Consultant – Project End Evaluation at the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)



  2021-01-18
  Prefer not to state

The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) is the United Nations’ global development network. It advocates for change and connects countries to knowledge, experience and resources to help people build a better life for themselves. It provides expert advice, training and grants support to developing countries, with increasing emphasis on assistance to the least developed countries. It promotes technical and investment cooperation among nations.

Headquartered in New York City, the status of UNDP is that of an executive board within the United Nations General Assembly. The UNDP is funded entirely by voluntary contributions from UN member states. The organization operates in 177 countries, where it works with local governments to meet development challenges and develop local capacity.

We are recruiting to fill the position below:

Job Title: Consultant for Project End Evaluation: REDD+ Investment Programme in Cross River State, Nigeria

Location: Calabar, Cross River
Additional Category: Climate & Disaster Resilience
Type of Contract: Individual Contract
Post Level: International Consultant
Languages Required: English
Starting Date : 01-Feb-2021 (date when the selected candidate is expected to start)
Duration of Initial Contract: 10 Working Days
Expected Duration of Assignment: 10 Working Days

Background
Cross River State (CRS) is an integral part of Nigeria’s efforts to reduce deforestation and forest degradation (REDD+). The State holds over 50% of Nigeria’s remaining pristine forests covering over 640,000ha. This is however being lost at a high rate that averages at 15,000 ha per annum. In a drive to accelerate action to reduce the forest loss, CRS sought financial support through the Governors’ Climate and Forest Task Force (GCFTF) in order to: a) strengthen the capacity within key government agencies to address REDD+ through the requisite enabling conditions; 2) enhance coordination between local, state and national governments; 3) trigger incentives, including those of a fiscal nature to engender behavioural change to reduce deforestation; and 4) promote public-private-partnerships to support REDD+ implementation.

UNDP provides leadership and technical support to Nigeria to deliver on its Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) and green growth strategy through interventions in the forest sector. UNDP has provided a range of specialized technical services that include leadership on REDD+ programme development processes to support Nigeria’s goal to develop CRS as pilot State for a nested approach to implementation of REDD+. A process was carried out to achieve intense institutional, strategy-building and demonstration activities in Cross River State. The resultant CRS REDD+ strategy laid a solid foundation for the State to transition from REDD+ readiness to implementation. The financial support of the GCFTF was therefore used to implement a project titled “Implementation of REDD+ in Cross River State”, with the aim to develop a roadmap of actions and to mobilise resources for the state to implement its REDD+ strategy. Project implementation commenced in September 2019 and will end in March 2021.

The project has three main activity as follows:

  • Support the development of an investment programme to be submitted to the Green Climate Fund (GCF) to kick start the implementation of the CRS Strategy;
  • Enable the development of a REDD+ Investment Plan for operationalising the CRS REDD+ strategy and for enabling key sectors to align their policies and investments to REDD+; and
  • Enhance the engagement of stakeholders, particularly private sector actors working on commodity value chains linked to REDD+.Purposes of the Evaluation

The project has been implemented since 2019. The objective of the project is to enable Cross River State to develop a REDD+ investment programme that would put the State on course to fully implement strategies and activities to reduce deforestation and forest degradation. This evaluation is to be conducted at the end of the project and will focus on the entire implementation period.

The overall purpose of the evaluation is to assess the processes and achievements made and to draw lessons that will be reported to UNDP, the donor of the project. More specifically, the evaluation is intended to:

  • Verify the project reports and achievements independently.
  • Compile diverse good practices in the work field during the project.
  • Highlight the learning outcomes, especially those related to good practices, lessons learned related to gender equality and social inclusion, and jurisdictions of low emissions development.

Duties and Responsibilities

The Evaluation Focus areas and Questions
The following focus areas and key questions will guide the end project evaluation:

  • An assessment of the achieved results in comparison with the final report. This may include the following:
    • Critical assessment of the project’s achievements (compared to objectives and indicators)
    • Critical assessment of the project’s contributions to transversal topics (public policies, safeguards implementation, communication, knowledge management, etc.)
    • Critical assessment of the project’s management performance, including financial management, reporting (efficiency)
    • Critical assessment of the project’s risk management strategy and implementation thereof
  • Assessment of the project’s ability to build government capacities (at the state/local government level), transfer capacities (technical, strategic, etc.) to government partners (ownership, sustainability)
  • Assessment of the project’s ability to effectively implement gender-responsive actions and ensure full and active participation of women and gender-responsive results (e.g. gender incorporated into strategies and business plans)
  • Assessment of the project’s ability to effectively build and implement robust multi-stakeholder and multi-sectoral processes
  • Description / assessment on lessons learned
  • Description / assessment on best practices

Relevance – Assess design and focus of the project:

  • To what extent did the project achieve its overall objectives?
  • What and how much progress has been made towards achieving the overall outputs and outcomes of the project to deliver a jurisdictional REDD+ Investment Plan and GCF Proposal in CRS (including contributing factors and constraints)?
  • To what extent were the results (impacts, outcomes, and outputs) achieved?
  • Were the inputs and strategies identified, and were they realistic, appropriate, and adequate to achieve the results?
  • Was the project relevant to the identified needs?

Effectiveness – Describe the management processes and their appropriateness in supporting deliverables:

  • Was the project effective in delivering desired/planned results?
  • How effective were the strategies and tools used in the implementation of the project?
  • How effective has the project been in responding to the needs of the beneficiaries?
  • What are the future intervention strategies and issues?

Efficiency – Of Project Implementation:

  • Was the process of achieving results efficient? Specifically did the actual or expected results (outputs and outcomes) justify the costs incurred? Were the resources effectively utilized?
  • Are there more efficient ways and means of delivering more and better results (outputs and outcomes) with the available inputs?
  • Could a different approach have produced better results?
  • How was the project’s collaboration with UNDP, Ministry of Climate Change and Forestry, the Forestry Commission in CRS, National REDD+ Secretariat in the Federal Ministry of Environment?
  • How efficient were the management and accountability structures of the project?

Sustainability:

  • To what extent are the benefits of the projects likely to be sustained after the completion of this project?
  • What is the likelihood of continuation and sustainability of project outcomes and benefits after completion of the 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 in order to improve prospects of sustainability of project outcomes and the potential for replication of the approach?
  • How the capacities were strengthened at the individual and organizational level (including contributing factors and constraints)?
  • Describe the main lessons that have emerged?
  • What are the recommendations for similar support in the future?

Methodology for Evaluation:

  • The independent evaluation will comply with evaluation norms and standards and follow ethical safeguards which adhere to the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) evaluation norms and standards. The evaluation is an independent evaluation and the final methodology and evaluation questions will be determined by the evaluator in consultation with the Nigeria Country Office of UNDP.
  • The evaluation will apply a mixed-methods approach, engaging with key stakeholders of the project at all levels. To collect the data for analysis, the evaluation will make use of the techniques listed below (but not limit to):
    • Desk study and review of all relevant project documentation including project documents, annual work-plans, project progress reports, annual project reports among others;
    • Interviews with relevant key informants.

Key informants:

  • Representatives from CRS Ministry of Climate Change and Forestry and its partners.
  • Representatives from government:
  • Department of Forestry in the Federal Ministry of Environment
  • CRS and national REDD+ secretariats
  • Forest communities in CRS
  • Representatives from UNDP and GCFTF (donor).

The data and information should be collected and analyzed with appropriate gender disaggregation. The evaluator may adapt the methodology, but any changes should be agreed between the UNDP Country Office and the evaluator.

Deliverables
The Final Report:

The content and structure of the final analytical report with findings, recommendations and lessons learned covering the scope of the evaluation should include the following:

  • Executive summary (1-2 pages)
  • Introduction (1 page)
  • Description of the evaluation methodology (3 pages)
  • Situational analysis with regard to the outcome, outputs, and partnership strategy (3 pages)
  • Analysis of opportunities to provide guidance for future projects and programming (2-3 pages)
  • Key findings, including best practices and lessons learned (4-5 pages)
  • Conclusions and recommendations (3-4 pages)
  • Appendices: charts, terms of reference, field visits, people interviewed, documents reviewed

Competencies

  • Demonstrates integrity by modelling the UN’s values and ethical standards
  • Promotes the vision, mission, and strategic goals of UNDP
  • Displays cultural, gender, religion, race, nationality and age sensitivity and adaptability
  • Ability to understand and interpret governance issues and complex development situations;
  • Good communication skills, written and oral;
  • Ability to motivate staff and work well with others;
  • Ability to plan and priorities, and to work under pressure;
  • Excellent negotiation and diplomatic skills;
  • Treats all people fairly without favouritism
  • Ability to work with a multi-cultural and diverse team
  • Ability to produce high quality research work under pressure of tight schedules and timelines.
  • Proven experience in interacting with senior government and donor counterparts
  • Proven programme design experience

Application Process
To simplify the evaluation process and obtain maximum comparability, interested evaluators/candidates are requested to submit a proposal in the manner and format described below:

Executive Summary:

  • An understanding of the issues at stake in relation to the work to be performed and the ability to perform the work within the time frame provided.

Professional Experience:

  • An explanation of the experience and qualifications with particular respect to M&E aspects.

Methodology:

  • A description of the methodology and proposed tools for undertaking the project evaluation within the allocated time and budget and the use of technology and communication processes used to discuss the issues with management.

Fees:

  • A financial offer including of a detailed budget in columns (fees, other costs). This should be provided in costs per day for a 10-day assignment over the period of one month.

Additional Information:

  • Any additional information, not specifically requested, but would be deemed useful in supporting the evaluation proposal.

Required Expertise and Qualifications
The evaluator shall have the following expertise and qualification:

  • Advanced degree in Statistics, Social Science, Development, or relevant field OR equivalent professional experience. Master’s degree in relevant fields with professional training in M&E preferred.
  • Significant experience with qualitative and quantitative data collection and analysis methods, including tracking outcome indicators in the nature and climate sector.
  • Previous experience engaging with national and subnational governments, local NGOs and INGOs within the area of monitoring, evaluation, learning or knowledge management
  • Extensive expertise, knowledge, and experience in the field of jurisdictional REDD+ strategies and approaches, and low emission development
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills in English.
  • Experience in UNDP mandate, policy, procedures, and preparation of annual results reports would be an advantage.

Deadline: 22nd January, 2021. (Midnight New York, USA)

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