National Specialist, Sustainable Production

Location : Home-based and Putrajaya, Malaysia, and mission travel to Sabah, MALAYSIA
Application Deadline :06-Dec-21 (Midnight New York, USA)
Time left :9d 8h 58m
Type of Contract :Individual Contract
Post Level :National Consultant
Languages Required :
Starting Date :
(date when the selected candidate is expected to start)
Duration of Initial Contract :15 November 2021 until 31 December 2022
Expected Duration of Assignment :50 days over a period of 15 months

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.


The GEF-7 delivery model incorporates three impact programmes which collectively address major drivers of environmental degradation and/or deliver multiple benefits across the many thematic dimensions the GEF is mandated to deliver. These Impact Programmes also contribute in significant ways to each one of GEF’s Focal Area Strategies while at the same time delivering multiple benefits across several Multilateral Environmental Agreements.


One of these impact programmes is the Food Systems, Land Use and Restoration Impact Programme (FOLUR IP), which recognizes that the environmental and sustainability challenges associated with food and commodity production systems require an integrated and multi-level approach working across local, national and global scale. Achieving this transition will require a holistic, system-wide approach integrating both horizontal (land and natural resources) and vertical (food value and supply chain) dimensions. Land degradation, declining agricultural productivity, malnutrition and rural poverty are interrelated problems that require a systems-level approach to planning, management, monitoring and decision making.


The “Integrated Landscape Management of Heart of Borneo landscapes in Sabah” is one of the child projects of the GEF-7 FOLUR IP. This project aims to transform land use planning and management in Sabah to contain the footprint of palm oil production and maintain high-value forest for environment and development benefits. This will be achieved through four interrelated components of work, to be undertaken in parallel:

  • Component 1: Development of integrated landscape management systems in Sabah
  • Component 2: Promotion of responsible value chains for palm oil and smallholder support
  • Component 3: Conservation and restoration of natural habitats through public-private-community partnerships
  • Component 4: Knowledge management and impact monitoring


UNDP Malaysia is currently seeking a qualified National Specialist on Sustainable Production and Farmer Support to support a team of consultants contributing to the delivery of interim PPG tasks (see below) and to develop individual funding proposals and project documents (ProDoc) and the corresponding individual CEO endorsement requests (CEO ER) to be submitted for endorsement to the GEF.

Duties and Responsibilities

Scope of Work


The National Specialist will support the international Project Preparation Grant (PPG) Team Leader and identified national and international counterparts together with UNDP Malaysia in conducting three important baseline studies and in designing the project interventions related to small-scale farming and extension support in the target landscapes.


Responsibilities and Deliverables:

The purpose of this assignment is to provide support in developing a technically sound and eligible project document and annexes that aligns with the Government of Malaysia’s relevant development priorities and policies as well as GEF7 programming directions and policies.


(A) Preparatory Technical Studies and Reviews:

Identify, prepare inputs and support the required analyses/studies, as agreed with the PPG Team Leader together with UNDP and identified national and international counterparts, including:

  • Review and update baseline analyses of palm oil value chains in Sabah
  • Scope out and identify the key local and national stakeholders to ensure the success of the project. Stakeholders include plantation companies, growers and supply chain network.
  • Deliverable to also include the following:
    • Understanding of the supply, demand and needs of local and global food companies and main distributors around agricultural commodities
    • Identify sustainability commitments, including the gaps, among key private sector companies and small-holders in Sabah
    • Identify main issue areas along the local supply chains
    • Identify main improvement potentials along the local supply chains
  • Review baseline evaluation of current multi-stakeholder oil palm platform in Sabah, assess its engagement needs and potential for more effective engagement platform
  • Analyse, map and categorize commodity producers and production
  • In coordination with other national consultants- review, select and finalize selection of sites for project interventions. This process must be done in consultation with Government partners, key stakeholders, UNDP country office and other identified consultants
  • Identify main drivers of unsustainable production and key interventions needed to transform production to be sustainable
  • Develop national and local public and private systems for farmer support to become sustainable
  • Develop strategies to link production with demand for local deforestation-free jurisdictions such as NDPE (no deforestation, no peat and no exploitation)
  • Identify financing needs for producers and provide support to Country Office on generating public sector and private sector co-finance
  • Provide inputs to the capacity development needs assessment and the preparation of the capacity development plan (template to be provided)
  • Provide input and support in developing guidelines and expected outcomes described in the project components and include them in the Project Document.


(B) Formulation of the Project Document (ProDoc), CEO Endorsement Request and Mandatory and Project Specific Annexes:

  • Review inputs and support the development of final PPG deliverables, as agreed with the PPG Team Leader.
  • Provide support in conducting a project conceptualization workshop based on theory of change methodology in Sabah with multiple stakeholder participation in an inclusive and participatory manner


(C) Inception and Validation Workshops:

Contribute to the inception and validation workshops; and support all necessary revisions that arise during the workshop, as appropriate.


(D) Final Deliverables:

  • Updated analytical report of commodity and other crop production in the Sabah and recommend interventions to transform to sustainable production
  • Sample survey of small-scale farming communities in target landscape especially selected intervention sites for sustainable farming & agroforestry – current practices, value chains and extension need
  • Feasibility study and barrier analysis on potential circular economy approaches for palm oil waste applications (including waste to energy generation, but also bio-fertilizer, biofuel, bio-char, biogas and biotech products) for revenue generation
  • Costed action plans for implementation
  • Support development of updated Terms of Reference (TOR) of technical consultancies for implementation 
  • Inputs into the capacity development plan, as required
  • In coordination with PPG Team Leader and UNDP, provide support in responses to revisions and comments from the GEF Secretariat, the Scientific and Technical Advisory Committee (STAP), the GEF Council and the regional office, with adjustments made to the project concept/PIF. Address and incorporate comments from identified national counterparts, UNDP CO and UNDP-GEF, so that the proposal meets the eligibility criteria mentioned




The methodology employs a number of investigative, analytical and consultative methods and tools to complete the tasks; and based on the needs:

  • Collect data from public domains and official documents including policies, legislation, strategies and plans e.g. RSPO, MSPO, etc.
  • Supplement the data analysis with literature review.
  • Active stakeholder consultations and engagements.



Handling of Data, Information and Documents

All data, information and documents obtained under this assignment is the property of the United Nations Development Programme and be treated as strictly confidential. No such information shall be used by the expert for any other purpose other than the preparation of deliverables.

All soft and hard copies of the data, information and documents must be returned to UNDP upon completion of this assignment.   




Deliverables/ Outputs

Indicative Days

Target Due Dates

Payment (%)

Review and Approvals Required

1. PPG inception workshop report: support PPG Team Leader with the preparation of the inception report

5 days

1 December 2021


UNDP CO Malaysia and UNDP-Global Environment Finance Regional Technical Advisor

2. Stakeholder consultation and validation workshop

  • Support PPG team leader with the preparation of validation workshop and report for GEF

5 days

 15 December 2021


UNDP CO Malaysia and UNDP-Global Environment Finance Regional Technical Advisor

3. Final draft of the UNDP-GEF Project Document with the mandatory annexes and the CEO Endorsement Request including  the following (integrated into an updated annex to the Project Document):

  • Commodity and value chain analysis
  • Small-scale farming communities
  • Feasibility study, barrier analysis and costed action plans

30 days

  28 February 2022


UNDP CO Malaysia and UNDP-Global Environment Finance Regional Technical Advisor

4. Submission of the documents to UNDP-GEF Directorate for technical clearance and submission to GEF SEC for CEO endorsement

5 days

  30  April 2022


UNDP CO Malaysia and UNDP-Global Environment Finance Regional Technical Advisor

5. Address comments from GEF

  • Completion of assignment upon approval of GEF SEC

5 days

  31 December 2022


UNDP CO Malaysia and UNDP-Global Environment Finance Regional Technical Advisor


50 days





Institutional Arrangement

The National Consultant will report to and seek approval and/or acceptance of deliverables from the Environmental Focal Point of UNDP Country Office in Malaysia.


The National Consultant is expected to liaise/interact/collaborate/meet with the UNDP Country Office in Malaysia, PPG Team Leader, UNDP-Global Environmental Finance Unit in Bangkok and HQ, and collaborate with the Sabah Forestry Department as the lead implementing government agency and other agencies etc.


DURATION of the work

The assignment will require up to 50 days starting from 15 November 2021 until 31 December 2022.



  • Home-based with occasional trips to Putrajaya. This assignment also requires one return trip of domestic travel to Sabah, estimated 6 – 10 days, the COVID-19 travel restrictions permitting;
  • Consultant has to complete the new mandatory security awareness training prior to commencement of travel: BSAFE;
  • Consultants are required to comply with the UN security directives set forth under
  • Individual Consultants are responsible for ensuring they have vaccinations/inoculations when travelling to certain countries, as designated by the UN Medical Director.
  • Consultants will be responsible for providing her/his own work station (i.e. laptop, internet, phone, scanner/printer, etc.) and must have access to reliable internet connection;
  • Given the global consultations to be undertaken during this assignment, the consultant is expected to be reasonably flexible with his/her availability for such consultations taking into consideration different time zones;



Corporate Competencies:


  • Demonstrates high moral integrity by modelling the UN’s values and ethical standards;
  • Displays cultural, gender, religion, race, nationality and age sensitivity and adaptability
  • Treats all people fairly without favouritism;
  • Fulfils all obligations to gender sensitivity and zero tolerance for sexual harassment.


Functional competencies:


  • Strong analytical, writing and communication skills.
  • Excellent financial and budgetary skills.
  • Ability to prepare concept note and proposal.
  • Strong motivation and ability to work and deliver under short deadlines.
  • Focuses on impact and result for the client and responds positively to critical feedback.
  • Able to work independently with little or no supervision.
  • Familiarity with UNDP and government strongly desired.
  • Due to the current COVID-19 travel restrictions, potential candidates currently based in Sabah may be given priority consideration should he/she has a minimal score difference with the top candidate who is not based in Sabah.


Required Skills and Experience

This assignment is open to Malaysian nationals and/or with permanent resident status.



Masters or higher degree in relevant field such as agriculture, environmental studies, development studies, economics or related field (10 points).



  • At least 5 years of professional experience in agricultural/development section in Malaysia (10 points).
  • Excellent knowledge and understanding of agricultural and commodity sector (10 points).
  • Have a sound understanding of local (Sabah) laws, regulations and issues on environmental and labour (10 points).
  • Awareness of NDPE requirements (no deforestation, no peat, no exploitation) (10 points) is an advantage.
  • An understanding of RSPO and other related sustainability standard requirements will be an advantage (10 points).
  • Experience in working with growers in agricultural sector will be an added advantage (10 points).


Language Requirement:

  • Excellent command of English and Bahasa Malaysia.



Interested individual applicants must submit the following documents/information to demonstrate their qualifications:

  1. Document 1 : Letter of Confirmation of Interest and Availability at
  2. Document 2: Technical Proposal: on how your qualifications, experience and list of track records can lead to successful deliverables of this assignment within the required timeframe, and provide a methodology and approach on how you will approach and conduct the assignments;
  3. Document 3: Financial Proposal at that indicates the all-inclusive fixed total contract price, supported by a breakdown of costs, as per template provided.  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.  
  4. Document 4: Personal CV or P11 indicating all past experience from similar projects, as well as the contact details (email and telephone number) of the Candidate and at least three (3) professional references
  5. Please submit this information in one file as Document 1, 2, 3,  and 4.The system will only accept ONE (1) attachment , please merge all documents and submit as one file.
  6. Applicants must reply to the mandatory questions asked by the system when submitting the application.
  7. Candidates who fail to submit all the information requested above will be disqualified.

How to Apply:

  • Kindly download the Letter of Confirmation of interest and availability, Financial Proposal Template and General Terms & Conditions mentioned below;
  • Read and agree to the General Terms & Conditions (refer to below link);
  • Click the ‘apply’ icon and complete what is required;
  • Scan all documents into 1 (One) pdf folder and then upload;
  • For clarification question, please email to The clarification question deadline is three (3) days before the closing. When emailing for clarification questions, please put "MyIC/2021/036"as the subject matter.


General terms & conditions to be downloaded:

Reimbursable Loan Agreement (RLA): A legal instrument between UNDP and a Company/institution, according to which, the latter makes available the services of an individual delivering time-bound and quantifiable outputs that are directly linked to payments

Incomplete proposals may not be considered. Only short-listed candidates may be contacted, and successful candidates will be notified.



  • Only those applications which are responsive and compliant will be evaluated;
  • Offers will be evaluated according to the Combined Scoring method – where the technical criteria will be weighted at 70% and the financial offer will be weighted at 30%;
  • The technical criteria (education, experience, languages will be based on a maximum 70 points. Only the top candidates scoring 50 points or higher from the review of the education, experience, languages will be considered for financial evaluation;
  • Financial score (max 30 points) shall be computed as a ratio of the proposal being evaluated and the lowest priced proposal of those technically qualified;
  • The financial proposal shall specify a lump sum fee, including breakdown per deliverable as outlined above.  In order to assist the requesting unit in the comparison of financial proposals, the financial proposal must additionally include a breakdown of this daily fee (including number of anticipated working days and all foreseeable expenses to carry out the assignment);
  • Applicant receiving the Highest Combined Score and has accepted UNDP’s General Terms and Conditions will be awarded the contract.

If you are experiencing difficulties with online job applications, please contact the eRecruit Helpdesk.

© 2016 United Nations Development Programme