Afghanistan: Research and Evaluation Specialist, P3, Fixed-Term, Kabul/Afghanistan

Organization: UN Children’s Fund
Country: Afghanistan
Closing date: 18 May 2018

UNICEF works in some of the world’s toughest places, to reach the world’s most disadvantaged children. To save their lives. To defend their rights. To help them fulfill their potential.

Across 190 countries and territories, we work for every child, everywhere, every day, to build a better world for everyone.

And we never give up.

For every child, a fair chance

How can you make a difference?

The Specialist provides technical and operational support to the Social Policy, Research and Evaluation Manager and the Country Management Team (CMT) to facilitate the overall planning, design, and implementation of the country office Integrated Monitoring and Evaluation & Research Plan (IMERP) and is responsible for managing and monitoring the implementation of IMERP efforts within the country office, and where appropriate across offices, between agencies and with national and international stakeholders and collaborators.

The Specialist is responsible for contributing to the design and effective conduct and uptake of evaluations, social data monitoring, and research in accordance with UNICEF mission, guiding principles, standards, commitments, regulatory framework (including policies, procedures and guidance), as well as professional norms and standards.

The Research & Evaluation Specialist reports to the Section Manager for general guidance and direction.


Within the delegated authority and under the given organizational set-up, the incumbent may be assigned the primary, shared, or contributory accountabilities for all or part of the following areas of major duties and key end-results.

1. Integrated Monitoring, Evaluation & Research Plan (IMERP)

Ensure that the Country Office and national partners use a well-prioritized and realistic plan of research, monitoring and evaluation activities that will provide the most relevant and strategic information to manage the Country Programme toward achieving expected results and towards coping with potential and actual emergencies.

Duties & Tasks

  • Make professional contributions to and provide technical assistance for the planning and establishing the major evaluation and research objectives, priorities, and activities in UNICEF’s multi-year and annual IMERPs, in consultation with UNICEF sections, regional office as well as national child-rights and implementing partners.
  • Identify the Evaluation objectives, priorities, and activities required for effective CO and partner Emergency Preparedness and Response Plans,
  • In humanitarian response situations, within the first month, draft and recommend a simple humanitarian performance plan focused on evaluation to cover key performance information for the initial emergency response, working in close collaboration with the humanitarian clusters partners.
  • After the initial humanitarian response, support management of the medium-term response with a revised IMERP.

    2. Situation Assessment and Analysis

    Ensure that the Country Office and national partners have timely and up-to-date knowledge and evidence based on evaluations, studies and research to feed into Situation Analyses and assessments of the country on women and children.

    Duties & Tasks

  • In coordination with other stakeholders, support situation assessments and Analyses through knowledge and evidence based on evaluations, studies and research.
  • Support partners in the establishment of systems for evaluations, knowledge-base, and research that will feed into Situation Analysis, Common Country Assessment, Early Warning Monitoring Systems, and Mid-Term Reviews.
  • In humanitarian response situations, provide professional support for one or more rapid assessments (inter-agency or independently if necessary) to be carried out within the first 48-72 hours, working in close collaboration with Monitoring specialist and the humanitarian clusters partners.
  • Drawing on evaluations, studies and research and key program performance and management information, provide professional input to management reports, including relevant sections of the annual reports.
  • 3. Evaluation

    Ensure that UNICEF-supported evaluations are designed and implemented to established UN quality standards, and the results are disseminated in a timely fashion to stakeholders in order to improve programme performance and contribute to wider learning.

    Duties & Tasks

  • Support the office and partners in identifying priority evaluation topics in accordance with the coverage guidelines of the UNICEF Evaluation Policy, and in accordance with the commitments contained in UNICEF’s Strategic Plan and in the agreed country programme.
  • Support development of national policy or policies (e.g. by sector) on evaluation by public, civil, and private partners. Support country-led evaluations of policies and programmes and the consideration of the results by partners.
  • Technically support programme partners to formulate Terms of Reference and evaluation designs of high quality, when relevant drawing on the know-how of knowledge institutions, in compliance with the organization’s programme evaluation policies and guidelines.
  • Monitor and ensure the quality of the field work and data management during the implementation phase, and the quality of the analysis and ease of understanding during the report writing phase.
  • Disseminate evaluation findings and recommendations to the intended audiences in user-friendly methods. In particular, to ensure that effective participatory feedback is provided to community and civil society stakeholders.
  • Monitor and ensure that a management response to the findings and recommendations of the evaluation is completed, recorded, and followed up for implementation. Most specifically, ensure that evaluation recommendations are submitted to the Country Management Team and follow-up actions recorded in CMT minutes. Submit electronic copies of all evaluations to NYHQ via the Evaluation Data Base web portal, with full accompanying documentation.
  • 4. Research Management

    Ensure that UNICEF-supported research is designed and implemented according to established UNICEF policies and procedures, and the results are disseminated in a timely fashion to stakeholders in order to improve programme performance and contribute to wider learning.

    Duties & Tasks

  • Establish and facilitate research quality assure processes at the CO level in accordance with the UNICEF Policy on Research. Ensure that the Standard Operating Procedures outline the quality assurance process for research and that checklists, guidance and other tools are available to research project managers from all sectors.
  • Convene the CO internal Research Steering Committee.
  • Technically support UNICEF programme specialists and programme partners to formulate Terms of Reference for high quality research projects.
  • Review the Terms of Reference for upcoming research projects and drafts of research reports.
  • Assist with the peer review process of major research projects and coordinate feedback to Supervisor/CMT/stakeholders to ensure quality and compliance with the UNICEF Policy on Research and country office research priorities.
  • Assist with the recruitment and selection of appropriately qualified research consultants, ensuring that the selection process is in compliance with UNICEF standards for performance, accountability, transparency and ethics.
  • Assist research project managers from all sectors with the development of a multi-method communication plan to disseminate research findings to intended audiences via user-friendly methods.
  • As part of Country Office Reporting, upload completed research reports to the global Evaluation and Research Database to allow global sharing and final quality review.
  • Ensure all research follows the ethical principles and standards outlined in the UNICEF Procedure for Ethical Standards in Research, Evaluation and Data Collection and Analysis.
  • 5. Evaluation and Research Capacity Development

    Ensure that the evaluation capacities of Country Office staff and national partners – government and civil society – are strengthened enabling them to increasingly engage in quality programme and project evaluations for programme performance and evidence generation.

    Duties & Tasks

  • Support the building and strengthening of strategic partnerships through networking and advocacy with local/national governments, UN system agency partners, donors, NGOs, funding organization, research institutes, including universities, and the private sector to reinforce cooperation and/or pursue initiatives.
  • Ensure that sufficient systems and procedures are in place at the Country Office to enable an appropriate ethics review of all UNICEF-supported evidence activities (evaluation, research, studies) as per the UNICEF Procedure for Ethical Standards in Research, Evaluation and Data Collection and Analysis.
  • Implement capacity building initiatives, to enhance the competencies of a wide range of internal and external partners/stakeholders organizations to build their E&R policies, procedures, tools and systems. Encourage staff and partners to complete available e-modules on evidence activities and participate in workshops of research management, impact evaluation, uptake, ethics, etc.
  • Participate in strategic discussions, meetings and other international/national meetings and workshops. Exchange information and ideas to facilitate policy formulation, discussion and agenda setting on evaluation and research related issues.
  • Keep abreast, research, benchmark, introduce and implement best and cutting edge practices on evaluation and research planning and management. Institutionalize and disseminate best practices and lessons learned to maximize the use of E&R results to support improve programming and results delivery. Promote innovative approaches and good practices through advocacy and operational support/services.
  • Support the development of evaluation and research associations that foster access by individual professional evaluators/researchers to knowledge, skills development, and networking opportunities.
  • To qualify as an advocate for every child you will have…

  • An advanced university degree (Master’s or higher) inevaluation, social sciences, anthropology, planning development, or another relevant technical field. *A first University Degree in a relevant field combined with 2 additional years of professional experience may be accepted in lieu of an Advanced University Degree.
  • A minimum of five years of professional work experience in programme development and implementation including monitoring, research and evaluation activities.At least one instance of exposure to emergency programming, including preparedness planning. Active involvement in a humanitarian crisis response programme preferred.
  • Fluency in English is required. Knowledge of another official UN language (Arabic, Chinese, French, Russian or Spanish) or a local language is an asset.
  • For every Child, you demonstrate…

    UNICEF’s core values of Commitment, Diversity and Integrity and core competencies in Communication, Working with People and Drive for Results.

    The technical competencies required for this post are:

  • Specific Technical Knowledge & Competencies Required
  • Knowledge of research and evaluation methods and approaches
  • Professional technical knowledge/expertise in research and evaluation process management, follow-up on recommendations and dissemination of findings.
  • Emerging international good practice in research and evaluation partnerships.
  • b) Common Technical Knowledge Required

  • Professional technical knowledge/expertise in research, evaluations, demography, anthropological studies.
  • Professional technical knowledge/expertise in methodology of research and evaluation, including theories, standards and models, quantitative/qualitative/mixed methods, validity/reliability testing of data, data analysis and interpretation, and statistical inference methods.
  • Professional technical knowledge/expertise in applying research and evaluation standards, evaluation design, data analysis, and reporting.
  • Gender equality and diversity awareness
  • c) Technical Knowledge to be Acquired/Enhanced

  • Professional/technical knowledge/expertise in team management, coaching and training.
  • Mastery of UNICEF’s M&E policies and procedures.
  • Latest programme research and evaluation theory, methodology, technology and tools.
  • Understanding of UN Mission and system, current key UN topics; and International Code of Conduct.
  • Understanding of UNICEF Mission Statement and UNICEF Guiding Principles.
  • UNICEF strategic framework for partnerships and collaborative relationships.
  • View our competency framework at

    UNICEF is committed to diversity and inclusion within its workforce, and encourages all candidates, irrespective of gender, nationality, religious and ethnic backgrounds, including persons living with disabilities, to apply to become a part of the organization.


    Mobility is a condition of international professional employment with UNICEF and an underlying premise of the international civil service.

    Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted and advance to the next stage of the selection process.

    How to apply:

    UNICEF is committed to diversity and inclusion within its workforce, and encourages qualified female and male candidates from all national, religious and ethnic backgrounds, including persons living with disabilities, to apply to become a part of our organization. To apply, click on the following link

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