recapture, and groundwater management. Our goal is to support communities to become as water resilient as possible, as cost-effectively as possible, while protecting our natural resources for generations to come.
WaterNow Alliance (WNA) is seeking a Graduate Research Associate for a part-time role in the spring 2022 semester. Research Associate positions allow students the opportunity to gain valuable experience with a fast-growing sustainability-focused non-profit through hands on tasks and real responsibility.
This position will support the creation of a virtual resource library, synthesizing tools, resources and findings from WaterNow Alliance’s Project Accelerator program. The Project Accelerator program has partnered with over 20 communities to support the development of sustainable, affordable, and climate-resilient solutions to stormwater, drinking water, and wastewater management challenges. The collaborations have ranged from the creation of a green street roadmap and ordinance; regional outdoor water efficiency program; direct install program of efficient fixtures for low-income populations; and more.
The Research Associate will draw on these projects to develop a library of replicable, scalable solutions that other cities, towns, and utilities can adopt to advance sustainable water management practices in their communities. This virtual “library” of water management solutions will be hosted on the WaterNow Alliance webpage, offering communities – and particularly its intended audience of local decision makers and utility executive management and staff – an easily accessible database of resources, case studies, and explainers of key solutions and strategies.
The Research Associate will work closely with the Senior Water Resources Specialist and other team members to drive the development of this library, through the steps below:
- Review, compile, and categorize existing Project Accelerator materials.
- Conduct a survey and/or stakeholder engagement with past Project Accelerator participants for updates on the implementation of the project and lessons learned.
- Translate existing Project Accelerator materials into more universally applicable resources, e.g., describing how the model landscape ordinance developed for Jordan Valley Water Conservancy District can be used by others; identifying / synthesizing best practices or steps for developing a grassroots engagement program based on Cleveland’s Project Accelerator; developing a guide for how communities can update their Land Development Code, with a goal of increasing community resilience related to water supply and stormwater management, based on Centennial’s example; creating a template workbook to assist HOAs in calculating water savings and documenting actions taken by the HOAs to conserve water, based on the San Clemente model. (The resources that are prioritized can be tailored as much as is feasible to the interests and experiences of the Research Associate.)
- Develop a Project Accelerator resource library that provides WaterNow members the ability to access, search, review, and download the materials created.
- Conduct a beta testing process of the Project Accelerator resource library and revise the user-interface as needed based on feedback.
A strong candidate will possess the following attributes:
- Excellent writing and research skills, proficiency with MS Word and Excel;
- Demonstrated commitment to and experience in sustainable water policy;
- Experience with or interest in local government;
- High degree of professionalism;
- Organized with good attention to detail;
- Experience with or a willingness to learn basic WordPress and website updating skills;
- Strong work ethic
Qualifications and Requirements:
• Graduate student (enrolled in or recently graduated from a program)
• Available beginning January through April 2022 (flexible)
• Available for a minimum time commitment of 10 hours per week for at least 12 weeks
This is a volunteer position and work stipends are not available. WaterNow Research Associate positions may be eligible for course credit, and we will support applicants’ efforts to receive credit.
Interested in applying?
Please send a cover letter, resume, and writing sample to Senior Water Resources Specialist Amy Weinfurter, at email@example.com. Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis. If you have any questions, feel free to email firstname.lastname@example.org.