Operations Grants and Finance Specialist I, WRI Ross Center for Sustainable Cities

  • World Resource Institute
  • Washington, DC
  • Mar 08, 2023
Full time Financial Corporate Finance Finance MBA Financial Analyst Accounting

Job Description

Job Description

This position is remote-eligible and only for consideration within the United States where WRI is state registered. Existing work authorization is required at the time of application submission. WRI is unable to sponsor any visa work sponsorship for this position.

Program Overview:

The WRI Ross Center for Sustainable Cities (Cities Program) helps to transform cities into compact, connected and resilient spaces that provide healthy, accessible, and prosperous living environments for their residents. We coordinate the Cities Program’s extensive technical and practical expertise through eight integrated solution areas: Integrated Transport Systems, Vision Zero, Zero Carbon Buildings, Livable Neighborhoods, Electric Mobility, Water/Heat Resilience, Air Quality and Inclusive Climate & Energy Action Planning. Data and Urban Finance are cross-cutting themes that inform all of our solution offerings. We implement our solutions by working deeply with multiple stakeholders over long periods of time to demonstrate possibilities in rapidly transforming cities. We expand our impact to other cities by leveraging these demonstrated possibilities to convene multiple cross-sectoral stakeholders and partnering with city networks. Our research and projects in cities and in national policies connect environmental sustainability, health, safety, equity, and quality of life.

Job Summary:

The Operations team is a part of the WRI Ross Center’s Core Functions, responsible for the coordination and support of the entire program’s activities and strategic direction. The Grants and Finance Specialist I for this team plays a central role in this institutional coordination by helping to ensure the financial health of the program and its compliance with donor requests and restrictions. They are also responsible for managing a portfolio of highly matrixed project budgets, so they must collaborate effectively with counterparts on all of the program’s other teams and international offices located in Mexico, Colombia, Brazil, Turkey, India, China, Africa and Europe.

Job Responsibilities:

Financial Management (50% of time)

  • Update and maintain project budgets utilizing WRI’s budgeting and forecasting software (TM1)
  • Update and maintain project funding and allocations in coordination with workstream director(s) and project managers
  • Process invoices and payments for projects in compliance with WRI’s policies (subgrants, consultancies, work orders, etc.)
  • Assist project team in project closeout process including turnover documentation and financial reconciliation
  • Coordinate and advise on project budget management and reports
  • With project managers, review on a monthly basis the transactions and finances of the projects and update the budget
  • Prepare financial review template(s) for review with workstream director(s) and operations staff
  • Work with Salesforce to add new proposals
  • Develop fiscal year budget forecasts on a yearly basis in coordination with operations and workstream directors of both teams
  • Prepare participant agreements and provide travel support for WRI Ross Center Prize finalists, jury members, and other high value stakeholders

Program/Project Management (20% of time)

  • Process documentation for project commitments (i.e. agreements, contracts, work authorizations, and purchase orders)
  • Work with partners to help them understand and meet subgrant and contract requirements
  • Monitor program/project performance against contract requirements and deliverables
  • Manage various program, department and organizational trackers (publications, performance monitoring and others).

Grant Management (20% of time)

  • Lead the drafting of grant proposal budgets and assists in the collection & submission of formal proposals for grants
  • Submit all required grant forms as instructed by grant
  • Keep track of deliverables and reporting required under grants
  • Keep timely and accurate information on donors and contacts

Administration (10% of time)

  • Coordinate and schedule team meetings; provide support in organizing presentations, workshops, conferences, research seminars and other events for the program as needed
  • Provide timesheet guidance to workstream team members on a bi-weekly basis
  • Coordinate recruitment and manage onboarding of new staff members as needed. Update and maintain new hire staffing information with operations.

Job Qualifications:

  • Minimum of 1 year of relevant, full-time work experience supporting project management functions
  • Bachelor’s degree in economics, finance, accounting, public policy, political science, international affairs, or similar subject required
  • Keen interest in the mission and work of the WRI Ross Center for Sustainable Cities
  • Detail-oriented, highly organized individual with experience and interest in program management, financial management, budgeting, and writing
  • Must be adaptable to rapidly changing priorities and have the ability to manage multiple projects with varying deadlines
  • Strong process orientation with sensitivity to quality
  • Ability to work independently with minimal supervision
  • Strong writing, database management, and proofreading skills
  • Excellent computer skills in Microsoft Office, especially Excel; experience with statistical analysis and budgeting software is highly desirable
  • Excellent communication skills, including the ability to work well in a team and with international colleagues
  • In addition to excellent written and spoken English, additional language skills are a plus, especially in Spanish, Portuguese, Turkish, Chinese, French, and/or Hindi
  • US work authorization is required for all WRI US opportunities.

Potential Salary:

$57,000-$65,000.Salary is commensurate with experience and other compensable factors

How to Apply:

Please submit a personalized cover letter with resume. 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 seven critical challenges that the world must overcome this decade to secure a sustainable future for people and the planet: climate change, energy, food, forests, water, sustainable cities, and the ocean.

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 nearing $200 million. Founded in 1982, WRI has a global staff of over 1,800 people with work spanning 60 countries. We have offices in Africa, Brazil, China, Europe, India, Indonesia, Mexico, Colombia and the United States, as well as a growing presence in other countries and regions.

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.


Other, Work at Home, Financial Control, Corporate Accounting, Corporate Finance, Fund Accounting, General-Other: Accounting-Finance



$57,000- $65,000