In this episode of the Diving into Water and Sanitation Careers podcast, host Josh Newton is joined by Dr. Aaron T. Wolf, professor of geography at Oregon State University (USA) and professor of water diplomacy at IHE-Delft Institute for Water Education in the Netherlands. Aaron has acted as a consultant to the US Government, the World Bank, and several international governments and development partners on various aspects of water resources and conflict management. A trained mediator/ facilitator, he directs the Program in Water Conflict Management and Transformation, through which he has offered workshops, facilitations, and mediation in basins throughout the world.
As told in this conversation with Josh, Aaron began professionally contributing to water resources management in a technical role with a government agency. Inspired by a university class on water science and policy, he quickly realized the power of water to bring people together in dialogue, and began to take steps on a different professional path that he would follow from there on out, as a facilitator and mediator, teacher, researcher, amongst more. Based on his lived experiences, Aaron attests to the importance of having both a keen understanding of the technical aspects of water and of people and communities, in order to best contribute to challenges in water and sanitation. Listen in to hear Aaron describe the arc of his career, and the rich lessons it has imparted, in this podcast episode.
In this episode, Aaron shares career advice that transcends career stages, and perhaps even water and sanitation, such as his guidance to lead an ethical, transparent path in one’s career by sticking to professional commitments. You will hear about Aaron’s top career advice, about how the diversity within his work has been key to dealing with inevitable challenges, and about Aaron’s hopes for the future of the water and sanitation community. Additionally, in this episode, we continue facilitating a generational exchange, as Aaron reflects on Antonella’s question posed in the last episode, and asks a difficult, though familiar, question, to our next guest.
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This podcast was made possible by the generous support of Josh’s Water Jobs by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC).