UN WOMEN: SENIOR RESEARCH CONSULTANT (WOMEN'S PHYSICAL SECURITY INDEX)


Location : Home based (with one trip to NY)
Application Deadline :18-Oct-12
Type of Contract :Individual Contract
Post Level :International Consultant
Languages Required :
English  
Duration of Initial Contract :20-30 days
Expected Duration of Assignment :20-30 days

Background

Submitted to the Security Council in October 2010, the Secretary-General’s report S/2010/498[1] on women and peace and security presented a set of indicators for use at the global level to track implementation of resolution 1325 (2000). In its presidential statement (S/PRST/2010/22)[2] following the presentation of this report, the Security Council supported taking forward the set of indicators “for use as an initial framework to track implementation of its resolution 1325 in situations of armed conflict and post-conflict and other situations relevant to the implementation of resolution 1325, as appropriate, and taking into account the specificity of each country.” The report summarizes the next steps required to take forward the set of indicators, such as the definition of methods for data collection and collation, development of reporting templates, elaboration of guidance, definition of timelines, etc. (see paragraphs 119-124).

UN Women is leading an inter-agency process to ensure the coordinated implementation and reporting on these indicators in the annual report of the Secretary-General on women and peace and security. The indicators are organized in three sets by phases of implementation: (i) indicators monitoring progress on UN-level commitments to 1325 implementation; (ii) indicators that require a shift in UN activities to meet commitments; and (iii) indicators for voluntary reporting by Member States.

Among the indicators for voluntary reporting by Member States is 1325 indicator on an index of women’s and girls’ physical security. This indicator measures women’s own perceptions of insecurity, as well as proxy measures of women and girls’ security such as ability to engage in public life (e.g., participating in physically distant markets, running for public office), and their ability to resume normal social activities (e.g., seeing girls to school, collecting fuel, supporting cultural events). Understanding women’s safety and security concerns and how they define ‘physical security’ can advance understanding of women’s needs and how to make interventions responsive to these.

While some surveys/studies exist that measure women and girl’s perceptions of physical security, there is a need for a systematized collection of data in order to track this indicator. This will require the conceptual development of a specific survey instrument to track changes over time in individual contexts and to provide the necessary information to determine what might be done to address both underlying levels of insecurity and women’s perceptions of their own physical security. Developing standardized methodology and principles to guide surveys across different contexts as well as strategies for index development including agreed combination of weighted results from the survey is needed.

In 2012, a series of consultations will be held to develop and refine the technical definitions, data collection mechanisms and reporting channels of the Member State indicators.


Duties and Responsibilities

Under the supervision of the Peace and Security Section of UN Women, the Offeror will coordinate and conduct research and produce a report reviewing a) recent statistical, academic and policy literature on the measurement of women’s and girls’ physical security including comprehensive assessment of existing survey sources on women’s and girls’ perceptions of physical security; b) identification of key questions of use in a potential survey contribution to capture women’s and girls’ perceptions of physical security, noting in particular potential areas of bias in phrasing and other technical challenges and ways to manage; and c) methodological proposal on the development of an index aggregating perceptions of physical security, including weights, benchmarks and aggregation steps. This will involve:

Review, collection and analysis of existing information on measurement of women’s and girls’ physical security:
  • Conduct a review of relevant literature, analyses and existing survey tools on the measurement of women’s and girls’ physical security, on the collection of data on women’s and girls’ physical security, and on indicators measuring the impact of physical insecurity of women’s and girls’ abilities to participate in public life and regular activities. This review should include assessment of gaps and challenges in the literature and existing surveys towards measurement of these areas.
  • The review should emphasize survey-based indicators that facilitate comparison of perceptions of insecurity of different social groups including internally displaced persons, age groups, ethnicity, etc., and how they compare in severity of threats.
  • A table listing available surveys by types of questions, country and time-period coverage, number and length of questionnaires, sampling framework, source, etc., and including gaps should summarize the results of the literature review.
Based on the literature and survey review, develop a set of proposed questions to inform survey collection on women’s and girls’ physical security:
  • The survey questionnaire on women’s and girls’ perceptions of insecurity should aim to develop indicators on:
  • Perceptions of physical security of women and girls, including by location, time of day;
  • Proxy variables measuring how women’s and girls’ ability participate in public life has been affected by physical insecurity; and
  • Proxy variables measuring how women’s and girls’ regular activities have been affected by physical insecurity.
  • Cross-country time comparisons should be feasible, yet a focus on tracking changes over time for individual contexts is a priority.
  • Existing survey questionnaires and adaptation to development to the set of indicators should be clearly highlighted.
Index aggregation options and limitations:
  • Methods for aggregating component indicators into a composite index should be proposed including rationale for aggregation and weighting methodologies.
  • Potential caveats and challenges of the proposed composite index with the added value and limitations of a composite index in specific contexts should be discussed. What value added, how would trends be assessed and other limitations should be clearly identified.
  • Demonstration of feasibility of the developed index proposal should include plausible examples based on a set of agreed upon individual countries as proof of concept.
Expected outputs/deliverables:
  • Annotated outline for the research study with key issues, questions and methodologies to be covered, including list of existing surveys on women’s and girls’ physical security.
  • A report (20 – 35 single-space pages) reviewing a) literature and gaps, b) questions to inform survey building on lessons learned and limitations, and c) composite index methodology proposal towards construction of an index of women’s and girls’ physical security.
The final report should also highlight key gaps and challenges and include a set of proposed strategies for implementation of a survey to collect data to build the outlined indicators.
  • Revisions, as needed, and finalization of report.
  • Participation, as required, in planning and running analytical or review/validation events, and in the presentation of findings and facilitation of discussion around the measurement of women’s and girls’ physical security.
Delivery Items & Delivery Times:
  • Annotated outline for the research – 7 business days from contracting
  • A report – 6 weeks from validation of the annotated outline by the procuring entity
  • 2 Rounds of Approval – 2 weeks following the submission of the report
  • Final Delivery of English version – 9 weeks from the contract date


Competencies

  • Excellent communication skills including English language writing skills;
  • High level of initiative and self-motivation;
  • Basic computer literacy.


Required Skills and Experience

Education
  • Master’s degree (PhD an asset) in international relations, gender and war studies, statistics, and/or post-conflict peacebuilding processes.
Experience
  • Ten years’ experience in one of these fields: international relations, human rights, gender and conflict, gender and good governance.
  • Experience in the area of policy analysis in a post conflict setting.
Language Requirements
  • Excellent command of English, including analytical writing skills and presentation skills


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