Job Opening

Posting Title: External Evaluation Consultant for evaluation of the URBAN PATHWAYS project
Department/Office: United Nations Human Settlements Programme
Duty Station: NAIROBI
Posting Period: 14 November 2022 - 23 November 2022
Job Opening Number: 22-United Nations Human Settlements Programme-193641-Consultant
Staffing Exercise N/A
United Nations Core Values: Integrity, Professionalism, Respect for Diversity
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Result of Service

The ultimate result of the service is the final evaluation report of urban pathways project. This aims to serve dual purposes of accountability and learning. It is intended to strengthen accountability by providing UN-Habitat and other implementing partners (WI and UNEP), the donor (IKI), target countries and cities, and other key stakeholders with an independent appraisal and illustrate useful and credible evidence of what the project achieved in terms of the planned results with the resources used. Also, the evaluation is intended to serve the purpose of contributing to enhanced learning to understand what worked well, what did not, operational experience, opportunities and challenges. Evaluation findings, lessons learned and recommendations are expected to be used and feed into decision-making processes for continuation or scaling up of this or similar projects, as well as improvement of future cooperation agreements.

Work Location

Home Based

Expected duration

3 months

Duties and Responsibilities

The United Nations Human Settlements Programme, UN-Habitat, is mandated by the UN-General Assembly to promote socially and environmentally sustainable towns and cities with the goal of providing adequate shelter for all. UN-Habitat works with varied partners including cities, central governments, local authorities, non-governmental organizations, and the private sector in the implementation of the Habitat Agenda and Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in particular, Goal 11 of “Making cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable”.


The Federal Ministry Economic Affairs and Climate Action (BMWK), of the Federal Republic of Germany is supporting implementation of the project: “URBAN PATHWAYS: Supporting Low Carbon Plans for Urban Basic Services in the context of the New Urban Agenda“. Led by UN-Habitat, the project is being implemented by a consortium of partners that includes the Wuppertal Institute of Climate, Energy and Environment and UN Environment.

The Urban Pathways project helps delivering on the Paris Agreement and the NDCs in the context of the New Urban Agenda and the Sustainable Development Goals. The project provides knowledge, capacity and technical assistance to local governments in Kenya, India, Vietnam and Brazil to develop feasible low carbon urban development plans. The plans include an assessment of the political, technological, socio-economic and financial viability. The local implementation concepts are being developed into bankable projects, focusing on the access to urban basic services to create a direct link between climate change mitigation and sustainable development goals. This process is being replicated regionally with policy development and implementation support and advice on stakeholder engagement and financing mechanisms.


1. Introduction

This TOR concerns evaluation of the “URBAN PATHWAYS Project: Supporting Low Carbon Plans for Urban Basic Services in the context of the New Urban Agenda”. The project was funded by the Federal Ministry for Environment, Nature Conservation, Nuclear Safety and Consumer Protection (BMUV), of the Federal Republic of Germany, through its International Climate Initiative (IKI) with a total contribution of 3,499,544.30 Euros. The project is being implemented globally in the countries of Brazil, India, Kenya and Vietnam (and replication countries) by UN-Habitat in partnership with the Wuppertal Institute of Climate, Energy and Environment (WI) and UN Environment; and in collaboration with a consortium of partner institutions in the partner countries. The evaluation will assess the entire implementation period from 2017-2022.

Article V in the agreement between IKI and UN-Habitat mandates this evaluation and specifies that UN-Habitat in consultation with all relevant stakeholders, including the Donor and the governments of the respective countries, will jointly agree on the purpose, use, timing, financing mechanisms and terms of reference for evaluation of the project. UN-Habitat shall commission the evaluation, and the evaluation exercise shall be carried out by an external independent evaluator.

2. Description of the Project evaluated
2.1 Background and Context

The Urban Pathways project was designed to deliver on the Paris Agreement and the Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) in the context of the New Urban Agenda (NUA) and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The project aimed at providing knowledge, capacity and technical assistance to local governments in Kenya, India, Vietnam and Brazil; to develop feasible low carbon urban development action plans and concrete implementation measures to boost low-carbon urban development. The plans included an assessment of the political, technological, socio-economic, and financial viability.

The local implementation pilot projects were to develop into bankable projects, focusing on access to urban basic services to create a direct link between climate change mitigation and the sustainable development goals. These concepts were to be replicated regionally with policy development, technical implementation support and advice on stakeholder engagement and financing mechanisms.

2.2 Project objectives and results

The project aimed at facilitating the dialogue between all related levels of Government and to make a contribution towards key stakeholders in forming coalitions for the implementation of low-carbon urban energy efficiency, mobility and waste management sectors.

The main objective was to make a contribution to global climate change targets towards a 1.5 degree stabilization pathway, unlocking the emission reduction potential of urban mobility, planning and waste management sector.
The outcomes that contributed to the achievement of this objective were effective implementation of action plans, pilot projects and replication plans that contribute to delivering on the New Urban Agenda in the context of the Paris Agreement and Sustainable Development Goals in partner countries.
The outputs contributing to the outcome included:

Output 1: Inform:
Over 10,000 local and national policy makers, practitioners, stakeholders and NGOs are informed about the mitigation potential of sustainable urban services measures. The first level of engagement aims to reach a large number of local and national policy makers, practitioners, stakeholders and NGOs to raise awareness of the mitigation potential of urban energy efficiency, mobility and waste management strategies and show how an integrated approach to urban development can deliver on the New Urban Agenda, the Paris Agreement and the Sustainable Development Goals.

Output 2: Inspire:
Over 2,500 local and national policy makers are inspired about the mitigation urban services measures. The project was to actively train local and national policy makers, practitioners, stakeholders, and NGOs and involve them in a structured capacity building program on the mitigation potential of sustainable urban basic services measures.

Output 3: Initiate
Over 20 national and local governments consider action plans and specific policy proposals developed by the project. Building on the “Inform” and “Inspire” work packages, output 3 facilitated the preparation of policy proposals based on the New Urban Agenda as well as commitments under the Paris Agreement and Agenda 2030. This Work Package also established twinning partnerships between cities.

Output 4: Implement
4 local governments worked towards the implementation of pilot projects and scaling-up implementation plans developed by the project. This Work Package focused on developing feasibility studies and implementation plans for at least four pilot cities. The aim was to ensure that bankable and implementation-ready projects that demonstrate alignment with the NUA, respective country NDCs and the SDGs are developed in the pilot and replication cities.

2.3 Key partners and other key stakeholders

The project aimed at facilitating collaboration between different levels of government and in forming coalitions for implementation of low-carbon basic services strategies. The target group were city officials and local authorities.

The Urban Basic Services Section of UN-Habitat was the overall coordinator and implementor of the project. The project was jointly implemented with the Wuppertal Institute and various other institutions – who together managed to create a network of over 100 partners that are supporting partner and replication countries and cities in implementing activities on low carbon services.
The other implementation partner was UNEP, who provided technical advice in support of effective implementation of Paris Agreement and other actions of national and subnational Governments, cities and private sector in reducing climate disrupting GHG emissions and air pollution through a scientific measurement-based approach. UNEP also assisted in setting up an Air Quality data platform and engaged in impact monitoring of the pilot initiatives.

3. Purpose, Objectives and scope of the Evaluation

The evaluation aims to serve dual purposes of accountability and learning. It is intended to strengthen accountability by providing UN-Habitat and other implementing partners (WI and UNEP), the donor (IKI), target countries and cities, and other key stakeholders with an independent appraisal and illustrate useful and credible evidence of what the project achieved in terms of the planned results with the resources used. Also, the evaluation is intended to serve the purpose of contributing to enhanced learning to understand what worked well, what did not, operational experience, opportunities and challenges. Evaluation findings, lessons learned and recommendations are expected to be used and feed into decision-making processes for continuation or scaling up of this or similar projects, as well as improvement of future cooperation agreements.

In terms of the scope, the logframe of the project will serve as the basis of the evaluation. The evaluation will cover the planning, implementation and monitoring and reporting of project for the whole period of the implementation phase of the project from 2017 to 2022, the targeted 4 countries and related cities, as well as replication activities.

4. Key Evaluation Questions

Relevance:
• Is the project consistent with the priorities of UN-Habitat, IKI and the partners, and contributes to low carbon development?
• To what extent was the programme and its objectives relevant to the needs and priorities of the participating countries and cities and responded to their urban development plans?
• To what extent is the project relevant to beneficiaries and to what extent did the identification, design and implementation process of activities and pilot initiatives involve them?

Efficiency
• How efficiently were the inputs (financial and human resources), partnerships, policies and implementations strategies used to achieve the planned outputs?
• To what extent did institutional, management set-up, and staff capacity contribute to achievement of target results?
• What mechanisms for monitoring and reporting have been built into the project? And what have been the most efficient types of activities?

Effectiveness
• To what extent has the agreement been effective in achieving its planned results and how did UN-Habitat contribute towards these results?
• What results have been achieved and which ones have not been achieved?
• How effectively has UN-Habitat and other implementing partners credibly monitored the implementation of the programme, using the indicators of achievements on outcomes to provide evidence on performance and flag any necessary adjustments to improve delivery of the project?
• How effectively was the programme engaging with countries and cities to achieve desired outcomes of the project?

Sustainability
• To what extent did activities and pilot projects engage beneficiaries in design, implementation and building ownership of the beneficiaries?
• To what extent will the projects and programmes supported by the donor be replicated or scaled up? How is access to financing for further developments secured?
• To what extent was capacity developed and what mechanisms are put in place to ensure sustainability of the results and benefits achieved?
• What accountability and oversight systems were established to secure the benefits from the project are sustained?

Partnerships
• To what extend have the management structures been efficient in developing partnerships, also with other relevant projects?
• To what extend did the project support the promotion of low carbon urban development in regional and global processes and networks?
Coherence
• Was the project coherent and implemented in synergy with other programme of similar objectives
• Was the project coherent or complemented by other donors’ development interventions?
Impact Outlook
• To what extent did the project attain its objective and anticipated long-term impact to partners and targeted beneficiaries, whether stakeholders or cities? (this shall include reference to GHG emission reduction and standard indicators of the project)
• What positive and/or transformative changes have occurred because of the project?


5. Evaluation Approach and Methodology


Approach

The evaluation will be carried out by one external independent consultant in collaboration with the relevant stakeholders. The evaluation approach should be as participatory as possible and utilization-focused. The evaluation will be carried out in conformity with evaluation Norms and Standards of the United Nations System and best practices in the evaluation field.

The evaluation will employ a mix of approaches. A results-based approach (Theory of Change Approach) should be applied to this evaluation; to demonstrate how the project was supposed to achieve its objectives by describing the causal logic of inputs, activities, expected accomplishments; and conditions and assumptions that were needed for the causal changes to take place. Also, the Context Input Process Product (CIPP) approach should be used to assess project implementation structures, procedures, collaboration, coordination, partnerships and targeted beneficiary needs. In addition, the evaluation should be inclusive and consultative with partners and stakeholders. It should be conducted in a transparent way.

Methods

A variety of methods will be applied to collect evaluative information, including:

Review of relevant documents. The consultants will devote the first weeks to review relevant documents and draw data related to the evaluation questions. Relevant documentation will include the Partner Agreements, individual project documents, progress reports, project outcomes etc. The document review will inform the evaluator what data is available and provide overview of project design and performance. It will also identify specific issues to follow-up during interviews and the possible field visits.

Key informant interviews and consultations with key stakeholders. Interviews will be conducted to obtain qualitative information on the evaluation issues to enable the evaluators address the issues of relevance, efficiency, effectiveness of the project. Interviews shall be conducted with stakeholders of the partner organisations and cities as well as the beneficiaries (with a focus on Kenya, Brazil, Vietnam and India).


Surveys. In order to obtain quantitative information on stakeholder’s views, questionnaires to different target audiences (project beneficiaries and UN-Habitat staff) to give views on various evaluation issues will be deployed.

Field visits. A field mission will be undertaken to UN-Habitat Headquarters – Nairobi, and possibly to some selected field projects.

The evaluation consultant will describe expected data analysis and instruments to be used in the evaluation inception report. Presentation of the evaluation findings should follow a standard format of the UN-Habitat Evaluation report (to be provided).

6. Stakeholders participation

One of the key determinants of evaluation utilization is the extent to which clients and stakeholders are meaningfully involved in the evaluation process. It is expected that this evaluation will be participatory, involving key stakeholders: UN-Habitat Management, staff involved in the design, implementation, and reporting of the IKI funded Urban Pathways project, project partners, beneficiaries of the project, and IKI as the donor.

Stakeholders will be kept informed of the evaluation processes including design, information collection, evaluation reporting and results dissemination to create a positive attitude for evaluation-utilization.

The evaluation shall be carried out by an international evaluation consultant. The consultant will be independent of activities to be evaluated and has no stake in the outcome of the evaluation. The evaluation consultant will be responsible for the quality of work and preparation of the specified evaluation deliverables.

Consultant will work under the overall supervision of the Coordinator of the Urban Basic Services Section, and in close collaboration with the thematic team on mobility - reporting to the Programme Management, Lead Urban Mobility.

Duties and responsibilities

(i) To assess the performance of the project in terms of achieving the planned results at objective, expected accomplishments (outcomes) and output levels. This will entail analysis of actual versus planned results;

(ii) To assess relevance, efficiency, effectiveness, sustainability, impact and coherence of the project;

(iii) To assess the adequacy of planning, resources, working arrangements, coordination, cooperation and partnership modalities and management and how they contributed to achieving the planned results of the project;

(iv) Assess UN-Habitat direct response to Covid-19 and the effects of it to this particular project;

(v) To assess the extent to which cross-cutting issues such as environmental sustainability, social inclusion issues of gender equality, human rights, and youth were integrated in design, implementation, monitoring and reporting of the project;

(vi) To identify lessons learned and propose forward-looking recommendations that are strategic, programmatic and managerial for decision-making considerations.

Qualifications/special skills

• Advanced knowledge and understanding of conducting evaluation and participatory processes and delivering specified outputs, presenting credible findings derived from evidence and putting conclusions and recommendations supported by the evaluation findings is required.

• Advanced academic degree and professional experience in urban development, environmental management, climate policy, international climate governance or related fields is required.

. A minimum of 10 years of progressively responsible experience in evaluation and climate policy is required.

Languages

English and French are the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat. For the post advertised, fluency in oral and written English is required. Knowledge of any other United Nations official languages is an asset.

Additional Information

Established network with governmental organisations and institutions working on climate policy (preferably also in the German context).

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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