International Consultant – UNDAF Preparation - The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia

Location : Home-based and up to two (five-day) missions to Skopje, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia
Application Deadline :10-Aug-14 (Midnight New York, USA)
Additional Category :Management
Type of Contract :Individual Contract
Post Level :International Consultant
Languages Required :
Starting Date :
(date when the selected candidate is expected to start)
Expected Duration of Assignment :Estimated up to 40 expert days in the period August 2014-February2015


In 2014 and early 2015, the United Nations agencies in the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia are preparing a new United Nations Development Assistance Framework (UNDAF) for the 2016-2020 period. This five-year strategy will present the key development challenges that the country faces and, in line with national priorities, outline the UN activities that are designed to address them.

A cornerstone of this process is the Country Analysis (CA). The CA will present a concise analysis of the country’s development challenges and the areas in which the UN agencies are best prepared to offer support. The CA is to be prepared in August-October. The CA will rest on two main inputs:
  • A desk review of existing strategic documents, from both UN and non-UN sources; and
  • National consultations, which will rely both on discussions with important organizations and groups and on an innovative “foresight” exercise to collect input from the general public.
The CA is meant to be a concise, readable document of not more than 25 pages (20,000 words), including any illustrative graphs and statistical tables. It includes no original research but rather distills the findings of credible assessments and analysis by UN agencies, government bodies, and other parties (including, importantly, the European Commission). The main development challenges identified in the CA will be presented for review at a Strategic Prioritization Workshop, attended by both the UN team and key national counterparts. This review is meant to validate the CA findings and identify the areas where the UN has the capability to help in addressing specific challenges. This discussion will yield a limited number of outcomes under which all UN activities can be grouped.

The UNDAF itself will drafted after the strategic prioritization workshop. A strategic document of no more than 15 pages (12,000 words), the UNDAF is designed to serve as an orientation framework for all UN activity in the country over the 2016-2020 period. The UNDAF includes a results matrix and a set of indicators to be used to measure progress towards the chosen outcomes. It must incorporate five key UN programming principles: a human rights based approach; gender equality; environmental sustainability; capacity building and results-based management. In addition, it will need to reflect, where relevant, the basic principles of the “Delivering as One” approach.

The Office of the UN Resident Coordinator is recruiting an international consultant to prepare the Country Analysis for the UNDAF process. If the Country Analysis is of satisfactory quality and is endorsed by the UNCT, the consultant will also be asked to prepare the UNDAF document itself.

Templates and guidelines for both documents are available at: Sample CAs and UNDAFs that could be used as models will be shared with the selected consultant. The current UNDAF for the country, for 2010-2015, can be found at:

Duties and Responsibilities

The scope of work is divided into two parts: 1) the Country Analysis and 2) the UNDAF document. The consultant will be asked to prepare the UNDAF document only if the UN Country Team accepts the Country Analysis as satisfactory in quality and meeting all prescribed standards.

For the Country Analysis, the consultant will be engaged in the following stages of the process:
  • Collection of reference material and desk review: UNCT members, including nonresident agencies, will share with the consultant all assessments, evaluations, mid-term progress reports, surveys and studies that are relevant for the Country Analysis. The consultant will review this material and distill from it a three-page outline to be shared with the UNCT;
  • Country visit and interviews: After reviewing the documentation, the consultant will visit the country and conduct interviews with members of the UN team, Government counterparts and other key national stakeholders. These interviews will focus on defining the comparative advantage of the UN in promoting human development in the country;
  • Incorporation of online survey findings: The consultant will incorporate into the analysis the findings of an online “foresight” exercise that will involve up to 1,000 participants. The consultant will be supported in this by UN specialists in innovation/communication;
  • Document drafting: Based on the desk review and in-country interviews, the consultant will draft the Country Analysis text and revise it based on feedback from the UN Country Team and other stakeholders, including the regional Peer Support Group in Headquarters.  
Throughout the process, the consultant will be able to rely on the Office of the UN Resident Coordinator (RCO) for support and advice. While the timetable for the Country Analysis is tight, the timing of the country visit is flexible, and (if warranted) can take place before the desk review of documents is complete. The RCO can also facilitate earlier contacts with the UN Country Team via e-mail or Skype. Consultations will be encouraged to ensure identification of appropriate priorities.

Provided the Country Analysis is completed on time and the final draft is accepted by the UN Country Team, the consultant will be ask to proceed with the drafting of the UNDAF document itself.

Work on the UNDAF includes two related elements: 1) the Strategic Prioritization Review (SPR), at which development priorities are agreed with national counterparts, and 2) the drafting and revision of the UNDAF document itself. For this second phase of activity, the consultant will be expected to:
  •  Support the UN facilitator in defining an agenda for the SPR workshop based on the CA that will identify the development priorities recommended for inclusion in the UNDAF;
  •  Undertake second five-day mission to Skopje to attend and participate actively in the SPR Workshop (tentatively scheduled for end-October);
  • Following the workshop, work with the UNCT to agree on the structure of the UNDAF document and the main elements to be included in it;
  • Prepare a first draft of the UNDAF document and submit it for UNCT review;
  • Incorporate comments from the UNCT and submit a revised draft for review;
  • Finalize the UNDAF document after incorporating the comments from both the UNCT and relevant national counterparts.

Preparation of Country Analysis report:
  • By 31 August 2014 – complete desk review of all documentation and submit three-page CA outline, along with recommendations for any additional analysis or consultations
  • Early September 2014 – Five-day mission to Skopje to meet with the UN Country Team and key national counterparts to: assess the UN comparative advantages; discuss the outline; and agree on how to bridge any gaps in data or analysis.
  • By 30 September 2014 – submit a first draft of CA based on the desk review, feedback on the outline, in-country interviews and data from the “foresight” national consultation process
  • 15 October 2014 – submit final draft of CA, incorporating feedback from UNCT
Development and writing of UNDAF document:
  • End-October 2014 – Five-day mission to Skopje to attend the SPR workshop and develop the structure of the UNDAF document;
  • By 30 November 2014 – submit first draft of the UNDAF document;
  • By 31 December 2014 – submit revised draft of the UNDAF document;
  • By 31 January 2015 – submit final draft of the UNDAF document.
The above timetable for the consultant’s work is flexible and still open for discussion. The final timeline can be adjusted and agreed once the recruitment of the consultant is completed.

All deliverables will be reviewed by and require the approval of the UN Resident Coordinator.

Content and structure of the CA:

The CA document is expected to include:
  • Strategic analysis identifying the root causes of existing and emerging development challenges and their effects on different groups, particularly children, youth, women, persons with disabilities, ethnic minorities, displaced persons, migrants, asylum seekers and refugees;
  • Analysis supported by up-to-date data and statistics (where possible disaggregated by gender, age, ethnicity and other factors) and identifying any significant gaps in data;
  • An analysis of opportunities for (and obstacles to) free, active and meaningful participation in national governance and development processes and outcomes;
  • Identification of capacity gaps of rights holders to make claims and duty bearers to meet their obligations;
  • A substantive foundation for the new UNDAF that reflects both national priorities and all internationally agreed development goals and treaty obligations.
In not more than 20,000 words (25 pages, including tables and graphs) the CA will present the key issues to be addressed in the UNDAF formulation process, and will contain an executive summary with a synthesis of the major findings, followed by at least three sections (as described below):

Section 1: Introduction: The introduction should be brief, explaining the preparation process and scope of the CA, the efforts made to ensure national ownership of the process, and how the CA will add value to the development framework formulation.

Section 2: The Analysis: This section should contain a focused analysis of the national development situation. Major problems or challenges will be analyzed to identify trends, disparities and the most affected population groups. It will assess the level of implementation of national priorities, while also referring to internationally agreed development goals and country treaty obligations.

Section 3: Priority development problems and their common root causes: The final section will identify the priority development problems. Prioritization will guide where the UNCT can bring its comparative advantages to bear to make the biggest difference over the next five years, including:
  • The magnitude of the problem and the level of national commitment;
  • Problems with common underlying root causes where programmatic responses may yield multiple impacts;
  • Whether the UNCT has the comparative advantages to help the country address the problem;
  • The human resources and funds that are available, or might reasonably be mobilized;
  • The potential for alignment with key actors within government and civil society, who have decision-making power or who can influence national priorities and support the UNCT’s concerted action; and
  • Potential areas in which certain UN agencies could develop joint programmes.
Content and structure of the UNDAF document:

The UNDAF should satisfy the following criteria in terms of:
  • Quality and strategic positioning - present the UN’s comparative advantage
  • Focus and prioritization –clearly present the role of the UN in the country and its key deliverables over the next five years; define outcomes that “zoom in” on specific results; make a clear line of argumentation regarding the kind of intervention foreseen; prepare a results matrix that is a true planning instrument with expected results; present a budget against those results and an M&E plan; incorporate the five inter-related programming principles (human rights, gender equality, environmental sustainability, RBM, and capacity development).
  • Alignment - UNDAF outcomes relate to national priorities as expressed in national strategic documents; the UNDAF M&E system is aligned with the national monitoring system.
  • Logical framework - the number and range of UNDAF outcomes are realistic, given the strength of the UN presence and programme resources available; the logical chain of results (if-then) follows correctly; the M&E indicators are objective-verifiable indicators.
The UNDAF text should not exceed 12,000 words (15 pages, excluding annexes and the cover page). It should contain an Executive Summary and a Signature Page, and the six sections detailed below.

Section 1 – Introduction contains a brief narrative. This should pay particular attention to the position and the potential of the UN in the country, its comparative advantages, including key normative work being done by resident and non-resident UN agencies in relation to national development priorities, as well as the alignment of the UNDAF with the national planning process.

Section 2 – UNDAF Results comprises a narrative and a results matrix with a common budgetary framework. This forms the core of the document. The UNDAF results matrix is presented at Outcomes level (including indicators, baselines and targets). The narrative complements the results matrix, and should describe in narrative form: (i) The results expected from UNCT cooperation, a clear rationale for the choices made, their expected contribution to national development framework and global goals (MDGs and emerging SDGs); (ii) Why the UNCT and partners have focused on these results; and (iii) How the expected results will be achieved, and with whom.

The narrative further describes how each UNDAF outcome will make a contribution to the achievement of one or more selected priorities from the national development framework, internationally agreed development goals and treaty obligations. It provides the rationale for the choices made and describes why certain results were chosen over others, making reference to the Country Analysis, the national priorities, and the comparative advantages of the UNCT over other development actors, particularly for country capacity development. It provides a summary of the expected results from contributions of all UN agencies, including specialized agencies and non-resident agencies. In particular, this section highlights the anticipated synergies between the agencies for the achievement of UNDAF outcomes, and describes any joint programmes.

The narrative also identifies the government and/or other partners, including South-South partners, that are expected to contribute to the achievement of UNDAF results. It also summarizes the coordination mechanisms for working with partners and for promoting greater national ownership and capacity.

Section 3 – Initiatives outside the UNDAF results matrix describes agency-supported activities that respond to specific country demands but which fall outside the common results matrix of the UNDAF. The initiatives and expected results are briefly described, along with the agency responsible, and the estimated budget and timeline.

Section 4 – Estimated resource requirements includes a Common Budgetary Framework, which provides an estimation of required resources, resources available and committed, and funding gap over the full UNDAF cycle. It provides the basis for setting targets for joint resource mobilization to cover the funding gap. Technical cooperation or contributions in-kind should be indicated in terms of their equivalent monetary value, taking care not to double-count funding obtained through other UN agencies. The Common Budgetary Framework is further detailed as part of the Joint Work Plan(s).

Section 5 – Implementation: For each outcome, this section describes the specific coordination, management and partnership arrangements that are needed for success. In line with the focus on capacity development, these arrangements support the use of national systems for implementation, management and monitoring based on internationally recognized standards and good practice.

Section 6 – Monitoring and Evaluation: This section explains how the UNCT and partners will monitor and report on UNDAF achievements, and how they will evaluate the effectiveness of the UNDAF as a contribution to the national development framework.

Annexed Results matrix with the relevant outputs and outputs’ indicators (with baseline and targets), in support of the UNDAF outcomes, which will later be reflected in the Joint Work Plan/s and/or agency specific workplans.


  • Outstanding communication (spoken and written) skills, including the ability to write reports, conduct consultations and interviews and to articulate ideas in a clear and concise style;
  • Good knowledge of the UN system and UN common country programming processes (CA/UNDAF);
  • Ability to review and synthesize large amounts of information rapidly, and to distinguish major trends from minor details;
  • Ability to conceptualize and analyze problems to identify key issues, underlying problems, and how they relate;
  • Facility with statistical data and knowledge of human rights and gender equality approaches;
  • Familiarity with indicators and monitoring and evaluation methodologies;
  • Ability to respond positively to critical feedback and differing points of view;
  • Ability to handle a large volume of work under time constraints;
  • Focus on client satisfaction;
  • Ability to share knowledge and experience and provide helpful feedback and advice. 

Required Skills and Experience

  • Advanced University degree in international development, economics, social sciences or related field.


  • 3 years prior experience in the region, with experience in the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia a distinct asset;
  • Familiarity with development issues in an EU accession context;
  • Demonstrated knowledge of UN agency mandates and activities; direct experience of UN programming at the country level; familiarity with the UNDAF process and the Delivering as One modality;
  • Knowledge of, and experience in applying, qualitative and quantitative analytical methods;
  • Technical competence in complex analysis involving the use of mixed methods.


  • Fluency in spoken and written English;
  • Knowledge of Balkan languages is an asset.
Duration of assignment:

The assignment will be completed in the period from August 2014 to February 2015. The overall duration of work has been estimated to not exceed 40 days, including two five-day missions to Skopje and related desk-work to review the required documentation and to finalize the reporting.

The contractor will issue the contract in two lots:
  • Preparation of the Country Analysis report (deliverable 1) and
  • Development and writing of the UNDAF (deliverable 2).
The second lot of the contract will be subject to satisfactory completion of the first lot.  

Application procedure:

Interested individual consultants should submit the following documents:
  • Achievement-based CV, including: Summary of past experience with UN joint programming and  Summary of past experience in the country and/or region;
  • Description of up to 500 words of a development challenge facing the country;
  • Financial offer containing two lump sums in USD for the two deliverables specified in the TOR, and including a breakdown of each lump sum into number of anticipated working days, consultancy fee per day and costs for travel and any other expected expenditures.

The consultant will report to the UN Resident Coordinator through the UN Coordination Officer, a.i. and the deliverables and feedback required will be provided in line with the milestones noted above.

Payments schedule:

Payment shall be made in accordance with the financial offer of the successful applicant:
  •  Upon acceptance of the final draft of the Country Analysis, and, if contract is extended;
  •  Upon acceptance of the final draft of the UNDAF document.
Evaluation of the candidates:

Individual consultants will be evaluated using the cumulative analysis method. The award of the contract will be made to the applicant whose offer has been evaluated and determined as:
  • Responsive/compliant/acceptable; and
  • Scoring highest against a set of weighted technical and financial criteria (see below).
The technical evaluation criteria are:
  • Background and educational qualifications as defined in the ToR (up to 25 points);
  • Practical experience in UN joint work/common country programming (up to 25 points);
  • Brief description of a development challenge facing the country (up to 25 points);
  • Experience in the region/knowledge of development issues in the country (up to 25 points).
The financial evaluation criterion is the lump-sum USD total for the two lots of the bid.
Only candidates obtaining at least 49 points in the technical evaluation will be considered for the financial evaluation. Candidates will then be scored in a cumulative weighted system, with the technical evaluation criteria assessed at 70% of the score and the financial evaluation at 30%.

UNDP is committed to achieving workforce diversity in terms of gender, nationality and culture. Individuals from minority groups, indigenous groups and persons with disabilities are equally encouraged to apply. All applications will be treated with the strictest confidence.

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