Consultant on Alternatives to Imprisonment in Sri Lanka- Consultant for an Assessment to review ‘Prison Classification System’ for the Department of Prisons - Reference No. IC/UNODCR/2021/60 (at UNODC, Sri Lanka)

Location : Colombo, SRI LANKA
Application Deadline :28-Sep-21 (Midnight New York, USA)
Type of Contract :Individual Contract
Post Level :National Consultant
Languages Required :
Duration of Initial Contract :20 days from October 2021 to December 2021.

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.

UNDP does not tolerate sexual exploitation and abuse, any kind of harassment, including sexual harassment, and discrimination. All selected candidates will, therefore, undergo rigorous reference and background checks.


There is a growing international recognition that insufficient use of alternatives to imprisonment and an excessive use of pre-trial detention and imprisonment are key drivers of the continuing growth of prison populations, prison overcrowding and inadequate prison conditions worldwide. Many countries, including Sri Lanka, rely heavily on imprisonment as the default or only means of criminal sanction. Overcrowded prisons and detention facilities serve as fertile breeding grounds for radicalization to violence, often rendering those sentenced for minor offences vulnerable to recruitment by violent extremist or terrorist groups.  Despite the existence of detailed international standards and norms, countries around the world are facing challenges in the use of non-custodial measures, including gaps in legal and policy frameworks, a lack of capacity and awareness among criminal justice practitioners or insufficient public awareness on the harmful effects of imprisonment and benefits of alternatives to imprisonment.


One of the most significant challenges of the Sri Lankan prison system is overcrowding. Many prisons operate at nearly 200% of their official capacity as well as understaffing and underfunding.  Although the Government of Sri Lanka has shown commitment to improving the situation in prisons and to considering the overall reform of the criminal justice system, the underlying problem of prison overcrowding and its challenges remain.


As part of its mandate to promote the implementation of the international standards and norms in the field of crime prevention and criminal justice, UNODC assists Member States in using non-custodial measures to pre-trial detention and imprisonment. In line with the initiatives by the Government of Sri Lanka, UNODC Regional Office of South Asia (ROSA) is implementing a project in Sri Lanka with an aim to promote the effective use of non-custodial measures in Sri Lanka. The objective of this project is to promote the effective use of non-custodial measures in appropriate cases to strengthen the Sri Lankan criminal justice system but also contribute significantly to preventing and countering radicalization and violent extremism.


The interventions will be based on relevant international standards and norms, namely the United Nations Standard Minimum Rules for Non-custodial Measures (the Tokyo Rules, 1990) and the United Nations Rules for the Treatment of Women Prisoners and Non-custodial Measures for Women Offenders (the Bangkok Rules, 2010), of which UNODC is a custodian.


Overall Objective of the Consultancy:

The overall objective of this assignment is to support project implementation in Sri Lanka by conducting an assessment to review ‘Prison Classification System in Sri Lankan Prisons’. The Assessment should include overview of a classification processes to determine the entire nature of the prison experience, including but not limited to where an inmate is housed, whom he or she is housed with, the programs and work assignments available to or required of an inmate, visitation rights, and the amount or type of movement an inmate has within a facility.




Duties and Responsibilities

Specific Tasks

Based on desk research, analysis and consultations the Consultant will prepare an assessment on ‘Prison Classification System’

  • Development of a draft assessment and obtain feedback from the Department of Prisons;
  • Finalise the assessment and present findings to the relevant stakeholders.


Expected Output/Deliverables & Milestones

Based on desk research, analysis and consultations the Consultant will prepare an assessment on ‘Prison Classification System in Sri Lankan Prisons’

  • Development of a draft Assessment and obtain feedback from the Department of Prisons;
  • Finalise the Assessment and present findings to the relevant stakeholders.



      Date of delivery

Percentage         payment

       Submission of timeline and methodology

      10 October 2021




        Submission of a draft Assessment

      25 October 2021

       Submission of a finalised Assessment

     15 November 2021

       Present findings to relevant stakeholders

     05 December 2021



  • Any kind of miscellaneous charges i.e. internet, phone etc. would not be reimbursed;
  • Please note proposals without the financial proposal will not be considered;
  • The Consultant will receive payment upon the satisfactory completion and submission of the relevant deliverables.



The envisaged time frame of the consultancy period of 20 days from 01 October 2021 to 05 December 2021. The total amount for the consultancy will be paid after the completion of deliverables and submission of final report.


Reporting and Communication

The consultant will report to National Programme Officer of UNODC Programme Office in Sri Lanka and Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice Officer in UNODC ROSA.


  • Demonstrates integrity by modelling the UNs values and ethical standards;
  • Promotes the vision, mission, and strategic goals of the UN;
  • Displays cultural, gender, religion, race, nationality and age sensitivity and adaptability
  • Strategic vision and strong technical and analytical capabilities;
  • Excellent organizational and management skills;
  • High level of self-management capacity and proactive self-drive under very low supervision
  • Ability to handle effectively multiple tasks without compromising quality, team spirit and positive working relationships;
  • Strong written, interpersonal and oral communication skills.



Required Skills and Experience


An advanced university degree (Master’s degree or equivalent) in law is required.  A first-level degree in similar fields in combination with five additional years of working experience may be accepted in lieu of the advanced degree.


Work Experience

  • At least 10 years of experience in the field of prison reforms, alternatives to imprisonment, non-custodial measures and some experience in South Asian context;
  • Excellent understanding of the emerging issues related to non-custodial measures in the penal reform sector;
  • Experience of having worked within the criminal justice sector;
  • Knowledge of and practical experience in conducting similar assignments.
  • Experience in the usage of computers and office software packages (MS Word, PowerPoint, Teams, etc.).
  • Excellent writing, editing, and oral communication skills in English.


Award of the contract:

The contract shall be awarded to the individual whose offer has been evaluated and determined as:

  • Responsive to the criterion outlined in the TOR.
  • Having received the highest score of a predetermined set of technical and financial criterion specific to the solicitation and based on cumulative criterion.


Technical Criteria weight - 70 marks

  • Educational Qualification - 20 points
  • Experience in project implementation in rule of law, academia and criminal justice field – 20 points
  • Experience in assessment development and research in the area of rule of law, criminal justice reforms and prison reforms.  –40 points
  • Experience of South Asian development context and working with the government and development partners in the region (in particular within Sri Lanka) - 20 points.


Financial Criteria weight - 30 marks

Technical and Financial Proposals to be submitted separately.


Only candidates obtaining a minimum of 49 points (70% of the total technical points) would be considered for the Financial Evaluation.


How to Apply

The application should contain:

  • Cover letter explaining why you are the most suitable candidate for the advertised position and a brief methodology on how you will approach and conduct the work;
  • Updated CV to include qualifications/competencies and relevant experience in similar projects and contact details of 3 professional referees who can certify your competencies, professionalism, quality of writing, presentation, and overall suitability to this TOR;
  • Individual consultants will be evaluated based on a combination of factors including cover letter, the credentials on offer and brief interview (optional) and the offer which gives the best value for money for the UNDP;
  • Please send the Financial Proposal separately to the following e-mail address:  stating the vacancy number/position  in the subject line.  Failing to provide correct vacancy number & Position would be a disqualification.



All Inclusive Lump Sum Fee: LKR (_______________________________________)

Amount in words: (Rs._________________________________________________)


Please refer the below link to access the template


Note: Payments will be based on invoices on achievement of agreed milestones i.e. upon delivery of the services specified in the TOR and certification of acceptance by the UNDP. The applicant must factor in all possible costs in his/her “All Inclusive Lump Sum Fee” including his/her consultancy and professional fee, board and lodging, and any other foreseeable costs in this exercise. No costs other than what has been indicated in the financial proposal will be paid or reimbursed to the consultant. UNDP will only pay for any unplanned travel outside of this TOR and Duty Station on actual basis and on submission of original bills/invoices and on prior agreement with UNDP officials. Daily per diem and costs for accommodation/meals/incidental expenses for such travel shall not exceed established local UNDP DSA rates.


For an Individual Contractor who is 65 years of age or older, and on an assignment requiring travel, be it for the purpose of arriving at the duty station or as an integral duty required travel under the TOR, a full medical examination and statement of fitness to work must be provided.  Such medical examination costs must be factored into the financial proposal above.


Contact information for queries related to the Request for Proposals:

For any clarification please contact:


UNDP is committed to achieving diversity within its workplace, and encourages all qualified applicants, irrespective of gender, nationality, disabilities, sexual orientation, culture, religious and ethnic backgrounds to apply. All applications will be treated in the strictest confidence and Qualified women are encouraged to apply.

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