Consultancy - Development of a Policy Brief of South-South Global Thinkers Network: Transformative power of South- South and Triangular Cooperation (SSTC) for digitalization

Location : Home-based
Application Deadline :23-Nov-21 (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)
Duration of Initial Contract :25 days

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.


Project Title: Policy Brief of South-South Global Thinkers Network: Transformative power of South- South and Triangular Cooperation (SSTC) for digitalization

Project Description  

The SSC Global Thinkers - A Global Coalition of Think Tank Networks for South-South and Triangular Cooperation (GCTTN SSTC) is a global project jointly implemented by UNOSSC and UNDP since January 2017. The project is concluding at the end of 2021 and is expected to continue with a 2nd phase starting in 2022. The purpose of this project is threefold:

1) Build partnership with major think tank networks to deepen the understanding of South-South and Triangular Cooperation (SSTC), including its methodologies, trends, policy issues and solutions for sustainable development.

2) Establish a global online platform that connects and enable various networks of Think Tanks and centers of excellence, to exchange knowledge, pool multidisciplinary expertise, and collaboratively conduct research and policy dialogues on scaling up SSTC for sustainable development.

3) Support capacity development of think tank networks to provide data informed analysis and advisory services to inform policy making and practice in SSTC to accelerate progress in the implementation of the 2030 Agenda through SSTC.

To achieve these objectives, the SSC Global Thinkers Network Project 2017 – 2021 have the following 3 outputs:

  • Output 1: Partnerships with Southern Think tank networks developed to deepen understanding of SSTC;
  • Output 2: Online platform established for exchanges, research studies, and policy dialogues.
  • Output 3: Think tank network capacity for data-informed analysis and advisory services strengthened.

The project is governed by a Steering Committee, consisting of representatives of founding partner institutions and major think tank networks. The Steering Committee provides guidance for mid-term and long-term strategies, annual work plans, and financial sustainability of the coalition. The UNOSSC and UNDP jointly provide the implementation support to the project as the Executive Secretariat, including the operational work of planning, budgeting, implementing, and monitoring of the work plan, including tracking use of and reporting on financial resources in accordance with UNDP rules.

The SSC Global Thinkers Project has provided an enabling environment for think tank networks from the South to produce and share relevant knowledge for sustainable development and scale up the impact of South-South and Triangular Cooperation (SSTC) in the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Since the beginning of the project, more than 200 research studies and knowledge products have been produced and published on the online platform – South-South Global Thinkers (SSGT) at

As the current project is expected to end in December 2021, the Steering Committee raised the need to explore ways to build on the achievements made so far by the Global Coalition and scout opportunities to enhance and sustain its work. The Steering Committee aims to explore how the research studies and knowledge products generated by the think tank networks can effectively inform national governments on implementing SSTC policies, programmes and projects, as well as translating the results, recommendations and knowledge into programming.

To this end, the Executive Secretariat proposes to consolidate the existing research and knowledge products from the think tank networks and to hire consultants to develop five policy briefs in the following 5 thematic areas (one policy brief per each thematic area) (based on synthesis from desk review of literature, thematic areas from UNDP’s COVID Offer 2.0, and feedback from the internal consultation from UNDP colleagues across all regions and all levels):

  1. Transformative power of SSTC for digitalization
  2. Greater potential of SSTC in addressing climate change
  3. SSC as a driver for regional integration and inter-regional collaboration
  4. Scale and impact of SSTC through institutional change
  5. Impact and assessment framework of Triangular Cooperation

The policy briefs should also be aligned with UNDP’s Signature Solutions, and with the UNDP’s COVID-19 2.0 Offer - Beyond Recovery: Towards 2030.

This consultancy will focus on the first thematic area -- Transformative power of SSTC for digitalization.

With the objective of providing insights and bringing evidence to advance progress in maximizing impact of SSTC, the policy briefs should target government officials, and will be published on the SSGT online platform, disseminated amongst government counterparts, UNDP country and regional offices and Bureaux, regional organizations, and other relevant stakeholders, through relevant events and other outreach activities. For UNDP Regional and Country Offices SSTC focal points, specific debriefing sessions with the consultants will be organized to present the policy briefs.

Duties and Responsibilities

After familiarizing with the objectives and strategies of SSTC and the Global Coalition, the consultant will be responsible for the following tasks:

  • Conduct mapping of the existing research studies and knowledge products on SSGT platform and, when not sufficient information available, from the SSGT think tank networks to identify and review relevant reports under the assigned thematic area above. An inception report that maps out the relevant studies and outlines the structure of the policy brief should be submitted.
  • Consolidate the research into policy briefs. Ensure the policy briefs can explain the issue/s, known causes, links or relationships, context, stakeholders, scope, impact and implication for SSTC development policy and practice as well as present compelling and feasible recommendation/s for SSTC implementation and/or support, informing key messages to policy makers from the analytical studies.
  • Draft policy briefs in non-academic language and laid-out using images, quotes, photographs, bullets to effectively convey specific evidence-based policy recommendations to policy makers. The Executive Secretariat will provide guidance to the consultants as needed with a generic template for the policy briefs.
  • Prepare a presentation to debrief relevant colleagues from HQ and regional levels.
  • Pre-identify relevant stakeholders (national governments, national development agencies in charge of SSTC, regional institutions and other relevant public policy makers) and relevant policies at regional and local levels, with a view of suggesting improvements in their way of implementing SSTC programmes, based on the evidence from the SSGT research and knowledge base.

Expected Outputs/Deliverables, Duration of the Work and Payment Scheme

The deliverables will be:

  1. a policy brief on Transformative power of SSTC for digitalization, no longer than 8 pages
  2. presentation of the policy brief. UNDP and UNOSSC will be responsible for disseminating the policy briefs with the identified stakeholders.

The total working days will be 25 days for the policy brief, starting ideally before the end of November. A detailed timeline with the deliverables will be included in the inception report, which will be agreed with the Executive Secretariat. The below table outlines the deliverables and expected working days.


Deliverables/ Outputs

No. of working days


Estimated Due Dates


Review and Approvals Required


% of payment

An inception report that maps out the relevant studies and outlines the structure of the policy brief


5 working days from contract signature

Review and approvals required by the Executive Secretariat


Draft policy brief


12 working days upon approval of the inception report


Final policy brief and presentation approved


8 working days upon feedback on the draft


Institutional Arrangements

  • The consultant will directly report to, on a weekly basis, the Policy Specialist at UNDP, as his/her supervisor. The supervisor will liaise with other members in the Executive Secretariat. The Executive Secretariat will ensure that the consultant has access to the relevant information and contacts and will ensure appropriate feedback from the Steering Committee on the draft strategic project review report. The supervisor is also responsible for performance management, including recording non-performance.
  • The Consultant will be responsible for providing her/his own laptop.

Payment Modality

  • Payments are based upon output, i.e. upon delivery of the services specified above and deliverables accepted and upon certification of satisfactory completion by the manager. 

Duty Station

  • The consultant will work home-based and will report to the supervisor once a week.


Corporate competencies:

  • Demonstrates commitment to UNDP’s mission, vision and values.
  • Displays cultural, gender, religion, race, nationality and age sensitivity and adaptability.
  • Highest standards of integrity, discretion, and loyalty.

Functional and technical competencies:

  • Strong analytical, research skills in the thematic areas for the policy briefs.
  • Familiarity with the various development contexts and a solid institutional and political understanding of SSTC at global, regional, and country levels.
  • Strong communication skills and ability to communicate with team members.
  • Ability to work from remote, with personal IT resources such as laptop and internet connection.

Required Skills and Experience


  • Masters’ Degree in international relation, international development, public policy, economics or related fields or its equivalent required.


  • At least five (5) years working experience in research and policy development, with demonstrated experience in research and analysis on digitalization required.
  • At least five (5) years’ experience/knowledge of development cooperation, especially SSTC required.
  • Proven ability to write clear and effective papers and reports demonstrated through the submitted sample required.


  • Fluency in English (oral and in writing) required.
  • Knowledge of a second UN language is considered an asset.

Application Procedure

The application package should contain the following documents (to be uploaded as one file):

  • CV or P-11 Form, indicating all experience from similar projects and specifying the relevant assignment period (from/to), as well as the email and telephone contacts of at least three (3) professional references.
  • Cover letter explaining why they are the most suitable for the work.
  • Link or writing sample of previous research and reports (max 5 pages).

Note: The above documents need to be scanned in one file and uploaded to the online application as one document.

Shortlisted candidates (ONLY) will be requested to submit a Financial Proposal.

  • The financial proposal shall specify a total lump sum amount, and payment terms around the specific and measurable deliverables of the TOR. Payments are based upon output, i.e., upon delivery of the services specified in the TOR, and deliverables accepted and certified by the technical manager.
  • The financial proposal must be all-inclusive and take into account various expenses that will be incurred during the contract, including: the daily professional fee; (excluding mission travel); living allowances at the duty station; communications, utilities and consumables; life, health and any other insurance; risks and inconveniences related to work under hardship and hazardous conditions (e.g., personal security needs, etc.), when applicable; and any other relevant expenses related to the performance of services under the contract.
  • This consultancy is a home-based assignment, therefore, there is no envisaged travel cost or any other costs relevant expenses above to join duty station/repatriation travel. 
  • In the case of unforeseeable travel requested by UNDP, payment of travel costs including tickets, lodging and terminal expenses should be agreed upon, between UNDP and Individual Consultant, prior to travel and will be reimbursed. In general, UNDP should 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.
  • If the Offeror 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 a Reimbursable Loan Agreement (RLA), the Offeror must indicate at this point, and ensure that all such costs are duly incorporated in the financial proposal submitted to UNDP.

The Financial Proposal is to be emailed as per the instruction in the separate email that will be sent to shortlisted candidates.

Criteria for Selection of the Best Offer or Evaluation process

Applicants are reviewed based on Required Skills and Experience stated above and based on the technical evaluation criteria outlined below. Applicants will be evaluated based on cumulative scoring. Candidate obtaining the highest combined scores of Technical and Financial evaluations will be considered to enter into contract with UNDP. When using this weighted scoring method, the award of the contract will be made to the individual consultant whose offer has been evaluated and determined as:

  • Being responsive/compliant/acceptable; and
  • Having received the highest score out of a pre-determined set of weighted technical and financial criteria specific to the solicitation where technical criteria weigh 70% and financial criteria/ proposal weighs 30%.

Technical Evaluation - Total 70% (70 points)

  • Criteria 1: Relevance of working experience (at least five (5) years) in research and policy development, with demonstrated experience in research and analysis on digitalization; Max. 25 points.
  • Criteria 2: Relevance of experience/knowledge of development cooperation, especially SSTC; Max 20 points.
  • Criteria 3: Quality of the sample required, demonstrating clear and effective writing; Max 15 points.
  • Criteria 4: Knowledge of a second UN language; Max 10 points.

Candidates obtaining a minimum of 70% (49 points) of the maximum obtainable points for the technical criteria (700 points) shall be considered for the financial evaluation.

Financial Evaluation – Total 30% (30 points)

Financial evaluation must obtain 70%.

The following formula will be used to evaluate financial proposal:

p = y (µ/z), where

p = points for the financial proposal being evaluated

y = maximum number of points for the financial proposal

µ = price of the lowest priced proposal

z = price of the proposal being evaluated

Contract Award

Candidate obtaining the highest combined scores in the combined score of Technical and Financial evaluation will be considered technically qualified and will be offered to enter into contract with UNDP.


Annexes (click on the hyperlink to access the documents):

Annex 1 - UNDP P-11 Form for ICs

Annex 2 - IC Contract Template

Annex 3 – IC General Terms and Conditions

Annex 4 – RLA Template

Any request for clarification must be sent by email to 

The UNDP Central Procurement Unit will respond by email and will send written copies of the response, including an explanation of the query without identifying the source of inquiry, to all applicants.

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