Specialists in Project Evaluation (Retainers), Multiple positions

Organization: UNOPS
Closing date: 22 Oct 2017

Myanmar is one of UNOPS leading offices in Asia, acting as fund manager for three of the largest development programmes in the country, namely the Three Millennium Development Goal Fund (3MDG), the Livelihood and Food Security Trust Fund (LIFT) and the Joint Peace Fund (JPF). In addition, UNOPS Myanmar is Principal Recipient for the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria in Myanmar and Cambodia, and for the Global Fund¹s Regional Artemisinin-resistance Initiative targeting drug resistant malaria in the Greater Mekong sub-region. UNOPS provides procurement, infrastructure and project management services to a wide range of organizations in the country, including the Government of Myanmar, international development partners, other UN agencies, NGOs and INGOs. UNOPS Myanmar plays a critical role in ensuring that the quality of services provided to its partners meets stringent requirements of speed, efficiency and cost effectiveness.

Background Information – Job-specific

The Livelihoods and Food Security Trust Fund (LIFT) is a multi-donor fund established in 2010 to address food insecurity and income poverty in Myanmar. LIFT has received funding from 14 donors – the United Kingdom, the European Union, Australia, Switzerland, Denmark, the United States, the Netherlands, Sweden, France, Luxembourg, Italy, New Zealand, Ireland and Mitsubishi Corporation. The United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS) is the Fund Manager to administer the funds and provide monitoring and oversight.

The overall goal of LIFT is to sustainably reduce the number of people living in poverty and hunger in Myanmar. LIFT’s purpose is to strengthen the resilience and sustainable livelihoods of poor people in Myanmar. LIFT’s purpose-level outcomes are increased income, decreased vulnerability, improved nutrition, and pro-poor policy developments.

LIFT works with implementing partners that include international and national non-government organisations, United Nations agencies, the Government of Myanmar, private sector organisations, academic and research institutions.

LIFT is active in the four main agro-ecological zones of Myanmar: the Ayeyarwady Delta, the Rakhine State, the central dry zone (including Mandalay, Magway and the southern Sagaing region), and the upland areas of Chin, Kachin, Kayah, Kayin and Shan States and Tanintharyi Region.

So far, LIFT has reached more than 7.2 million people, or roughly 20 per cent of Myanmar’s population; and is active in almost half the country’s townships. LIFT is funding projects through to June 2019. For more details visit www.lift-fund.org.

LIFT’s Monitoring and Evaluation for Learning and Accountability

In early 2015, LIFT redesigned its approach and methods for monitoring and evaluation in order to better fit LIFT’s revised strategy, to increase the accuracy and relevance of M&E results, and to provide a more intentional focus on learning. This change in focus resulted in the development of a new Monitoring and Evaluation for Accountability and Learning (MEAL) framework. The aim is to increase the capacity of LIFT and its partners to generate and use robust evidence both to measure and improve performance and to influence rural development policy and practice in Myanmar. The development and implementation of this framework entails a significant upgrading of M&E systems, capacities and practices within the FMO, programmes and amongst implementing partners. The different components of LIFT’s MEAL framework are implemented by FMO’s Programme Unit and/or implementing partners staff.

Currently, LIFT has over 60 grant agreements with implementing partners. Implementing partners include international and national NGOs, research institutes, Government partners and UN agencies. In the MEAL Framework, mid-term and final evaluations are important tools in the project cycle to monitor, evaluate and learn from the various outputs and outcomes.

LIFT is now looking to hire evaluators on a retainer basis to assist Mid-Term Evaluation and Final Evaluation of these projects.

Functional competencies

The main objective of the assignment is to carry out mid-term and final evaluations of LIFT projects of the five main programmes 1) Delta, 2) Dry Zone, 3) Rakhine 4) Upland and 5) Finance Inclusion. The evaluations will be carried out by a mix of methods, mostly qualitative, and will included desk review (home based) to visiting key informants, beneficiaries and project staff in the field. An evaluation can take between 2-3 weeks, depending on the complexity and the specifics of the projects.

The specific objectives of an evaluation include:

Address the LIFT level evaluation questions concerning the following criteria, in relation to the project’s overall approach and its individual components where appropriate:

  • Relevance: The extent to which the project and its components are suited to: (1) the priorities and needs of the target beneficiaries; (2) LIFT’s policies and objectives; (3) the Myanmar policy and development context and (4) Programmes’ strategies.
  • Effectiveness: A measure of the extent to which the project is attaining its expected results and targets, based on the project’s Theory of Change (ToC), measurement framework and business plan/model.
  • Efficiency: A measure of the extent to which the project has delivered or is posed to deliver value for money, in terms of costs and major benefits.
  • Sustainability: An assessment of the economic/financial, social and environmental sustainability, of a project or business. Particular focus in on whether the benefits of the project are likely to continue after donor funding has been withdrawn.
  • Gender equality: The extent to which project design and implementation has considered gender related differences in the roles, responsibilities and needs of the target beneficiaries and enabled greater women’s empowerment.

Address specific questions mainly related to the process, how and in what ways the project is working, what are the systems in place, what is the quality of implemented activities, the engagement of different stakeholders, appropriateness of adopted methodologies.

Distil lessons and good practices, as well as identify barriers to effective implementation, in order to provide meaningful and feasible recommendations for improving the project in its remaining time. These lessons and good practices should aim to be of value for the implementing partners, but also to other similar projects and stakeholders. Generic lessons should be avoided in favor of rich and context specific learning.

Monitoring and progress controls

Once a consultant is contracted, he/she will be contacted to conduct a specific project mid term or final evaluation, based on his/her expertise. The deliverables and number of days will be agreed through a so-called task note which will provide the details of the planned evaluation.

The retainers will work in close coordination with the LIFT programme managers with the supervision of the programme coordinator and will be expected to report in a timely fashion on the assigned task notes.

Deliverables

Outputs and reporting requirements will be detailed in Task Notes specific to each assignment. Task Notes will include:

  • Administration and logistics arrangements
  • Indicative work plan
  • Travel requirements (e.g. field trips to project sites)
  • Deliverables: this usually includes a debriefing to the partners and LIFT staff at the end of the field visit, and a final report on the findings.

Education/Experience/Language requirements

Education

  • A Master’s Degree in Social Sciences, Business Administration, Research and Statistics, Information Technology, Agricultural Sciences, Political Sciences, Development Studies, Rural Finance & Economics, Nutrition or related field is required.
  • Additional two years of similar experience with a Bachelor’s Degree is considered as equivalent.

Work Experience

  • The Consultant is required to have a minimum of 7 years’ experience in project evaluation related to one or more of the subject areas as listed below. Please indicate on your application letter for which areas you would want to be considered (refer to below, “other considerations”):
    • Agriculture, including the following; livestock production systems, veterinary policies, livestock trade policies, conservation agriculture, agricultural advisory services, mechanization, seed production, aquaculture, climate smart agriculture.
    • Financial inclusion and micro-finance, including rural economy, rural small scale entrepreneur,
    • Labour & migration
    • Social protection,
    • TVET and capacity building
    • Nutrition
    • Conflict and post-conflict
    • Climate change adaptation
    • Gender
  • Good knowledge of working with stakeholders such as local authorities, national government, civil society and the interaction among stakeholders with dialogue, advocacy, governance would be an asset
  • In-depth understanding of the Myanmar context is an advantage;
  • Experience of working in Myanmar and/or South East Asia is an advantage;
  • Knowledge of robust M&E systems according to latest techniques, measures and standards is preferred;
  • Experience in design and execution of field surveys in rural socio-economics studies with both quantitative and qualitative methods is an asset;
  • Experience in data management, processing, statistics and analysis is desirable;
  • Experience in designing, drafting, editing, presenting and disseminating knowledge products is preferred;
  • A minimum of 5 years living and working in less developed countries is preferable.**Language**

  • Fluency in both written and spoken English is essential.

Competencies

Develops and implements sustainable business strategies, thinks long term and externally in order to positively shape the organization. Anticipates and perceives the impact and implications of future decisions and activities on other parts of the organization.

Treats all individuals with respect; responds sensitively to differences and encourages others to do the same. Upholds organizational and ethical norms. Maintains high standards of trustworthiness. Role model for diversity and inclusion.

Acts as a positive role model contributing to the team spirit. Collaborates and supports the development of others. For people managers only: Acts as positive leadership role model, motivates, directs and inspires others to succeed, utilizing appropriate leadership styles.

Demonstrates understanding of the impact of own role on all partners and always puts the end beneficiary first. Builds and maintains strong external relationships and is a competent partner for others (if relevant to the role).

Efficiently establishes an appropriate course of action for self and/or others to accomplish a goal. Actions lead to total task accomplishment through concern for quality in all areas. Sees opportunities and takes the initiative to act on them. Understands that responsible use of resources maximizes our impact on our beneficiaries.

Open to change and flexible in a fast paced environment. Effectively adapts own approach to suit changing circumstances or requirements. Reflects on experiences and modifies own behavior. Performance is consistent, even under pressure. Always pursues continuous improvements.

Evaluates data and courses of action to reach logical, pragmatic decisions. Takes an unbiased, rational approach with calculated risks. Applies innovation and creativity to problem-solving.

Expresses ideas or facts in a clear, concise and open manner. Communication indicates a consideration for the feelings and needs of others. Actively listens and proactively shares knowledge. Handles conflict effectively, by overcoming differences of opinion and finding common ground.

Contract type, level and duration

Contracting approach

Each position will be contracted for up to 100 days per calendar year, extendable until June 2019 upon satisfactory services. There will be no guarantee of any number of days work under the contract. Contract type: International Individual Contractor Agreement
Contract level: IICA 3
Contract duration: Until June 2019 – Retainer not exceeding 100 days per calendar year

For more details about the ICA contractual modality, please follow this link:
https://www.unops.org/english/Opportunities/job-opportunities/what-we-offer/Pages/Individual-Contractor-Agreements.aspx

Additional Considerations

  • Please note that the closing date is midnight Copenhagen time
  • Applications received after the closing date will not be considered.
  • Only those candidates that are short-listed for interviews will be notified.
  • Qualified female candidates are strongly encouraged to apply.
  • For staff positions only, UNOPS reserves the right to appoint a candidate at a lower level than the advertised level of the post
  • The incumbent is responsible to abide by security policies, administrative instructions, plans and procedures of the UN Security Management System and that of UNOPS.

*It is the policy of UNOPS to conduct background checks on all potential recruits/interns.
Recruitment/internship in UNOPS is contingent on the results of such checks. *

*Applicants are also requested to: Submit a letter of motivation and a CV specifying experience and skills in relation to the subject areas under 6b.

  • Include the names and contact details of three recent, professional referees.
  • apply to one or more thematic proposed
  • Indicate their daily fee expectations in USD; and
  • This is a home-based contract with at least 30% of mission travel needed. Reimbursement of travel and payment of Daily Subsistence Allowance will be paid according to UN rules and regulations.

Background Information – UNOPS

UNOPS supports the successful implementation of its partners’ peacebuilding, humanitarian and development projects around the world. Our mission is to serve people in need by expanding the ability of the United Nations, governments and other partners to manage projects, infrastructure and procurement in a sustainable and efficient manner.

Working in some of the world’s most challenging environments, our vision is to advance sustainable implementation practices, always satisfying or surpassing our partners’ expectations.

With over 7,000 personnel spread across 80 countries, UNOPS offers its partners the logistical, technical and management knowledge they need, wherever they need it.

A flexible structure and global reach means that we can quickly respond to our partners’ needs, while offering the benefits of economies of scale.

How to apply:

https://jobs.unops.org/pages/viewvacancy/VADetails.aspx?id=13267

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