Job Opening

Posting Title: Local Urban Economy and Finance Consultant - Tajikistan
Department/Office: United Nations Human Settlements Programme
Duty Station: NAIROBI
Posting Period: 04 August 2022 - 12 August 2022
Job Opening Number: 22-United Nations Human Settlements Programme-186917-Consultant
Staffing Exercise N/A
United Nations Core Values: Integrity, Professionalism, Respect for Diversity

Result of Service

This consultancy is to undertake technical work to support with the development of the Urban Economy and to deliver a key knowledge product in regard to local economic development.

Work Location

Tajikistan

Expected duration

4 months ( Part time)

Duties and Responsibilities

UN-Habitat
UN-Habitat, the United Nations Human Settlements Programme, is mandated by the UN General Assembly to promote socially and environmentally sustainable and resilient towns and cities. It is the focal point agency for all urbanisation and human settlement matters within the UN system. UN-Habitat envisions well-planned, well-governed and efficient cities and towns, with adequate housing, infrastructure and universal access to employment and basic services such as water, energy, and sanitation.

UN-Habitat Urban Planning and Design Lab
The Urban Planning and Design Lab (Urban Lab) is an initiative from UN-Habitat to promptly respond to the requests of national and local governments to support sustainable urban development. The Urban Lab is the integrative facility of the Agency where innovative processes and partnerships are translated into tangible and transformative solutions to complex urban challenges. Throughout, the Urban Lab acts as a neutral broker, managing knowledge in complex stakeholder settings to resolve multi-sectoral, multi-scalar and multi-stakeholder challenges.

The Lab brings together a multidisciplinary team of urban planners, environmental, data-science, mobility, legal and financial experts, providing a holistic and proactive approach to sustainable urbanization. Hence, the Lab captures the necessary thematic disciplines, experts, actors and stakeholders. In this context, the Urban Lab applies an integrated approach to systemic and strategic planning to deliver transformative change for sustainable urbanization and to achieve the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the New Urban Agenda.

Promoting Environmental and Socio-Economic Resilience in Khorog, Tajikistan
Tajikistan remains one of the poorest countries in Europe and Central Asia despite the country achieving remarkable poverty reduction and growing its economy over the past decade. Tajikistan's economic vulnerability is exacerbated by the impacts of climate change, which is considered as a growing threat to the country's natural environment, ecosystems, and people's livelihood.

The World Bank in 2010 commissioned a report listing Tajikistan as the most vulnerable to the impacts of climate change induced natural disasters in Central and Eurasia and with the second to least coping capacity in the region due to agriculture's high dependence on rainfall during the irrigation season, high levels of environmental degradation, land erosion, deforestation rates and deteriorating social infrastructure. The unpredictability of precipitation frequency and intensity directly impacts vulnerable sectors of the national economy and threatens food security.

At an elevation of nearly 2,200 meters, Khorog remains one of the highest peri-urban settlements in Central Asia. At the confluence of the Gunt and Pyanj rivers in Gorno-Badakhshan Autonomous Oblast (GBAO), Khorog serves as the administrative hub for the oblast and as the cultural centre for its nearly 240,000 residents. As a result of poor planning, land scarcity and overextended infrastructure, the expanding population base in Khorog has continued to encroach on habitats that are at significant risk from natural hazards with limited access to municipal services. This has led to ad hoc interventions in water supply, sewerage and access to energy which has further deteriorated the environment. This, alongside the increasing frequency of natural hazards resulting from climate change, has led to increasing challenges in the maintenance of social stability in the state and civil society.

In the 1st phase, UN-Habitat's Urban Lab, in partnership with Aga Khan Agency for Habitat (AKAH), developed an Integrated Spatial Plan for Khorog that creates economic opportunities and builds social stability for future growth scenarios. The plan aimed to provide the planning direction to improve resilience and social stability for existing communities and accommodate the increasing populations in Khorog in a sustainable way. In the 2nd phase, the project will aim to demonstrate the implementation of proposed policies and actions at the urban design scale by transformative projects while reflecting them in the design guidelines and legislative documents. In addition, the Urban Lab will develop a Capital Investment Plan to guide the prioritisation and financing of proposed urban interventions in the plan. Overall, the project aims to improve government stakeholders' planning and technical capacity through training sessions and collaborative planning and design projects (learning-by-doing). UN-Habitat aims to provide planning expertise, drawing on existing methodologies, toolkits, and best practices in a collaborative and integrated way to guide the growth of Khorog.


Duties and Responsibilities
Under the overall the overall supervision of the Chief of the Planning, Finance and Economy Section and the day-to-day supervision of the Head of Urban Lab, the consultant will be responsible for the following duties:

• Provide guidance and support to the municipal finance and budgetary assessment at the national and city levels to understand investment patterns.
• Analyze financial capacity of the government including both municipal fiscal and financial management capacity.
• Provide technical support in stakeholders mapping for infrastructure investments.
• Collect data in consultation with authorities to develop a list of ongoing and proposed infrastructure projects, including the cost estimates and stakeholders involved.
• Consult with the government authorities and financing institutions.
• Provide technical support to develop localized criteria by which to prioritize investment.
• Develop cost estimates for prioritized investments and validate it with the relevant stakeholders.
• Develop “investment cards” for the prioritized investments showing indicative costs, benefits, location, context, rational for investment and validating them with relevant stakeholders.
• Review project outputs and provide technical recommendations related to Capital Investment Planning.
• Provide technical advice for the development of the capacity-building activities and thematic learnings to build the capacity of city authorities.
• Facilitate communication between stakeholders and overcome potential linguistic barriers.
• Translate key documents in English and Tajik.
• Safeguard the cross-cutting issues that are considered in each project: Climate Change, Gender Equality, Human Rights, Youth, Children and Elderly Persons, and Disability.

Qualifications/special skills

Academic Qualifications: A minimum advanced university degree (Master's degree or equivalent) in urban development, urban economics, economics, or related field. A first-level university degree in combination with 2 years of experience may be accepted in lieu of an advanced university degree.

Experience: A minimum of 5 years of experience in urban planning and urban infrastructure project structuring and finance, including knowledge of local, national, and international financial sources available is required.

Experience working with government entities and/or international organizations is desirable

Experience with local finance and in dealing with international cooperation agencies will be considered and added advantage.

Language: English and French are the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat. For this consultancy, fluency in oral and written English and Tajik is required. . Knowledge of the Russian language will be an asset

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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