Job Opening

Posting Title: Consultant on the development of an E-Learning Course on Impact-Based Forecasting for Small Island Developing States, focus on the Caribbean Region
Department/Office: United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction
Duty Station: PANAMA CITY
Posting Period: 24 June 2022 - 04 July 2022
Job Opening Number: 22-United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction-184472-Individual Contractor
Staffing Exercise N/A
United Nations Core Values: Integrity, Professionalism, Respect for Diversity

Result of Service

- Reports (3) of the Steering Scientific Committee meetings,

- E-learning MOOC on Impact-Based Forecasting, including training material,

- Report of the outcomes of the promotion Webinar.

- Report of the outcomes of the MOOC..

Work Location

Home based

Expected duration

5 months

Duties and Responsibilities

Created in December 1999, the United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNDRR) is the designated focal point in the United Nations system for the coordination of disaster reduction and to ensure synergies among the disaster reduction activities of the United Nations and regional organizations and activities in socio-economic and humanitarian fields. Led by the United Nations Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Disaster Risk Reduction, UNDRR has around 100 staff located in its HQ in Geneva, Switzerland, and 5 regional offices and other field presences.

Specifically, UNDRR coordinates international efforts in disaster risk reduction, and guides, monitors and reports on the progress of the implementation of the international strategy for disaster reduction, now the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction, 2015-2030; campaigns to create global awareness of disaster risk reduction benefits and empower people to reduce their vulnerability to hazards; advocates for greater investments in disaster risk reduction to protect people's lives and assets, and for increased and informed participation of men and women of all stakeholder groups in reducing disaster risk; and informs and connects people by providing practical services and tools such as Prevention Web, publications on good practices, and by leading the preparation of the Global Assessment Report on Disaster Risk Reduction and the organization of the Global Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction.

The Climate Risk Early Warning Systems (CREWS) is a specialized initiative that aims at saving lives, assets and livelihoods in Least Developed Countries (LDCs) and Small Island Developing States (SIDS). It is a financing mechanism that is driven by the expertise and specialist networks of its implementing partners: The World Bank GFDRR (the Global Facility for Disaster Reduction and Recovery), WMO (World Meteorological Organization) and UNDRR. In 2015, the Climate Risk Early Warning Systems (CREWS) was announced by the Minister of Foreign Affairs of France, at the World Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction in Sendai, Japan. Later that year, CREWS was launched at the 21st Conference of Parties on Climate Change (COP21) in Paris by five countries – Australia, France, Germany, Luxembourg and the Netherlands – with the mandate to work directly with countries at high risk to extreme climate events. Since then, UK DFID (Department for International Development) and Switzerland have joined CREWS, as well as Canada.

The CREWS Caribbean initiative - Strengthening Hydro-Meteorological and Early Warning Services - is a regional project that seeks to strengthen and streamline regional and national systems and capacity related to weather forecasting, hydrological services, multi-hazard impact-based forecasting and warnings and service delivery for enhanced decision-making. Prior to the launch of this initiative, there was a post disaster assessment of early warning systems in the Caribbean following the 2017 hurricane season. One of the critical priorities identified was the need to shift from generic forecasts to impact-based forecasts that will contribute to improved decision-making for response actors. This recommendation has been integrated into the current CREWS Caribbean initiative and will be advanced across the relevant components and corresponding activities. Before the post disaster assessment, the need for a shift from generic forecasts to impact-based forecasting (IBF) was already recognised by a number of regional and global actors including WMO who has published guidelines (2015) to support this work stream along with programming activities embedded in its Public Weather Service Programme. Advancing these areas was also captured within the context of developing guides on the support of National Meteorological and Hydrological Services (NMHSs) to their national multi-hazard early warning procedures, coordination mechanisms, systems and services and in the context of the provision of IBF and warning services in an innovative and integrated way, contained respectively in Resolutions 16 and 26 of the 18th session of the World Meteorological Congress.

Similarly, the implementing partners together with major regional partners have finalized the preparation of A Strategic Roadmap for Advancing MHEWS (Multi-Hazard Early Warning Systems) in the Caribbean 2020-2030. The Roadmap focusses on a set of Strategic Initiatives (SIs) that have a “break-through” potential that provide a framework for further actions to build upon that are achievable in the near to mid-term and of interest and need to the region. SIs exhaustively addressing all challenges of the regional EWS, but rather, a next, critical step towards gearing up towards a MHEWS, that when carried out together, as shown in the Figure below, deliver a sum greater than the parts. One of the identified Sis is: Supporting the Transition to Impact-Based Forecasting (IBF) and warning services.

Purpose of the consultancy

United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNDRR) and its partners are working towards sustainable urbanization by taking proactive actions. In March 2018, the Sendai Framework Monitor was launched by UNDRR as the official tool to report on global and national implementation progress of the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015-2030 (SFDRR), as well as related targets of the Sustainable Development Goals. Among the seven global targets, Target G seeks to substantially increase the availability of and access to MHEWS and disaster risk information and assessments during the Sendai Framework’s period of action.
UNDRR is aiming to develop an Impact-based Forecasting, self-paced e-learning course that aims to train government officials and relevant stakeholders involved in the design, development, implementation and monitoring of MHEWS. The overall objective of this course is to increase the understanding of Impact-Based Forecasting (IBF). The course is comprised of video lectures, online Monitor tutorials, discussion boards, and short assessments.

This consultancy will result in an e-learning course (Massive Open Online Course – MOOC).

Duties and Responsibilities

The individual contractor will report to UNDRR ROAC’s Programme Management Officer (Risk Knowledge), and liaise with CREWS Implementing partners, regional executive partners and other global and regional stakeholders.

• Prepare Terms of Reference for the creation of a Steering Scientific Committee that will support, contribute, validate and revise the MOOC material; and identify potential global and regional members of this committee.

• Prepare a concept note for the development of the MOOC on IBF, including calendar of activities.

• Review and revise existing material on Impact-Based Forecasting worldwide and prepare a draft structure of the MOOC.

• Prepare, organize and report on the Steering Scientific Committee meetings.

• Develop the outline of the full online course (skeleton contents of each course module)and a brochure which explains the rational, structure and programme of the course.

• Develop the necessary material of the MOOC with a minimum of 30 hours duration (5 hours per week/ 6 modules). This involves preparing the course material in PowerPoint (or similar software), recording the presentations in high-quality, compile course material (consisting of lecture notes, text of lecture(s), practical exercises, supporting materials, reading list, and any additional other supporting materials, such as videos, podcasts, etc. It is desirable that course material focuses on SIDS and Caribbean context.

• Liaise with UNDRR and the University of West Indies in order to integrate the course materials in its online learning platform.

• Develop a 90-minute introductory webinar to introduce and promote the MOOC during the last week of October 2022.

• Contact potential MOOC participants and ensure a wide participation, notably of Caribbean learners.

• The individual contractor should be available for the managing of the course online and to engage actively with the participants, through the integrated forum, as well as via short webinars to facilitate live interaction with the participants. The MOOC should be launched during the first week of November 2022 for a period of six weeks..

• Develop a final report stating the outcomes of the MOOC (including background information, structure of the MOOC, # of participants, major discussions, evaluation by participants, future developments, etc.).

Qualifications/special skills

Skills: • Good understanding of the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction is desirable.

• Familiarity with MHEWS and IBF is desirable.
Academic Qualifications: Master's degree in natural or social sciences, information knowledge management, disaster risk management, early warning systems, or related field is required. A Bachelor’s Degree plus two (2) years of relevant experience in the above fields may be accepted in lieu of the advanced university degree.
Experience: • 2 years of experience in the development and management of E-Learning tools is required.

• Experience in using the online training platforms and the creation of training material for E-learning is required.

• Experience in creating training videos and/or produce training videos to be used for online learning is desirable.
Language: • Fluency in English is required. Knowledge of another UN language is an advantage.

Additional Information

*FEMALE CANDIDATES ARE STRONGLY ENCOURAGED TO APPLY. UNDRR values diversity among its staff. We welcome applications from qualified women, men, and people with disabilities.

** Only shortlisted candidates 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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