Job Opening

Posting Title: Consultancy on World Development Challenges Report
Department/Office: Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia
Duty Station: BEIRUT
Posting Period: 15 November 2021 - 28 November 2021
Job Opening Number: 21-Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia-168633-Consultant
Staffing Exercise N/A
United Nations Core Values: Integrity, Professionalism, Respect for Diversity
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Result of Service

The consultant will have to provide in English the required research tasks leading to this output to be delivered in a timely manner.

Work Location

Beirut

Expected duration

1 month

Duties and Responsibilities

Human development is a multi-faceted term often understood in various ways. Broadly, the capability approach to human development anchored in the work of Amartya Sen is centered around the people and the expansion of their freedoms, capabilities, choices and opportunities. It is centered around ameliorating people's living conditions to enable them to develop their full potential and lead lives they value. In assessing human development, two aspects could be distinguished1: (i) a foundational aspect that directly enhances people's abilities such as living a long and healthy life, acquiring knowledge, having a decent living standard. (ii) A contextual or operating aspect that ensures conducive conditions that enable people to prosper; or put differently, these conditions influence the functioning of capabilities- rather than being themselves capabilities. Such enablers include environmental sustainability, peace and absence of violence, strong institutions and participation in political and community life. For instance, a poor environment through pollution and poor air quality imposes a cost and slows down human progress as well documented in the 2011 and 2020 Human Development Reports (HDR)2. Conflicts likewise could have a detrimental impact on people's capabilities, especially those of poor communities and countries. On the other hand, good governance and strong institutional practices set the stage for the successful attainment of these capabilities.
In light of the above context, ESCWA is developing a report that makes the case for rethinking human development measurement using a hybrid quality-focused and extended analytical approach. It proposes to evaluate three broad challenges namely, quality of human development, environmental sustainability and governance. These challenges have far-reaching implications on development achievements, including the SDGs. The report is anchored to the human development approach but offers an analytical tool that is arguably better suited than the Human Development Index to evaluate and address current global development challenges. The aim is not only to better understand challenges in five areas of income, health, education, environmental sustainability and governance but ultimately to offer an analytical toolkit that could trigger policy dialogue to address these challenges whether at the global, regional or, most importantly, at the national level.
Accordingly, this report proposes a new global Development Challenges Index which measures shortfalls from desirable achievements in three areas: quality of basic human development (as represented in the three traditional components of the HDI); environmental sustainability; and governance.

The main objective of this consultancy is to perform a technical review of the draft of the World Development Challenges Report prepared by ESCWA team on the conceptual framework, methodology, structure of the report, and analysis of the results. The consultants' feedback will be integrated to enrich the report and validate results and policy recommendations.

Qualifications/special skills

Academic Qualifications: Master's degree in economics, statistics, or related fields is required. A PhD in economics is desirable.
Experience: 7 years of experience in extensive publication record on topics such as economic and social development, public policy, poverty, and inequality is required.
Language: Fluency in written and spoken English is required.

No Fee

THE UNITED NATIONS DOES NOT CHARGE A FEE AT ANY STAGE OF THE RECRUITMENT PROCESS (APPLICATION, INTERVIEW MEETING, PROCESSING, OR TRAINING). THE UNITED NATIONS DOES NOT CONCERN ITSELF WITH INFORMATION ON APPLICANTS’ BANK ACCOUNTS.

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