Water Allocation Officer

South Africa is a water scarce country with highly variable rainfall and drought patterns, making water a high premium reserve. Using water efficiently is critical for both effective ecosystem functioning as well as sustainably providing water for basic human needs. Water allocation involves assessing present and future water demand and enabling adequate and equitable access to water, for commercial and domestic use.

Water allocation officers monitor the allocation and use of water from rivers, dams and reservoirs. They advise on and develop distribution and allocation policies, strategies and guidelines for water use. They also oversee water use registration and licensing and maintain oversight of water availability and demand. Some officers can also provide inputs for water user billing and water pricing.

Water allocation officers work in an office environment but often travel to sites to monitor and perform inspections. As part of their evaluations, they can engage with community members, local departments and engineering and water professionals.


Water allocation officers require a thorough understanding of the water cycle, urban and rural water systems and knowledge of water use guidelines, laws, policies and regulations. They will further benefit from:

  • Ability to use geographical software to monitor and map data
  • Strong problem-solving ability
  • Analytical skills with excellent critical thinking capacity
  • Good communication and negotiation skills


Develop and implement water use regulatory frameworks for institutions and organisations

Assess water use license applications and permits

Coordinate varied stakeholder inputs into water use licensing 

Provide support and advise water use authorisation processes


B.Sc., B.Sc. (Hons), M.Sc. in Hydrology at NWU, UKZN, Univen and Unizulu

B.Sc., B.Sc. (Hons), M.Sc. in Environmental Science specialising in Water Science at NWU, RU, UJ, UMP, UP and Wits

B.Sc., B.Sc. (Hons), M.Sc. in Environmental and Water Science at UWC

B.Sc. in Hydrology and Water Resources Management at CUT

Diploma, Advanced Diploma, M.Tech in Water Science and Technology at TUT


National, provincial and local government.

Water utility companies.

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