Consultant (Evidence and Evaluation)

Kathmandu | Nepal

If you are a committed, creative professional and are passionate about making a lasting difference for children, the world's leading children's rights organization would like to hear from you.

For 70 years, UNICEF has been working on the ground in 190 countries and territories to promote children's survival, protection and development. The world's largest provider of vaccines for developing countries, UNICEF supports child health and nutrition, good water and sanitation, quality basic education for all boys and girls, and the protection of children from violence, exploitation, and AIDS. UNICEF is funded entirely by the voluntary contributions of individuals, businesses, foundations and governments.

Background/Context of the Consultancy:**

UNICEF is committed to the central role of evidence generation, including through research and evaluation, in the context of results-based management as well as for advocacy purposes. It continuously seeks to strengthen the evidence function with a view to supporting evidence-based programming and policy-making. While furthering accountability towards governments, donors and other partners, rigorous evidence can yield lessons that will further enhance UNICEF's contribution to development.In accordance with UNICEF's decentralized structure, most evidence-generation activities, including research and evaluations, are conducted at the country office level. Important challenges include strategic coverage and coherence, as well as ensuring that evidence quality standards are consistently met. UNICEF is giving increasing importance to systematic review and synthesis of the results from evidence-generation activities, and seeks to ensure uptake of lessons and recommendations, including – in the case of evaluation – through the formal management response process. UNICEF has also given considerable attention to promoting capacity development for research and evaluation, both internally (which will help to improve evidence quality and utilization) and externally among UNICEF's partners, especially governments and other national partners. A long-term aim is to ensure that sufficient national capacity exists to meet the expectations set out in the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) for country-led development and country-led evaluation.

Assignment Tasks:**

Under the overall supervision of the Regional Director/Regional Evaluation Adviser, the consultant, in close liaison with the Regional Evaluation Officer, will be responsible for the completion of the following tasks:

Development of an Evidence Approach for South Asia

  • Review the current status of evidence-generation practices across ROSA and country offices, based on (i) current Integrated Monitoring, Evaluation and Research Plans (IMERPs) and PRIME (the online planning application for research, evaluation and studies), as well as on direct (Skype) consultations.
  • Against this background, and taking into account any recent or evolving global UNICEF guidance (including the UNICEF Research Policy; the Taxonomy for Research, Evaluation and Studies; and the South Asia Knowledge Management Approach), propose an Evidence Approach for South Asia, along with a related list of commitments – focusing on defining and upholding quality standards, as well as uptake of evidence.
  • Liaise with country office focal points in fine-tuning the draft Evidence Approach and proposed commitments;
  • Participate in the presentation of the draft Approach and commitments to senior regional UNICEF management, and finalize the Approach accordingly.
  • Revise or develop a range of checklists and proposed Standard Operating Procedure templates for use by country offices and ROSA.

Revision of the South Asia Regional Evaluation Strategy

  • Review the current status of evaluation practices across ROSA and country offices, based on ongoing monitoring data, as well as on direct (Skype) consultations.
  • Against this background, and taking into account any recent or evolving global UNICEF, UNEG and UNDG guidance, propose amendments to the Regional Evaluation Strategy and associated list of commitments.
  • Liaise with country office focal points in fine-tuning the draft Strategy and proposed commitments;
  • Participate in the presentation of the draft Strategy and commitments to senior regional UNICEF management, and finalize the Strategy accordingly.
  • Revise or develop a range of checklists and proposed Standard Operating Procedure templates for use by country offices and ROSA

Management of the CFSS and CCDRR Regional Evaluations

  • In consultation with ROSA Emergency section, finalize the terms of reference for this CCDRR evaluation.
  • Develop and put in place a quality assurance process for both evaluations.
  • Advertise and manage the recruitment of the evaluation teams in charge of the evaluations.
  • Ensure the evaluation teams have access to the information they need for designing the evaluation. In particular, the consultant will ensure a good liaison of the evaluation teams with the evaluations' ROSA and country focal points, and facilitate the access to documentation, i.e. programme and project documents and results frameworks, monitoring and financial reports, evaluations, as well as key project outputs, and policy or strategy documents relating to specific initiatives.
  • Support the evaluation teams with the preparation of inception visits to selected countries and phone calls with particular key informants.
  • Play a key quality assurance role during the preparation of the evaluations' inception reports. Ensure that the draft inception reports submitted for review by the internal and external reviewers meet quality standards, and that the final design documents take into account all agreed comments contained in the audit trails.
  • Support the evaluation teams in ensuring that data collection missions are properly coordinated and prepared, and that country offices and national-level counterparts are properly appraised of the purpose of the visits.
  • Ensure the evaluation teams develop and systematically follow clear plans and guidelines associated with the training of data collectors and the actual field data collection process.
  • Ensure the data analysis phases follow the standards related to quantitative and qualitative analysis and ensure the conclusions and recommendations of the final reports are firmly based on evidence and sound analysis.
  • Conduct preliminary quality scans of draft evaluation reports, and engage with evaluation teams accordingly, prior to their submission to various internal and external reviewers.
  • Ensure optimal participation by key stakeholders in the various review stages, and coordinate the review of the inception report and various iterations of the draft report with primary stakeholders, internal reference groups, external advisory panels, and other external review bodies. Reviews will need to be managed within specific and agreed timelines. Generate audit trails for all comments, work with evaluation teams to ensure that all comments are addressed, and disseminate audit trail responses to ensure transparency and accountability.
  • Ensure the reviewers provide coherent feedback to the evaluation teams within agreed timelines. Ensure all the comments received will be responded to and included in the final reports when applicable.

Expected Deliverables:**

  1. Revised draft Regional Evaluation Strategy, including revised commitments;
  2. Revised checklists to assess the evaluability of programmes or projects, as well as the quality of evaluation terms of reference, inception reports and draft final reports;
  3. A proposed draft Regional Evidence Approach, including specific commitments and standards.
  4. Proposed checklists and standard operating procedures for evidence generation and uptake.
  5. Completed recruitment of the evaluation teams for the CFSS and CCDRR evaluations.
  6. Developed quality assurance processes for the CFSS and CCDRR evaluations.
  7. Comprehensive audit trail report for the CCFSS evaluation inception report.
  8. Comprehensive audit trail report for the CCDRR evaluation inception report.
  9. Summary report on emerging findings from the CFSS evaluation.
  10. Summary report on emerging findings from the CCDRR evaluation.
  11. Comprehensive audit trail report for the CFSS evaluation draft final report.
  12. Comprehensive audit trail report for the CCDRR evaluation draft final report.

Duration of the Consultancy:**

10 months from 2 January - 31 October 2017

Working Condition:**

The Consultant should be based in Kathmandu. UNICEF will not provide office facilities or a computer/laptop. The consultant will be expected to have access to up-to-date Microsoft Office software, as well as Internet access to conduct Skype conversations. S/he should be expected to be available for discussions in the UNICEF ROSA office on a regular basis, as agreed in advance.

Qualifications of Successful Candidate:**

  • Advanced degree in economics or related social science required.
  • Minimum of 8 years relevant work experience required.
  • Experience in development evaluation and research required.
  • Familiarity with results-based management principles and tools an asset.
  • Prior work experience with UNICEF or another UN agency would be an advantage
  • Fluency in written and spoken English required.

Competencies of Successful Candidate:**

Core Competencies: Communication, Working with people, Drive for Results

Functional Competencies: Formulating strategies and concept, Analyzing, Relating and networking, Deciding and initiating action, Applying technical expertise.

To view the vacancy and apply, please click on the below link:

http://www.unicef.org/about/employ/?job=501568

Please indicate your ability, availability and daily/monthly rate (in US$) to undertake the terms of reference above (including travel and daily subsistence allowance, if applicable). Applications submitted without a daily/monthly rate will not be considered.

Before applying, please make sure that you have read the requirements for the position and that you qualify.
Applications from non-qualifying applicants will most likely be discarded by the recruiting manager.
Apply
  • Organization: UNICEF
  • Location: Kathmandu | Nepal
  • Grade: Mid/Senior
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Accounting (Audit, Controlling)
    • Monitoring and Evaluation
  • Closing Date: 2016-12-05

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