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Mid Term Evaluation Consultancy
Procurement Process :RFP - Request for proposal
Office :UNDP Pacific - FIJI
Deadline :17-Jan-19
Posted on :02-Jan-19
Development Area :CONSULTANTSCONSULTANTS
Reference Number :52485
Link to Atlas Project :
00091802 - Marshall Islands Ridge to Reef (PPG)
Documents :
Template for Confirmation of Interest and Submission of Financial Proposal
TOR _Mid Term Evaluation for FSM R2R
Overview :

 

 

Consultancy Title:             Mid Term Evaluation Consultancy

Project Name:                    National Ridge to Reef Project in the FSM

Duty Station:                       Federated States of Micronesia (FSM)

Duration of Assignment:   34 days, commencing no later than 24 January, 2019, and completion by 8 April, 2019. The Consultant will be expected to travel to all four states of FSM but partake in briefing and debriefings with National Government in the State of Pohnpei.   

 

 

Deadline for submission of applications:  17 January 2019  

 

 

 

Consultancy Proposal should be sent via email to etenderbox.pacific@undp.org no later than 17th January, 2019 (Fiji Time) clearly stating the title of consultancy applied for. Any proposals received after this date/time will not be accepted. Any request for clarification must be sent in writing, or by standard electronic communication to procurement.fj@undp.org. UNDP will respond in writing or by standard electronic mail and will send written copies of the response, including an explanation of the query without identifying the source of inquiry, to all consultants. Incomplete, late and joint proposals will not be considered and only offers for which there is further interest will be contacted. Failure to submit your application as stated as per the application submission guide (Procurement Notice) on the above link will be considered incomplete and therefore application will not be considered.                        

Objectives

 

The MTR will assess progress towards the achievement of the project objectives and outcomes as specified in the Project Document and assess early signs of project success or failure with the goal of identifying the necessary changes to be made in order to set the project on-track to achieve its intended results. The MTR will also review the project’s strategy, its risks to sustainability. It is also essential that findings of the Strategic Environment Assessment (SEA) are considered in the findings/recommendation of this review.

 

This is the Terms of Reference (ToR) for the UNDP-GEF Midterm Review (MTR) of the full or medium-sized project titled Implementing an integrated “Ridge to Reef” approach to enhance ecosystem services, to conserve globally important biodiversity and to sustain local livelihoods in the FSM (PIMS:5179) implemented through the Department of Environment, Climate Change and Emergency Management (DECCEM), which is to be undertaken in 2018. The project started on the 19 November 2015 and is in its third year of implementation. In line with the UNDP-GEF Guidance on MTRs, this MTR process was initiated before the submission of the second Project Implementation Report (PIR). This ToR sets out the expectations for this MTR.  The MTR process must follow the guidance outlined in the document Guidance for Conducting Midterm Reviews of UNDP-Supported, GEF-Financed Projects

(http://web.undp.org/evaluation/documents/guidance/GEF/mid-term/Guidance_Midterm%20Review%20_EN_2014.pdf

 

 

Background Information

The Implementing an integrated “Ridge to Reef” approach to enhance ecosystem services, to conserve globally important biodiversity and to sustain local livelihoods in the FSM is a five-year (2015-2020) Project, funded by Global Environment Facility (GEF), implemented by UNDP and executed nationally by the Department of Environment, Climate Change and Emergency Management (DECCEM), in the Federated States of Micronesia.  The GEF grant is of USD 4,689,815.

The Project’s objective is: to strengthen local, State and National capacities and actions to implement integrated ecosystem-based management through “ridge to reef” approach on the High Islands of the four States of the FSM. This will be achieved through two components that are designed to address the barriers of (i) not having an overarching framework for promoting sustainable development in FSM’s High Islands and (ii) inadequate representation and ineffective management of biodiversity in protected areas:

  • Component 1: Integrated Ecosystems Management and Rehabilitation on the High Islands of the FSM to enhance Ridge to Reef Connectivity, (Outcome 1), which is essentially about sustainable land management; and

Component 2: Management Effectiveness enhanced within new and existing PAs on the High Islands of FSM as part of R2R approach, both marine and terrestrial (Outcome 2), which is essentially about protected areas

Marine and terrestrial biodiversity and ecosystem services underpin social well-being and the economy of the Federated States of Micronesia and are vital to food security. These resources and services, however, are currently being undermined by unsustainable natural resource use and practices; spread of invasive alien species; the impacts of climate change; and, the limitations of government to effectively implement its programs and policies.

The development of a Strategy Environment Assessment (SEA) is a key activity currently being implemented. This is potentially the largest component of the R2R as it will inform decision making concerning land management and biodiversity conservation in the four states of FSM.

This project is designed to engineer a paradigm shift in the approach to and management of natural resources from an ad-hoc species/site/problem centric approach to a holistic ecosystem-based management “ridge to reef” approach guided by planning and management process that are informed by actual data. The shift to an ecosystem-based approach within National and State governments will ensure that whole island systems are managed to enhance ecosystem goods and services, to conserve globally important biodiversity and to sustain local livelihoods.

The project will promote an integrated approach towards fostering sustainable land management and biodiversity conservation by seeking greater awareness, knowledge and participation of all stakeholders in achieving a greater balance between environmental management and development needs. In doing so it will reduce conflicting land-uses and land-use practices and improve the sustainability of terrestrial and marine management so as to maintain the flow of vital ecosystem services and sustain the livelihoods of local communities. Further, the project will demonstrate sustainable land management practices testing new management measures, as needed, to reduce existing environmental stressors and institutional limitations.

The project will also enhance the FSMs capacities to effectively manage its protected area estate as well as increase the coverage of the terrestrial and marine protected area network on the High Islands.

Under the DECCEM, a Project Implementation Unit (PIU) comprising of a Project Manager, a Financial Administrator, four state-based Coordinators and a National Technical Coordinator is responsible for implementing the various components of the project. This includes providing technical leadership to the project, managing and coordinating project activities, contracting service providers, providing oversight on the day to day operations of the project, communications, monitoring and evaluation of project performance, reporting and serve as secretariat for the Project Steering Committee and State Technical Advisory Committees (TAC). The Financial Administrator’s primary functions will be to ensure that projects funds are disbursed timeously according to an agreed work plan/payment schedule, and that the project’s financial management meets UNDP management/reporting requirements. UND’s role is specifically to provide monitoring and oversight of the Project.

 

 

Approach and Methodology

The MTR must provide evidence-based information that is credible, reliable and useful. The MTR consultant  will review all relevant sources of information including documents prepared during the preparation phase (i.e. PIF, UNDP Initiation Plan, UNDP Environmental & Social Safeguard Policy, the Project Document, project reports including Annual Project Review/PIRs, project budget revisions, lesson learned reports, national strategic and legal documents, and any other materials that the team considers useful for this evidence-based review). The MTR consultant will review the baseline GEF focal area Tracking Tool submitted to the GEF at CEO endorsement, and the midterm GEF focal area Tracking Tool that must be completed before the MTR field mission begins.  

The MTR consultant is expected to follow a collaborative and participatory approach[1] ensuring close engagement with the Project Team, government counterparts (the GEF Operational Focal Point), the UNDP Country Office(s), UNDP-GEF Regional Technical Advisers, and other key stakeholders.

Engagement of stakeholders is vital to a successful MTR.[2] Stakeholder involvement should include interviews with stakeholders who have project responsibilities, including but not limited to national government departments, state governments, state-based NGO’s/ Civil Society Organizations, resource owning communities, component leaders, key experts and consultants in the subject area, Project Steering Committee, other project stakeholders, academia, etc. Additionally, the MTR team is expected to conduct field missions to all four states including Kosrae, Pohnpei, Chuuk and Yap.

The final MTR report should describe the full MTR approach taken and the rationale for the approach making explicit the underlying assumptions, challenges, strengths and weaknesses about the methods and approach of the review.

 

The MTR consultant will assess the following four categories of project progress. See the Guidance For Conducting Midterm Reviews of UNDP-Supported, GEF-Financed Projects for extended descriptions.

 

i.    Project Strategy

Project design:

  • Review the problem addressed by the project and the underlying assumptions.  Review the effect of any incorrect assumptions or changes to the context to achieving the project results as outlined in the Project Document.
  • Review the relevance of the project strategy and assess whether it provides the most effective route towards expected/intended results.  Were lessons from other relevant projects properly incorporated into the project design?
  • Review how the project addresses country priorities. Review country ownership. Was the project concept in line with the national sector development priorities and plans of the country (or of participating countries in the case of multi-country projects)?
  • Review decision-making processes: were perspectives of those who would be affected by project decisions, those who could affect the outcomes, and those who could contribute information or other resources to the process, taken into account during project design processes?
  • Review the extent to which relevant gender issues were raised in the project design. See Annex 9 of Guidance For Conducting Midterm Reviews of UNDP-Supported, GEF-Financed Projects for further guidelines.
  • If there are major areas of concern, recommend areas for improvement.

 

Results Framework/Logframe:

  • Undertake a critical analysis of the project’s logframe indicators and targets, assess how “SMART” the midterm and end-of-project targets are (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, Time-bound), and suggest specific amendments/revisions to the targets and indicators as necessary.
  • Are the project’s objectives and outcomes or components clear, practical, and feasible within its time frame?
  • Examine if progress so far has led to or could in the future catalyse beneficial development effects (i.e. income generation, gender equality and women’s empowerment, improved governance etc...) that should be included in the project results framework and monitored on an annual basis.
  • Ensure broader development and gender aspects of the project are being monitored effectively.  Develop and recommend SMART ‘development’ indicators, including sex-disaggregated indicators and indicators that capture development benefits.

 

ii.    Progress Towards Results

 

Progress Towards Outcomes Analysis:

  • Review the logframe indicators against progress made towards the end-of-project targets using the Progress Towards Results Matrix and following the Guidance For Conducting Midterm Reviews of UNDP-Supported, GEF-Financed Projects; colour code progress in a “traffic light system” based on the level of progress achieved; assign a rating on progress for each outcome; make recommendations from the areas marked as “Not on target to be achieved” (red).

 

In addition to the progress towards outcomes analysis:

  • Compare and analyse the GEF Tracking Tool at the Baseline with the one completed right before the Midterm Review.
  • Identify remaining barriers to achieving the project objective in the remainder of the project.
  • By reviewing the aspects of the project that have already been successful, identify ways in which the project can further expand these benefits.

 

iii.   Project Implementation and Adaptive Management

 

Management Arrangements:

  • Review overall effectiveness of project management as outlined in the Project Document.  Have changes been made and are they effective?  Are responsibilities and reporting lines clear?  Is decision-making transparent and undertaken in a timely manner?  Recommend areas for improvement.
  • Review the quality of execution of the Executing Agency/Implementing Partner(s) and recommend areas for improvement.
  • Review the quality of support provided by the GEF Partner Agency (UNDP) and recommend areas for improvement.

 

Work Planning:

  • Review any delays in project start-up and implementation, identify the causes and examine if they have been resolved.
  • Are work-planning processes results-based?  If not, suggest ways to re-orientate work planning to focus on results?
  • Examine the use of the project’s results framework/ logframe as a management tool and review any changes made to it since project start. 
  • Examine the relevance of indicators and targets as per the results framework/ log frame and wherever necessary recommend appropriate changes

 

Finance and co-finance:

  • Consider the financial management of the project, with specific reference to the cost-effectiveness of interventions. 
  • Review the changes to fund allocations as a result of budget revisions and assess the appropriateness and relevance of such revisions.
  • Does the project have the appropriate financial controls, including reporting and planning, that allow management to make informed decisions regarding the budget and allow for timely flow of funds?
  • Informed by the co-financing monitoring table to be filled out, provide commentary on co-financing: is co-financing being used strategically to help the objectives of the project? Is the Project Team meeting with all co-financing partners regularly in order to align financing priorities and annual work plans?

 

Project-level Monitoring and Evaluation Systems:

  • Review the monitoring tools currently being used:  Do they provide the necessary information? Do they involve key partners? Are they aligned or mainstreamed with national systems?  Do they use existing information? Are they efficient? Are they cost-effective? Are additional tools required? How could they be made more participatory and inclusive?
  • Examine the financial management of the project monitoring and evaluation budget.  Are sufficient resources being allocated to monitoring and evaluation? Are these resources being allocated effectively?

 

Stakeholder Engagement:

  • Project management: Has the project developed and leveraged the necessary and appropriate partnerships with direct and tangential stakeholders?
  • Participation and country-driven processes: Do local and national government stakeholders support the objectives of the project?  Do they continue to have an active role in project decision-making that supports efficient and effective project implementation?
  • Participation and public awareness: To what extent has stakeholder involvement and public awareness contributed to the progress towards achievement of project objectives?

 

Reporting:

  • Assess how adaptive management changes have been reported by the project management and shared with the Project Board.
  • Assess how well the Project Team and partners undertake and fulfil GEF reporting requirements (i.e. how have they addressed poorly-rated PIRs, if applicable?)
  • Assess how lessons derived from the adaptive management process have been documented, shared with key partners and internalized by partners.

 

Communications:

  • Review internal project communication with stakeholders: Is communication regular and effective? Are there key stakeholders left out of communication? Are there feedback mechanisms when communication is received? Does this communication with stakeholders contribute to their awareness of project outcomes and activities and investment in the sustainability of project results?
  • Review external project communication: Are proper means of communication established or being established to express the project progress and intended impact to the public (is there a web presence, for example? Or did the project implement appropriate outreach and public awareness campaigns?)
  • For reporting purposes, write one half-page paragraph that summarizes the project’s progress towards results in terms of contribution to sustainable development benefits, as well as global environmental benefits.

 

iv.   Sustainability

  • Validate whether the risks identified in the Project Document, Annual Project Review/PIRs and the ATLAS Risk Management Module are the most important and whether the risk ratings applied are appropriate and up to date. If not, explain why.
  • In addition, assess the following risks to sustainability:

 

Financial risks to sustainability:

  • What is the likelihood of financial and economic resources not being available once the GEF assistance ends (consider potential resources can be from multiple sources, such as the public and private sectors, income generating activities, and other funding that will be adequate financial resources for sustaining project’s outcomes)?

 

Socio-economic risks to sustainability:

  • Are there any social or political risks that may jeopardize sustainability of project outcomes? What is the risk that the level of stakeholder ownership (including ownership by governments and other key stakeholders) will be insufficient to allow for the project outcomes/benefits to be sustained? Do the various key stakeholders see that it is in their interest that the project benefits continue to flow? Is there sufficient public / stakeholder awareness in support of the long-term objectives of the project? Are lessons learned to be documented by the Project Team on a continual basis and shared/ transferred to appropriate parties who could learn from the project and potentially replicate and/or scale it in the future?

 

Institutional Framework and Governance risks to sustainability:

  • Do the legal frameworks, policies, governance structures and processes pose risks that may jeopardize sustenance of project benefits? While assessing this parameter, also consider if the required systems/ mechanisms for accountability, transparency, and technical knowledge transfer are in place.

 

Environmental risks to sustainability:

  • Are there any environmental risks that may jeopardize sustenance of project outcomes?

 

Conclusions & Recommendations

 

The MTR consultant will include a section of the report setting out the MTR’s evidence-based conclusions, in light of the findings.[3]

 

Recommendations should be succinct suggestions for critical intervention that are specific, measurable, achievable, and relevant. A recommendation table should be put in the report’s executive summary. See the Guidance For Conducting Midterm Reviews of UNDP-Supported, GEF-Financed Projects for guidance on a recommendation table.

 

The MTR team should make no more than 15 recommendations total.

 

Ratings

 

The MTR consultant will include its ratings of the project’s results and brief descriptions of the associated achievements in a MTR Ratings & Achievement Summary Table in the Executive Summary of the MTR report. See Annex E for ratings scales. No rating on Project Strategy and no overall project rating is required.

 

 

 

 

TIMEFRAME

 

The total duration of the MTR will 34 days or approximately 4 months starting 22 January 2018 and shall not exceed five months from when the consultant(s) are hired. The tentative MTR timeframe is as follows:

 

MTR ARRANGEMENTS

 

The principal responsibility for managing this MTR resides with the Commissioning Unit. The Commissioning Unit for this project’s MTR is the UNDP Pacific Office.

 

The commissioning unit will contract the consultant and ensure the timely provision of per diems and travel arrangements within FSM for the MTR consultant. The Project Team will be responsible for liaising with the MTR team to provide all relevant documents, set up stakeholder interviews, and arrange field visits as well as focal points in each state.

 

CONSULTANCY CRITERIA

 

A independent consultant will conduct the MTR - one team leader (with experience and exposure to projects and evaluations in other regions globally).  The consultant cannot have participated in the project preparation, formulation, and/or implementation (including the writing of the Project Document) and should not have a conflict of interest with project’s related activities. 

 

The selection of consultant will be aimed at maximizing the overall qualities in the following areas

  • Recent experience with result-based management evaluation methodologies;
  • Experience applying SMART indicators and reconstructing or validating baseline scenarios;
  • Competence in adaptive management, as applied to GEF Focal Areas of land degradation, international waters and biodiversity);
  • Previous experience facilitating evaluations of GEF/UNDP and other development agency supported projects/initiatives;
  • Experience working in the Pacific region and/or small island state is advantageous;
  • Work experience in relevant technical areas for at least 10 years;
  • Demonstrated understanding of issues related to gender and biodiversity, land degradation and international waters; experience in gender sensitive evaluation and analysis.
  • Excellent communication skills;
  • Demonstrable analytical skills;
  • A Master’s degree in Environmental Conservation, Sustainable Development, Development studies and
  • Familiarity and experience with Strategic Environmental Assessment approaches is preferred

 

Criteria

Max. Point

Qualification

  • Master’s degree in Environmental Conservation, Sustainable Development, Development studies

 

10%

Experience

 

  • Previous experience facilitating evaluations of GEF/UNDP and other development agency supported projects/initiatives;

 

  • 10 years of relevant experience in a closely related field is necessary

 

  • Experience applying SMART indicators and reconstructing or validating baseline scenarios;

 

  • Competence in adaptive management, as applied to GEF Focal Areas of land degradation, international waters and biodiversity);

 

  • Demonstrated understanding of issues related to gender and biodiversity, land degradation and international waters; experience in gender sensitive evaluation and analysis.

 

  • Familiarity and experience with Strategic Environmental Assessment approaches is preferred

 

 

 

10%

      

 

10%

 

10%

 

10%

 

 

10%

 

 

10%

 

 

 

 

Total

70%

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Criteria for Evaluation of Proposal:  Only those applications which are responsive and compliant will be evaluated.  Offers will be evaluated according to the Combined Scoring method – where the educational background and experience on similar assignments will be weighted at 70% and the price proposal will weigh as 30% of the total scoring.  The applicant receiving the Highest Combined Score that has also accepted UNDP’s General Terms and Conditions will be awarded the contract.

 

 

PAYMENT MODALITIES AND SPECIFICATIONS

 

  • 20% of payment upon signing of contract and acceptance of work plan by January 28
  • 10% of payment upon approval of the final MTR Inception Report by February 5 
  • 30% upon approval of the draft MTR report by March 24
  • 40% upon approval of final MTR report, including audit trail by April 8

 

Supervision/Reporting

 

The Consultant will report and supervised by the Deputy Team Leader Resilience and Sustainable Development Unit, UNDP Pacific Office in Fiji. While working in FSM, the CTA will be required to also report to the Secretary for the DECEM.

 

The consultant is expected to provide for his/her own laptop. Works station and other support will be provided for by the project.

 

He/ She is expected to coordinate closely with the Department of Environment, Climate Change and Emergency Management (DECEM), Project Implementation Unit, and UNDP Pacific Office in Fiji.

 

 

 

Proposal Submission Documents

 

  1. Letter of Confirmation of Interest and Availability and Financial Proposal ( UNDP Template)
  2. Detailed CV
  3. Brief description of approach to work/technical proposal of why the individual considers him/herself as the most suitable for the assignment, and a proposed methodology on how they will approach and complete the assignment; (max 1 page)
  4. Financial Proposal that indicates the all-inclusive fixed total contract price and all other travel related costs (excluding in country costs of travel), supported by a breakdown of costs, as per template attached to the Letter of Confirmation of Interest template. If an applicant is employed by an organization/company/institution, and he/she expects his/her employer to charge a management fee in the process of releasing him/her to UNDP under Reimbursable Loan Agreement (RLA), the applicant must indicate at this point, and ensure that all such costs are duly incorporated in the financial proposal submitted to UNDP. 

 

The Consultant must send a financial proposal based on a Lump Sum Amount. The total amount quoted shall be all-inclusive and include all costs components required to perform the deliverables identified in the TOR, including professional fee, travel costs, living allowance (if any work is to be done outside the IC´s duty station) and any other applicable cost to be incurred by the IC in completing the assignment. The contract price will be fixed output-based price regardless of extension of the herein specified duration. Payments will be done upon completion of the deliverables/outputs.

 

In general, UNDP shall not accept travel costs exceeding those of an economy class ticket. Should the IC wish to travel on a higher class he/she should do so using their own resources. In the event of unforeseeable travel not anticipated in this TOR, payment of travel costs including tickets, lodging and terminal expenses should be agreed upon, between the respective business unit and the Individual Consultant, prior to travel and will be reimbursed.

The P11 form and Template for confirmation of interest and Submission of Financial Proposal is available under the procurement section of UNDP Fiji website (www.pacific.undp.org)

 

 

Women candidates are encouraged to apply.