Job Opening

Posting Title: UNSDPF Evaluation Team Leader
Department/Office: Resident Coordinator System
Duty Station: THIMPHU
Posting Period: 13 May 2022 - 28 May 2022
Job Opening Number: 22-Resident Coordinator System-181424-Consultant
Staffing Exercise N/A
United Nations Core Values: Integrity, Professionalism, Respect for Diversity

Result of Service

The Evaluation Team Leader leads the entire evaluation process, working closely with all team members. He/she will conduct the evaluation process in a timely manner and communicate with the Evaluation Manager on a regular basis and highlight progress made/challenges encountered. The Evaluation Team Leader will be responsible for producing the inception report and the draft and final evaluation reports, ensuring quality of these deliverables.

Specific roles:
I. Providing local perspective in the inception report
II. Facilitate document review.
III. Coordinate closely with evaluation manager for in-country logistic support, arrangement of documents, interviews, and consultations
IV. Seek clearance required for evaluation and collect high quality data from field
V. Support data analysis and report writing.
VI. Support in preparing and making presentation of preliminary finding to key stakeholders and the evaluation technical committee.
VII. Support the international consultant during the drafting of the report discussing key findings, lessons learned, conclusion and recommendations. Also support the stakeholder consultation to gather feedback and finalize the report.
VIII. Will support the international consultant during the consultation with stakeholders and in the submission of the final report.

The Team should be built with due consideration to:
• Cultural and language balance;
• Gender balance;
• Coverage of relevant subject areas of work by UNCT member agencies;
• Coverage of key cross-cutting issues, including gender equality, human rights and environmental sustainability; and
• Collective knowledge of the national context in various areas of UN work

Work Location

Teleworking

Expected duration

45 working days over a six-month period from 20th June 2022- 31st Dec 2022

Duties and Responsibilities

Full Term of Reference of Evaluations UNSDPF Bhutan (2019-2023) including;
• Evaluation criteria and preliminary evaluation questions
• Evaluation approach, methodology, quality assurance, and assessment
• Evaluation process
• Workplan and indicative time schedule of deliverables
• Management of the evaluation
• Bibliography

Interested candidates can download the detailed TOR from this link : https://bhutan.un.org/en/181272-united-nations-sustainable-development-framework-unsdpf-evaluation-tors

Introduction

This United Nations Sustainable Development Framework (UNSDPF) articulates the collective vision of the UN system and the Government of Bhutan for 2019 – 2023. The overall goal of the United Nations’ support to Bhutan with the timeframe is to support “A Just, harmonious and sustainable Bhutan where no one is left behind”. In support of the Royal Government of Bhutan’s (RGoB) achievement of its 12th FYP and beyond, the UN’s strategic priorities outline to support the people of Bhutan by focusing first on those furthest behind, specifically the 14 Socio-Economic groups identified as being at risk of being left behind. The Government’s 12th FYP (2019-2023) was also formulated with both GNH and the SDGs as a guiding basis in its preparations, Bhutan’s development programmes continue to be highly aligned with the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development Goals.

An evaluation of the UNSDPF is commissioned by the United Nations Country Team (UNCT) in Bhutan in close partnership with the RGoB and will be conducted by a team of independent evaluators. The independent evaluation of the UNSDPF is a mandatory system-wide country-level evaluation that adheres to the norms and standards of the United Nations Evaluation Group (UNEG) and also conducted in line with the guidelines for the Evaluation of the United Nations Sustainable Development Cooperation Framework (UNSDCF), September 2021. The evaluation is a critical instrument to ensure the accountability of the development system for its collective contribution to a country’s SDG achievement. It supports learning and informs decisions regarding the design of subsequent UNSDCF cycles. It includes a focus on development results and the identification of internal and external gaps and overlaps, encompassing a critical appraisal of the Common Country Analysis (CCA) process, the theory of change, design and implementation, the application of the guiding principles, and the Funding Compact and Management Accountability Framework (MAF).

The evaluation terms of reference set out the details of the evaluation process, methodology, deliverables, and management arrangements, including quality assurance mechanisms. The country lead process will be a transparent and inclusive process with robust quality assurance. There will be technical support provided by the UN Development Coordination office (DCO) and United Nations Evaluation Development Group for Asia and Pacific (UNEDAP) to ensure independence, credibility, and utility of evaluation.

Country Context & UNSDPF Highlights

Country context
Bhutan is one of the smallest economies in the world, it is also one of the fastest growing economies, and is considered by the World Bank’s classification as a lower Middle-Income Country (LMIC). A combination of prudent fiscal and monetary policy, as well as robust investments in hydropower has largely facilitated its growth over the years. Bhutan’s progress in human development has also been significant, having achieved or surpassed targets in five of eight Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), and is ranked in the medium HDI category. As a testament to the tremendous socioeconomic progress made over the decades, Bhutan is expected to graduate from the UN’s Least Developed Countries (LDC) category in 2023, with the RGOB 12th FYP marked as the “the last mile to LDC graduation”. Bhutan during its first VNR exercise in 2018, presented the 12th FYP as its first major step towards implementing the SDGs and most indicators assessed on track. In July 2021, during the second VNR exercise given the significant impact of the pandemic on education, livelihoods, economy and revenue landscape, it is likely that progress of several related SDGs is “at risk” today i.e. SDGs 1, 4, 8, 10, 17. The theme of reporting was on transformational processes that build on past achievement and draw lessons from the COVID-19 pandemic—as Bhutan works to “build back better” while also moving ahead towards LDC graduation, the SDGs and GNH. The government with the partnership of UN also developed the “Dewa Platform”, an integrated dashboard to monitor GNH, SDGs and FYP progress. The VNR process also highlights that there is broad agreement on the need to strengthen awareness of the SDGs, and on a need for planners and implementers to be more conversant with the “language of the SDGs”.

COVID 19 impact on Bhutan is deep and far-reaching, like many other countries in the Global context. While GDP had grown from three percent in 2018 to 5.46 percent in 2019, and was projected to grow to 6.9 percent in 2020, growth projection decelerated to -6.1 percent by year-end with strict implementation of pandemic containment measures. A large number of people dependent on tourism and allied sectors were displaced, and many Bhutanese working overseas returned home. Overall unemployment reached 5 percent in 2020 as compared to 2.7 percent in 2019; and youth unemployment, a long-standing concern, has reached an all-time high of 22.6 percent as compared to 11.9 percent in 2019. Domestic violence and protection issues have reportedly increased with the COVID-19 pandemic. Issues of online safety, cyber security and the digital divide were highlighted, as education and public services went online. Concerns over food and nutrition security were amplified as weaknesses in value chain management and distribution became apparent. The health system’s capacity to deal with a prolonged pandemic is an additional concern—with epidemiological changes already placing pressure on the sustainability of free healthcare services.

Meanwhile, Bhutan remains highly vulnerable to climate change impacts and natural disasters, which pose serious threats to its nature-dependent livelihoods and hydropower and agriculture-based economy. As it maintains its carbon neutral status in the face of mounting pressure to accelerate economic growth, the additional burden of adaptation and mitigation entails huge costs. The Socio-Economic impact of Covid has brought about a new dimension of challenges to the country.

UNSDPF highlights

The UNSDPF also represents the UN’s commitment to advancing the Implementation approaches of UN Reform, Delivering as One (DaO) to drives joint and comprehensive UN work planning and monitoring for results, integrating the full range of UN national and international partners’ expertise and experience, facilitating the application of normative programming principles in alignment with national development priorities.

Participating in the Framework are 31 UN Agencies of which 9 are resident agencies: Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), International Trade Centre (ITC), United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), United Nation Capital Development Fund (UNCDF), United Nations Office of Drugs and Crime (UNODC), United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), World Food Program (WFP), World Health Organization (WHO), 22 Non-Resident Agencies: IOM, UNOPS, UNWTO, OCHA, ICAO, UNIDO, UNIC, IFAD, UNCTAD, UNAIDS, UNESCAP, UNDESA, UN Technology Bank, UNESCO, UNV, UN Habitat, ITU, WIPO, UNEP, UN Office of High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), UN OHRLLS, UN Women.

Based on which the UN aims to mobilize and invest an estimated USD 120 million to achieve results in four outcome areas, by 2023:

Outcome 1: The RGoB uses more reliable and timely data on people at risk of being left behind for evidence-based policy and decision-making.
Outcome 2: Vulnerable and unreached people* access and receive quality health, nutrition, protection, education, water, sanitation and hygiene services.
Outcome 3: RGoB institutions provide equal opportunities for all, and women and vulnerable groups hold leaders accountable; and
Outcome 4: Bhutan’s communities and its economy are more resilient to climate-induced and other disasters and biodiversity loss as well as economic vulnerability.
The four outcomes through its integrated programming and joint programming approach contributes to the implementation of the 2030 Agenda in Bhutan, building on Bhutan’s international human rights commitments and supporting the Governments 12th Five Year Plan. The government and UN agencies formulate and review the Joint annual workplans under these outcomes. The progress under the four outcome groups is monitored and reported at Joint (Government and UN agencies) review meetings held every six months. Furthermore, the annual progress is captured in the Annual Results Report and reported to the Country Programme Board annually.

The UNSDPF did not have a mid-year review conducted, since the development of Socio-Economic Response Plan of (SERP) was developed through a consultative process in Feb 2021 and few SERP indicator were also incorporated in the UNSDPF results reporting framework. UNICEF and WFP have conducted mid-term evaluation of their Strategic plan, and there are also small Programme and project evaluations reports which can be used for desk review.

The evaluation needs to take into consideration the following contextual factors that affected the UNSDPF implementation:
I. The need to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic from March 2020 affected the priorities and implementation of the UNSDPF. The government’s shift in priority to immediate response to COVID, which influenced the UN annual programming cycle in 2020 and 2021 to undergo 2 rounds of repurposing exercises and a shift in the timeline of planning and implementation.
II. With national restriction on trade and movement due to COVID, has delayed targeted deliverables of projects and programmes.
III. The changing development finance landscape, and its impact on resource mobilization for the UNCT.

Purpose, objectives, and scope of the evaluation
The primary purpose of the UNSDPF Evaluation is to:
I. Promote greater learning and operational improvement: The evaluation will provide important information and learning to strengthen programming, planning and decision making to improve coordination at the country level.
II. Support greater accountability of the United Nations Country Team (UNCT) to UNSDPF stakeholders: The process will provide evidence of results achieved and assess the effectiveness of the strategies and interventions used in the implementation of the UNSDPF and fix accountability to the UNCT.
III. Provide evidence to inform the design and coordination of the next UNSDCF (2024-2028). The evaluation process will provide the UN country team (UNCT) an opportunity to reflect on the way they have been supporting the country’s development process.

The objective of the evaluation includes:

a. To assess the contribution of the UNSDPF to national development results.
b. To provide recommendation to strengthen the ‘delivering as one’ approach.
c. To assess the level of ‘UN reform ‘integration in the implementation arrangement of the UN System in Bhutan.
d. To identify the area of cooperation where UN Bhutan continue to remain relevant to the National priorities and SDGs in the new UNSDCF.
e. To assess and provide actionable recommendations to further strengthen the existing operational structures and interagency tasks teams in the implementation of the UNSDPF.
f. Reach conclusions concerning UN’s contribution, in relation to the UN systems value-add to the country looking forward to the new UNSDCF.

In addition, the evaluation will assess the extent to which the UNSDPF priorities shifted due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the way the UN system in Bhutan adapted to the changed programming context to effectively and impact deliver as one within the context of the newly emerging priorities and environment. The UNSDPF evaluation is being conducted in the penultimate year of CF as per the UNEG guidelines.

Scope

The UNSDPF 2019-2023 evaluation will cover a period from 1st quarter of 2019 to the 1st quarter of 2022. The evaluation will cover all UN contributions to UNSDPF outcomes made through programmes, projects and activities supported by the UNCT and non-resident UN agencies, including activities implemented as part of global or regional programmes and projects. It should not seek to conduct a full evaluation of individual programme projects or activities of UNCT members, but rather synthesize and build on the agency programme and projects evaluations and other evaluative evidence.

The evaluation will be a comprehensive and strategic assessment of the UNSDPF’s /UN Bhutan’s contribution to the achievement of national priorities, the SDGs and the strategic relevance, effectiveness, efficiency, coherence, and sustainability of the UNSDPF. It should focus on the effectiveness of the UNSDPF operational structures including the governance structure and mechanisms, task teams and workplans. Also identify areas of impact which require collective strategic actions to create value and position the UN system in Bhutan as an impactful partner to the government. Emphasize on identifying the need to bring in support from new relevant UN agencies at the country level, in the government priority area of digitalization, youth, economy etc.

The evaluation will address how far results dealt with overall inequalities (focused on leaving no one behind principle, and building resilience to humanitarian emergencies), and in the application of the cross-cutting elements of the UNSDF (human rights, conflict sensitivity, youth, volunteerism, and gender equality and women’s empowerment, disability inclusion, environmental sustainability), as well as promoting innovative approaches, and deepening strategic partnerships.
The geographic coverage of the evaluation includes UN’s partners in all 20 districts have taken place. The evaluation will cover all levels of partnership and contributions of stakeholders to achievement of UNSDPF outcomes (government, community, CSO, private sector, etc.).

The evaluation will be used by the various stakeholders of the UNSDPF 2019-2023, including the UNCT, RGOB, donors, development partners and implementing partners. A detailed stakeholder mapping will be carried out by the evaluation team during the inception phase to inform the primary and secondary users of the evaluation results.

The inception phase of the evaluation will further define and narrow the scope of the evaluation to meet the stated objectives and ensure that the evaluation is feasible given the resources and time available. Also, the provinces and thematic areas to be covered during the evaluation would be explicitly detailed in the inception phase.

Qualifications/special skills

Skills: o Experience of leading evaluation team and engagement in UNDAF evaluation.
o Knowledge and experience working with a UN country team or any other UN agency
o Sound knowledge and experience of United Nations Evaluation Groups (UNEG) norms and standards.
o Effective and efficient communication skill (Written and Spoken)
Academic Qualifications: Advanced university level of education in evaluation or field(s) relevant to one or more UNSDPF evaluations areas of work. Where possible/suitable PhD level preferred for the Evaluation Team Leader
Experience: a. Minimum 10 years of proven experience in conducting evaluations of complex programmes and themes relevant to the UNSDPF;
b. Experience and background in gender equality/gender analysis and gender responsive and disability inclusive evaluations.
c. Good understanding of the SDGs, other relevant regional or global frameworks and their implications for development cooperation; Good understanding of multilateralism and the role of the UN System in development cooperation in the context of the country in question;
d. Understanding of UN Reform and its implementation implication at the country level;
e. Demonstrated analytical capacity, particularly in the case of the Team Leader, including on political economy and financing for development;
f. Sound knowledge of the country context and an in-depth understanding of at least one area of work of UNCT members; collectively, Evaluation Team members should broadly cover all areas of UNCT activity;
g. Demonstrated ability to write and communicate clearly in English.
h. No conflict of interest such as recent or expected employment by UNCT members or
implementing partners, private relationships with any UNCT members of staff or government counterparts or implementing partners; participation in the design, implementation or advising UNSDPF evaluations being evaluated, among others). Any potential conflict of interest should be declared by candidates during the application process.
Language: Demonstrated ability to write and communicate clearly in English.

Additional Information

Only the selected candidate will be contacted.

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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