Consultant for Independent Evaluation

United Nations Development Programme, Thailand

Skill Required:, Monitoring and Evaluation
Preferred Experience: 
Above 10 Years
Closing Date for Applications: 
8th March, 2021


Job Description

UNDP is committed to achieving workforce diversity in terms of gender, nationality and culture. Individuals from minority groups, indigenous groups and persons with disabilities are equally encouraged to apply. All applications will be treated with the strictest confidence.
UNDP does not tolerate sexual exploitation and abuse, any kind of harassment, including sexual harassment, and discrimination. All selected candidates will, therefore, undergo rigorous reference and background checks.

BACKGROUND

  • In the run-up to the closure of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Office in the Republic of Korea (RoK) in 2010, a programme on South-South cooperation jointly implemented by the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology (MEST) and UNDP was evaluated. The evaluation showed an interest from partner countries, especially in the Asia-Pacific Region, to have the project continued beyond 2010. Thus, the Ministry and the then Special Unit for South-South Cooperation (SU-SSC) engaged in discussions that culminated in the design and implementation of the Facility/Programme for Capacity Development for Poverty Reduction through South-South and Triangular Cooperation in Education, Science and Technology, or RoK-UNOSSC Facility.
  • The Facility Phase I (2010-2016) was implemented with the basic structure inherited from the RoK/UNDP South-South project of 2005-2009. In a nutshell, a number of RoK Institutions were selected to implement projects based on proposals submitted to the SU-SSC. The projects were distributed across education, science and technology themes. Furthermore, one of the main criteria for participation was demonstrating that the RoK institution had a counterpart institution in a country that would work with them. The result was that the projects were usually located in local institutions and unknown to central government. Furthermore, almost every institution worked in a different country from the others.

Towards the end of Phase 1, a local (RoK) evaluation team was assembled with a view to synthesize lessons learnt and recommend the design of Phase 2 of the Facility. The findings of the evaluators were that although much had been achieved in Phase 1, the Facility could be strengthened by:

  • Supporting the Sustainable Development Goals and the 2030 Agenda;
  • The institutions to cease working in silos and instead work in a more integrated way;
  • Ensuring that project activities would be sustained by engaging national governments;
  • Bringing in inputs and collaborating with international organisations to scale up the impact of the Facility;
  • As a UN institution led Facility, to ensure that it is consistent with UN Frameworks in countries of operation.
  • After an iterative process involving inputs from RoK experts and project appraisal by the UNOSSC, the Facility Document was approved in June 2016. The approved Phase 2 document included three components. The first is a Scaled-up Project selected from the Phase 1 projects that were well implemented, achieved intended results and reached out to many countries. Although a few projects would have qualified, only one could be implemented for financial reasons. The second component reflected the intended scope to exchange knowledge, guide policy-level country interventions and document the progress made under Phase 2. This component was denoted as the Knowledge Platform. The third component responded to the idea to concentrate collaboration among the theme-focused institutions to fewer geographic areas. Based on a demand survey, 6 institutions were selected to work in two countries, Indonesia and Cambodia. This component is the Consortium, which is focused on implementing an integrated pilot project focused on ICT for business and social development of women, entrepreneurship, agriculture, school health, water management, and energy/environment.

Mechanisms to implement the Facility were then put in place including:

  • Selection of the participating institutions;
  • In line with recommendations to focus on an integrated development activity, a demand survey was sent to countries in Asia and Africa. Based on the response, Indonesia and Cambodia were deemed to be the most suitable for the pilot and were selected as host countries for the Consortium.
  • Further consultative meetings took place with national level government coordination organisations, namely, the Ministry of National Planning (BAPPENAS) in Indonesia and the General Secretariat of the National Science and Technology Council (GS-NSTC), Ministry of Planning in Cambodia. The UN Nations Resident Coordinator/UNDP RR either participated in these meetings or sent some staff members.

Project Objectives

  • The RoK-UNOSSC Facility Phase 2 was designed to share Korea’s and its partners’ development experiences and know-how in science, technology, and ICT as a way of bringing knowledge and technology application to promote social and economic advancement of developing countries in line with the 2030 Agenda.

Intended Outcome

  • Developing countries make progress in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) through triangular cooperation and knowledge bridging spearheaded by Korean institutions and partnering UN agencies.

Outcome Indicators

  • Improvement in the SDGs indicators of partner countries are considered outcome indicators of the project, as a capacity building project, the Korean institutions focused on building some indicators, particularly for application in village development.

Mid-Term Evaluation and latest progress

  • In December 2018- January 2019, a mid-term evaluation was undertaken to provide a comprehensive assessment of the project progress at its mid-way point to strengthen implementation for the remaining duration of the project. The evaluation was conducted based on desk reviews of project documents including bi-annual reports, meeting reports, and steering committee meeting minutes; focus group interviews; and analyses of key findings. The evaluation helped stakeholders to understand the barriers that some of the institutions face in implementing the project. Findings highlighted benefits to partner countries and participating Korean institutions. However, localization, communication, risk identification and administration/logistics were identified as remaining challenges.
  • After completion of the evaluation report, Project Management convened a post-midterm evaluation coordination meeting to scrutinize and assess project activities aligned with the demand of governments. Since then, the Facility stakeholders have put additional coordination arrangements to work together to enhance coordination in order to “deliver as one”. Their concerted actions resulted in achievement of the following outputs: harmonization of village index in Indonesia and establishment of a Technology Business Incubator (TBI) in Cambodia, led by the Platform institutions; the Government of Indonesia’s establishment of a South-South Centre of Excellence on Village Innovation (SSCEVI) based on the work of Consortium institutions; raising the public and policymakers’ awareness on electron beam applications in countries without the facilities; and advanced joint research and development (R&D) as well as technical exchanges on advanced applications of electron beam technology in diverse areas such as sterilization of bank notes, degradation of industrial effluents in water, and food preservation and production.

DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES

Objective

  • In compliance with the UNDP evaluation policy relating to the scale of the project (over $4 million) and provisions in the monitoring and evaluation framework included in the Phase 2 Facility Document, an End-of-Project evaluation is planned and budgeted for under the Facility. The overall objective of the End-of-Project evaluation is to assess how well the project has achieved its intended results.
  • The Phase 2 Facility implementation was originally scheduled to be completed by 31 December 2020. Initially, a final evaluation was planned to take place in October 2020 as recommended by the third Steering Committee in August 2019. During the Fourth Steering Committee Meeting in December 2020, the Steering Committee advised that the end-of-project evaluation should take place in Q1 of 2020 as the project has been extended to 30 June 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic outbreak. The extension will allow ROK institutions to complete their work at the community level. In addition, the partners working on Phase 3 would like to incorporate findings from the final evaluation in the planning for Phase 3.

Scope of Work

  • End-of-Project Evaluation will examine the following areas: Project results, Project management and monitoring, project activities, coordination arrangements and partnerships with the participating national and local government officials as well as other RoK institutions, local implementing agency roles including community leaders, academia, NGOs) and beneficiaries. It will focus on sustainability including exit strategies. It will also focus on risk planning. The evaluation will also review the responsiveness of stakeholders to the mid-term The evaluation findings. As a triangular cooperation project, the evaluation will focus on the implementation process, particularly application of triangular cooperation processes and facilitation of South-South Cooperation among the participating countries. The evaluation will be conducted through a desk-top review of pertinent documents. It will also include telephone interviews and virtual meetings.
  • The evaluation is intended to be forward-looking, to capture lessons learnt effectively and provide information on the nature, extent, and where possible, the results achieved through the facility in the 14 participating countries. (Note: Cambodia and Indonesia are two partner countries where all three components of the Facility are being undertaken.)

The methodology for the evaluation is envisaged to be as follows:

  • Desk study review of all relevant project documentation
  • Consultations with Programme Managers, the Science and Technology Policy Institute (STEPI) as a coordinating institution in the RoK, the Ministry of Science and ICT (MSIT) of the RoK; all ten (10) participating RoK institutions; counterpart institutions (local partners) in Cambodia and Indonesia, UN agencies such as the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), UN Environment Programme (UNEP).
  • Interviews with stakeholders: National Governments and local government.
  • Documents will include, cost-sharing agreement, project document, Steering Committee Meetings,minutes of consultations with participating countries, annual reports prepared by UNOSSC, and quarterly reports.
  • The final methodological approach including interview schedule, and data to be used in the evaluation should be clearly outlined in the inception report and be fully discussed and agreed between UNOSSC and the evaluator.

Evaluation Questions

The following questions will guide the End-of-Project evaluation:

  •  Relevance (Assess design and focus of the project
  • To what extent were project outputs clear?
  • To what extent was project designed as a triangular cooperation project?
  • Was the theory of change realistic and achievable?
  • Were the inputs and strategies realistic and adequate to achieve the results?
  • Was the triangular cooperation design appropriate?
  • Were the provisions of triangular cooperation followed, (Horizontality and mutual benefits)

 Effectiveness (Describe the management processes and their appropriateness in supporting delivery)

  • To what extent did the Project’s M&E mechanism contribute to meeting project results?
  • How effective were the strategies and tools used in the implementation of the project?
  • To what extent did the project achieve its overall objectives?
  • To what extent were the envisaged results (outputs) achieved?
  • What factors have contributed to achieving or non-achieving intended objectives and outputs of the project?
  • Was the project relevant to the identified needs?
  • Did the project spur South-South cooperation among participating countries?
  • How effective were the management and accountability structures of the project?

 Efficiency (of Project Implementation)

  • To what extent was the project management structure as outlined in the project document efficient in generating the expected results? Specifically did the actual or expected results (outputs and outcomes) justify the costs incurred? Were the resources effectively utilized?
  • Did project activities overlap and duplicate other similar interventions (funded nationally and/or by other donors? Are there more efficient ways and means of delivering more and better results with the available inputs? Could a different approach have produced better results?
  • How did the project financial management processes and procedures affect project implementation?

Sustainability

  • To what extent are the benefits of the projects likely to be sustained after the completion of this project?
  • How effective were the exit strategies, and approaches to phase out assistance provided by the project including contributing factors and constraints?
  • Describe key factors that will require attention to improve prospects of sustainability of Project outcomes and the potential for replication of the approach?
  • How were capacities strengthened at the individual and organizational level?
  • Describe the main lessons learnt that have emerged?
  • What are the recommendations for a possible phase 3?

Cross-cutting: Gender equality

  • To what extent have gender equality and the empowerment of women been addressed in the design, implementation and monitoring of the project?
  • To what extent has the project promoted positive changes in gender equality and the empowerment of women? Were there any unintended effects?

Expected Outputs and Deliverables

  • The End-of-Project Evaluation Inception Report (see Annex 1) should be prepared by the evaluator before going into the data collection exercise. It should highlight the evaluator’s understanding of what is being evaluated and why, showing how each evaluation question will be answered by way of: proposed methods, proposed sources of data and data collection procedures. It should also include a proposed schedule of tasks, activities and deliverables, designating a team member with the lead responsibility for each product if the evaluation team will include more than one person.
  • Evaluation debriefings. Immediately following an evaluation to share preliminary findings
  • A first draft Evaluation Report will be submitted to the UNOSSC Regional Coordinator per schedule under “submission deadlines” section, will be immediately reviewed by the UNOSSC Regional Office for Asia and Pacific and key stakeholders.
  • The Final Evaluation Report incorporating comments from the draft document will then be compiled it will be immediately reviewed and consultant will have a 1st opportunity to provide final touches.
  • The End-of-Project Evaluation Report (see Annex 2 following UNDP Evaluation Guidelines) will include:
  • Findings and conclusions in relation to issues identified under section 3 of this TOR;
  • Recommendations for further implementation; and,
  • Discussion of lessons learnt from the evaluation (as appropriate).

Institutional Arrangement

  • UNOSSC Regional Coordinator (Asia-Pacific) will serve as an Evaluation Manager for this evaluation. The evaluator will be under supervision of the UNOSSC Regional Coordinator (Asia-Pacific).
  • Duration of the Work
  • March and April 2021 within a timeframe of 32 working days.
  • Duty Station
  • Home- based with no travel. Due to the COVID-19 travel restrictions, consultant will not be able to travel to project sites.

COMPETENCIES

Competencies:

Corporate Competencies:

  • Demonstrates integrity by modelling the UN’s values and ethical standards;
  • Promotes the vision, mission, and strategic goals of UNOSSC;
  • Displays cultural, gender, religion, race, nationality and age sensitivity and adaptability;
  • Treats all people fairly without favouritism.

Technical Competencies:

  • Analytic capacity and demonstrated ability to process, analyse and synthesise complex, technical information;
  • Proven experience in the developing country context and working in different cultural settings.

Communication:

  • Communicate effectively in writing to a varied and broad audience in a simple and concise manner.

Professionalism:

  • Capable of working in a high-pressure environment with sharp and frequent deadlines, managing many tasks simultaneously;
  • Excellent analytical and organizational skills.

Teamwork:

  • Projects a positive image and is ready to take on a wide range of tasks;
  • Focuses on results for the client;
  • Welcomes constructive feedback.

REQUIRED SKILLS AND EXPERIENCE

Educational Qualifications

  • Master’s Degree or equivalent in International Relations, Social Sciences, Economics, Journalism or closely-related field.

Experience

  • Minimum 10 years of experience in development issues and especially on South-South cooperation and triangular cooperation issues/practices/projects
  • Minimum 10 years of experience in evaluation research and report and partnership with United Nations system international organization and national governments in developing countries especially in Cambodia and Indonesia with strong evaluation, research, communications and writing skills;
  • Ability to summarize complex information;
  • Experience in communication and developing communication products is essential;

Language requirements

  • Fluency in written and spoken English.

Source:https://jobs.undp.org/cj_view_job.cfm?cur_job_id=97164


Recommend your friend

Copyrights 2017. All rights reserved | Technology Partner: Indev Consultancy Pvt. Ltd