International Consultant (Lead) for Mid-term Evaluation of Aspire to Innovate (a2i) Programme


Location : Dhaka (with field visits outside Dhaka), BANGLADESH
Application Deadline :31-May-22 (Midnight New York, USA)
Additional Category :Democratic Governance and Peacebuilding
Type of Contract :Individual Contract
Post Level :International Consultant
Languages Required :
English  

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.


Background

The Aspire to Innovate (a2i) Programme builds on the Government of Bangladesh’s efforts to introduce a citizen-centric culture of innovation in the civil service to improve public service delivery and make services more inclusive, accessible, affordable and reliable. This project is aligned with the government and a2i’s recent commendable efforts in creating digitally assisted prototype solutions to improve public services for supporting the development momentum of the country and addressing emerging development needs and challenges. This project aims to support the government in instilling those innovations and building up necessary institutional mechanisms so that efforts already made would be incentivized and scaled up to bring sustainable impact. In addition, this project intends to engage the private sector in this journey including making progress in emerging fintech platforms to foster broader partnership to attune the country with changes taking place in the contemporary world.

Project outcome:

Culture of citizen-centric innovation institutionalized, and accountability improved to accelerate SDG achievement in Bangladesh

With a particular focus on SDGs 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 8, 9, 10, 11, 16, 17 and associated targets, this project has three components:

  1. Institutionalizing Public Service Innovation and Improving Accountability: This component is concerned with simplifying, digitizing, and integrating government services to enable citizens and businesses to access them more quickly, affordably, and reliably through inclusive physical, online, mobile, and voice platforms. An integral part of this will be incentivizing and empowering civil servants, nurturing institutional mechanisms to enable continuous innovation of citizen-centric services, maturing a data-enabled policy environment and promoting a culture of integrity and accountability.
  2. Catalyzing Digital Financial Services & Fintech Innovations: This relates to catalyzing the development of a citizen-centered, secure and interoperable digital financial eco-system with business processes in place that deepens financial inclusion and offers innovative, pro-poor financial services that are accessible, affordable, and reliable.
  3. Incubating Private Sector-enabled Public Service Innovation: It will support private sector-enabled social innovations and entrepreneurship to identify and tackle public service delivery challenges by incubating and accelerating social enterprises. As appropriate, a focus will be on scaling up successful social enterprises through commercialization and/or policy advocacy.

Emergence of Covid and the Realignment of Project Interventions  

When the project started in January 2020, the whole world within months engulfed into the unprecedented event of Covid pandemic. Like many countries, the Government of Bangladesh imposed nationwide lock down three times. Because of the pandemic, public health was severely impacted, economies activities highly disrupted, employment opportunities depressed, some people lost their job, schools or education institutions went into prolong closure, etc. All of these have impacted lives and livelihoods and future aspirations of ordinary citizens and especially those of the poor and marginalized. Eventually, the Covid has redefined development needs and priorities of Bangladesh. In this context, a2i with the assistance of the government and other stakeholders repurposed and aliened its activities considerably and brought novelties in its digital platforms to help the country to prevent the spread of the pandemic, mitigate its adverse effects and help citizens to cope with new realities. Altogether the project has developed and implemented 33 digital assisted initiatives to prevent Covid infections and mitigate its adverse effects. It has created a number of dashboards and platforms for evidence-based decision making by the government and other stakeholders; facilitated delivery of health services to the infected people and citizens through digital means and platforms; ensured delivery of goods and services to citizens through e-commerce platform; redesigned the national hotline to receive food and daily needs requests from extremely needy people across the country during the lock down; created digital classes on Sangsad TV for primary, secondary and madrasha  students; offered online courses on e-learning platform; etc.    

The four-year project is going to enter into third year in January 2022. The project plans to end in December 2023 with potential extension. Therefore, the ‘‘Aspire to Innovate (a2i) Programme” is planning to recruit an International Consultant (Team Lead) for conducting its Mid-term evaluation and he or she will lead a team to conduct this Mid-term evaluation with National Consultant (Programmes & Operations) and National Consultant (Member/ Gender & LNOB) 

PROJECT INFORMATION

Project title

Aspire to Innovate (a2i) Programme

Atlas ID

00098086

Corporate outcome and output 

(CPD Outcome) Develop and implement improved social policies and programmes that focus on good governance, reduction of structural inequalities and advancement of vulnerable individuals and groups.

Country

Bangladesh

Region

Asia Pacific

Date project document signed

11 November 2019

Project dates

Start

Planned end

01 January 2020

31 December 2023

Project budget

USD 57,111,764

Project expenditure

USD 14,152,941 (Sept 2021)

Funding source

UNDP Bangladesh, Gates Foundation, Vital Strategies, UNICEF

Implementing party

Cabinet Division, Information and Communication Technology Division, UNDP Bangladesh

Evaluation Purpose, Objectives, and Scope

Purpose:

As the programme is at the mid-way of its implementation, a mid-term evaluation will assess its operations since inception and their realignment in the context of Covid 19 to determine whether the programme has been running effectively, efficiently, relevantly and sustainably. The evaluation would also help the programme to get an evidence-based and consultative analytical reflection on all three components. The primary purpose of the Mid-Term Evaluation is to review the progress of the a2i programme in line with the implementation strategies mentioned in the project document and achievements to date, document lessons learned, and propose ways forward to a2i, UNDP, the Government of Bangladesh, and relevant stakeholders to help the project to streamline its strategies and implementation modalities for the rest of the project period so that the project would be able to realize its pronounced aims and objectives. The evaluation should suggest/recommend any changes, additions or omissions that will help to redesign project’s implementation strategies, targets and sustainability of the initiatives including business model development.

Specific Objectives:

The specific objectives of this evaluation are to:                                                                                  

  • Assess the performance of the project in terms of the implementation processes, outputs and indicators, assumptions and risks specified in the Results Framework matrix and in the M&E Plan;
  • Evaluate the relevance, effectiveness, and efficiency of the project in influencing and contributing to shaping the national policies, plans, and programs in implementing national priorities and SDGs; and how this would be sustained beyond the end of this project;
  • Collect useful and evidence-based information on Covid induced interventions and check their relevance and effectiveness in line with the objectives of the project, document accompanying lessons learned and provide recommendations to help the project to make strategic changes in the context of ‘new normal’;
  • Assess project’s challenges and opportunities, including external factors/environment/political unrest/COVID-19 pandemic which have helped and/or hindered the growth in attaining the results of the project;
  • Review and address the knowledge gap on what worked and what have not worked in terms of sustainability and replication of project activities to scale up effective actions;
  • Document lessons learned, good practices, and identify action-oriented recommendations to improve several aspects of the implementation during remaining period of the project;
  • Assess measures, approaches, and initiatives already taken along with the commitments stakeholders and partners made regarding gender and mainstreaming of ‘living no one behind’ (LNOB) and provide recommendations to integrate those in the planning and implementation of the project.

The evaluation will focus on six key evaluation criteria: relevance, efficiency, effectiveness, impact, sustainability and coherence following the OECD evaluation criteria.

Scope of Evaluation/ Timing:

This mid-term evaluation covers the implementation period of the project from January 2020 (the beginning of the a2i 3rd phase) to March 2022. This mid-term evaluation shall be conducted from 10 June to 10 September 2022(Tentative).

Utilization:

The primary users of the evaluation results will be a2i, UNDP, Cabinet Division, ICT Division, partners and the relevant stakeholders, but the evaluation results will also be relevant to the other GoB ministries, development partners and donors.

After the evaluation, a2i and UNDP will consider the relevant  findings, conclusions and recommendations, and will prepare a systematic management response against  each of the recommendation and implement follow-up actions as per UNDP Evaluation Resource Center guidance/policies.


Duties and Responsibilities

Scope of Work and Timeline

The evaluation team consists of one international consultant (evaluator) and two national consultants (evaluators). An international consultant serves as a team leader. The scope of work for the international consultant will include but not  limited to:

  • Lead to conduct preliminary research, compile documentation, and complete analysis on areas covered by the evaluation;
  • Lead to develop the inception report comprised of elaboration of how each question will be answered along with the data collection plan and methodologies, sources of data and data collection and analysis procedures;
  • Lead to plan, support, and participate fully in the data collection mission, including by taking a lead role in the conduction of interviews;
  • Deliver high-quality analysis in regard to the relevance and effectiveness of the project interventions in brining efficiency and sustainability, institutionalizing public service innovations, improving accountability, incubating private sector-enabled public service innovation and catalyzing digital financial services & fintech innovations;
  • Lead to collect relevant  information on Covid induced interventions and check their relevance and effectiveness in line with the objectives of the project, document accompanying lessons learned and provide recommendations to help the project to make strategic changes in the context of ‘new normal’;
  • Organize evaluation team’s joint meetings, analyze key findings, come up with conclusions and recommendations and take lead roles in the preparation of the report;
  • Organize the stakeholder debriefing, as appropriate, and with the country office.
  • Lead to develop the draft evaluation report incorporating feedback from the country office.
  • Lead to finalize the draft evaluation report.

Phase

Scope of work of the consultant

Number of Days

Timing

Inception Phase

 

 

 

In this phase, the consultant is fully prepared before undertaking evaluation. It includes:

  • Conduct desk review of existing literature/documents, including project document, strategies developed by the project, reports, and documents developed by the project and write-ups on project’s initiatives;
  • Lead to draft an inception report, including detailed evaluation methodology, evaluation matrix, timeline, and data collection tools;
  • Guide to develop data collection tools (i.e., KII/ FGD checklists and short questionnaires);
  • Lead to organize an inception meeting to solicit feedback;
  • Revise and finalize the inception report and data collection tools

5 days

Within 2 weeks of signing the contract

Data Collection Phase

 

  • Guide to conduct Key Informant Interviews (KIIs)/ Focus Group Discussions (FGDs) with relevant stakeholders and partners, including relevant agencies in the GoB;
  • Lead to consult with relevant UNDP staffs, including the management;
  • Guide to collect data and information through document review
  • Take lead at internal team meetings for the consolidation of field level findings from the two National level consultants;
  • Analyze and finalize the findings and information from the field mission;
  • Provide debriefing to the UNDP CO/a2i and the stakeholders on the key findings

10 days

Within 6 weeks of signing the contract

Reporting Phase

  • Triangulate/ analyze findings from desk review, stakeholder interviews, KIIs and FGDs;
  • Guide the national consultants in analyzing findings;
  • Lead to prepare a draft mid-term evaluation report;
  • Lead to organize a meeting to share draft findings with UNDP and relevant stakeholders to solicit feedback;
  • Revise the draft evaluation report incorporating comments and feedback in collaboration with the national consultants;
  • Finalize and submit the final mid-term evaluation report in collaboration with the national consultants

11 Days

Within 12 weeks of signing the contract

Evaluation Criteria and Key Guiding Questions

The evaluation questions define the information that must be generated as a result of the evaluation process. The answers will provide key basis to the intended users of the evaluation in making informed decisions, taking actions or disseminating knowledge. While developing and reviewing the questions, the evaluation team should consider the preset results mentioned in the ProDoc and the issues of COVID interventions. Evaluation questions include but not limited to:

Relevance: The extent to which the interventions’ objective, purpose, and outcomes are consistent with the needs and interests of the people and the country.

  • To what extent the project’s design and strategies were relevant in helping the a2i programme management, UNDP CO, relevant ministries, and other national-international key stakeholders to increase accessibility of citizens into public services and ensure information rights of the people of Bangladesh? 
  • To what extent the design and strategies of the project were relevant to national priorities, UN priorities, CPD (2017-2021), UNDAF (2017-2021), national strategic plans of Bangladesh?
  • To what extent the theory of change applied in the project was relevant in serving the country's needs?  
  • Were the objectives, purpose and outcomes of project’s interventions including those of Covid initiatives effectively relevant and consistent with the needs and interests of the people and the country?
  • What have been the nature and quality of collaboration and partnership at the national and local level?

Effectiveness: Extent to which the outcomes of the development intervention have been achieved

  • To what extent has the project achieved the objectives and targets mentioned in the project document? (see annex 1: result framework)
  • What factors contributed to the achievement or non-achievement of project outcomes and outputs?  
  • Compared to 2019, to what extent have the a2i programme management, UNDP CO, relevant ministries, and other national-international key stakeholders contributed in ensuring accessibility of the citizens in public services and information rights of the people in Bangladesh? To what extent there have been changes that are linked to project interventions?   
  • To what extent digital services have been effective in helping the civil servants to promote delivery of services through digital means? How far has the project been effective in incentivizing and empowering civil servants, maturing a data-enabled policy environment, and promoting a culture of integrity and accountability?
  • Has the project been successful in creating awareness and demand for e-services, including those undertaken through Covid initiatives, amongst the citizens especially for the poor and underserved communities?
  • How far has the digitization been effective in extending emergency responses during normal period especially during Covid-19 period for ensuring nation-wide communication, coordination, planning and monitoring, surveillance of Covid and its risk mitigation; delivering essential health, education, and other essential services, fostering instructional resilience of government apparatus and health administration; and raising awareness of ordinary citizens to fight against Covid and cope with the changed realities? 
  • How effective have the digital services been in simplifying, digitizing, and integrating government services to enable citizens and businesses to access them more quickly, affordably, and reliably? Has the project been successful in establishing diversified access options to offer citizens greater convenience and control to get digital services, including Covid initiatives?
  • Has the project been able to assume citizen-centered, secured, and interoperable digital financial ecosystem with business processes to deepen financial inclusion? And how have the Covid initiatives been effectively considered in this ecosystem?
  • Has the project been successful in influencing the creation and reform of policies, legal and regulatory changes that were needed to support the project?
  • Has the project been successful in developing partnerships with different public and private organizations to launch and operate e/m-Service delivery initiatives (including COVID initiatives) and developing ICT infrastructure?

Efficiency: Extent to which resources/inputs (funds, time, human resources, etc.) have been turned into results.

  • To what extent have the project’s outputs been delivered on time with high quality?
  • To what extent has the project ensured value for money?
  • To what extent and in what ways has ownership - or the lack of it - by the implementing partner impacted the efficiency of the project?
  • To what extent were resource mobilization efforts successful? Was funding sufficient for the achievement of results?
  • To what extent has there been any identified synergy among UNDP initiatives/projects contributing to reduce costs and support results?
  • To what extent have project’s M&E system and result framework provided stream of data to the management to allow them to learn and adjust implementation of the project accordingly?
  • Has the project maintained any process documentation for highlighting and recording programmatic and policy-level changes?

Sustainability: Probability of the benefits of the intervention continuing in the long term

  • To what extent would the project achievements be sustained? What are the indicators of sustainability for these achievements, e.g., through requisite capacities (systems, structures, staffs, etc.)?  What are the challenges and opportunities?
  • To what extent are policy and regulatory frameworks in place that would support for the continuation of a2i Programme?
  • To what extent are the institutional mechanisms in place to sustain the impacts of project’s interventions?
  • Has the project been successful in enhancing the awareness and ownership among government officials at national and sub-national levels to sustain the a2i initiatives?
  • To what extent and in what ways has the project been able to develop ownership - or the lack of it - among relevant partners and stakeholders?  How have the partnerships with different stakeholders become effective to ensure sustainability of the initiatives?

Coherence: How well does the intervention fit?

  • To what extent is the intervention (including policies) coherent internally and externally?

Impact: What difference does the intervention make?

  • Has the project brought changes in the people's lives and communities stated in the results framework of the a2i ProDoc?
  • Have there been short/long term, positive/negative, intended/unintended changes in the target beneficiaries, communities, and duty bearers? How many have been benefited?
  • Has a2i introduces a clear support structure at organizational level for institutionalization and mainstreaming of digitalization and innovations? To what extent have an organizational structure and skill matrix developed and implemented?
  • Has the project been successful in reducing time-cost-visits (TCV) for citizens through its digital services and digital simplification initiatives?

Cross-Cutting Issues:

Human rights and gender aspects will be considered well in evaluation questions as well as the evaluation process. Gender analysis, including gender-disaggregated data, need to be incorporated in the evaluation.

Gender & LNOB:

  • Was the project able to accelerate the program towards human development and SDGs by advancing gender equality and women’s empowerment and LNOB, specifically disabilities, through its programmatic approaches and operationalization?
  • To what extent have strategic gender needs of women and men been addressed through the project, and has thus resulted in sustainable improvement of women’s rights and gender equality?
  • Was the program successfully able to reach its gender-specific target through its various initiatives?
    • Was the project successful at empowering women entrepreneurs through its Union Digital Centres? How successful was the program’s Women Innovation initiative in achieving its goals? How successful was the project’s skills development initiative in terms of empowering women through their training efforts?
  • How successful was the project’s disability focus initiatives to mainstreaming disability in program implementation?
  • Were the disability innovations funded by a2i scaled up to reach the benefits of the innovation to all the persons with disabilities across the country?
    • How disability and LNOB have been addressed in a2i products integrating them in the systems and portals?
    • How far are the digital services effective to increase the number of LNOB recipients of public service?
  • Could the project ensure gender-disaggregated data collection for all a2i initiatives?
  • Was a gender-specific compliance established in all current and new initiatives?

Lessons learned and way forward:

  • Have any good practices, success stories, lessons learned, or transferable examples been identified? 
    • Based on the achievements to the date, provide forward looking programmatic recommendations for UNDP CO support to the a2i programme management, relevant ministries and other relevant national/ international key stakeholders. What could be the potential programmatic modality and focus as a strategic way forward after the current project end date?
    • What were the main lessons learnt (good practices, success stories, and transferable examples) from the project that could be documented? What interventions worked and/or what didn’t work well
    • Measuring the achievements of the project, to what extent could the project’s interventions be scaled up or replicated in other areas.
    • During the implementation of the project, what were the challenges? What were the risks they assume with this evaluation? What was the mitigation plan?

Methodology

The evaluation team is expected to propose and determine a sound evaluation design and methodology (including detailed methodology to answer each evaluation Question) and submit it to UNDP in the inception report following a review of all key relevant documents and meetings with representatives of UNDP, a2i, Cabinet Division, and ICT Division. It is suggested that the evaluation should use a mixed-method approach – collecting and analyzing both qualitative and quantitative data using multiple sources in order to draw valid and evidence-based findings and conclusions and practical recommendations.

The evaluation team also needs to develop an evaluation matrix (template is attached in Annex 3 of this ToR) to clarify what types of data will be required to respond to which evaluation question and how those data will be collected.

Final decisions about the specific design and methods for the evaluation will be made through consultation among UNDP, a2i, consultants, and key stakeholders about what is appropriate and feasible to meet the evaluation purpose and objectives as well as answer the evaluation questions, given limitations of budget, time and data.

The field-level data should be collected through 2 to 3 field trips covering a total of approximately 10 days. The potential locations for the field travel will include the districts across Bangladesh where different interventions under a2i projects have been implemented.

Details of field-level data collection, including locations, timelines, and the number of field visits shall be proposed by the consultants in the inception report and will be determined during the inception phase of evaluation in consultation with UNDP and relevant stakeholders. Given the COVID-19 pandemic, field-level data collection will be conducted if there is no harm to an evaluator and all stakeholders in the field.

Data collection tools, including KII and FGD checklists/semi-structured questionnaires, need to be developed and used in the field-level data collection.

Methods to be used by the evaluation team to collect and analyze the required data shall include but not limited to:

Documents review: The evaluation team will review the project document along with the RRF of the project document, TAPP, UNDP AWP, Results framework of individual initiative, Annual & Quarterly progress reports, quarterly and annual expenditure reports, ROAR report, COVID-19 ROAR Report, minutes of Project Board Meetings, a2i Website, reviewing different portals and systems, publications, public documents, various publications published in different news media, blogs and any other national and international documents that represent a2i’s achievements. Relevant documents include but not limited to:

  • Annual Reports (2020-2021)
  • a2i project document
  • a2i-ii Mid-term evaluation report
  • UNDP Quarterly progress report
  • Country office project document
  • IMED Reports
  • Innovation Briefs
  • e-Government report (UNDESA)
  • Digital Service for All Manual
  • M&E Reports
  • TCV Studies
  • Results Frameworks of the initiatives
  • a2i Dashboard access to visit all the initiatives in details 
  • Research documents on various a2i programs

Stakeholder Consultations (Key Informant Interviews - KIIs): The evaluation team will consult with key stakeholders, including GoB, UNDP, Gates Foundation, UNICEF, and other development partners or funding authorities currently funding or previously funded, current and previous PSC & PIC members, UNDP Management, CSO representatives, media representatives etc. Moreover, for a constructive report, the evaluation team members may discuss anybody associated with the project. Furthermore, the team may analyze other sources of data and information relevant to the project to develop a report locally structured, containing evidence-based findings, lessons learned, challenges, risks with mitigation, and recommendations.

Focus Group Discussions (FGDs): The evaluation team shall conduct FGDs with relevant stakeholders/rights holders/duty bearers from government agencies, grassroots and national level civil society organizations, indigenous peoples ‘organizations, indigenous/ethnic minorities, excluded groups and PWDs, women, children, youths and other marginalized and disadvantaged groups, beneficiaries, both at national and local levels.

Others:

  • Data review and analysis of monitoring and other data sources and methods: ensure maximum validity, reliability of data (quality) and promote use; the evaluation team will ensure triangulation of the various data sources.
  • Gender and human rights lens. All evaluation products need to address gender, disability, and human rights issues
  • A short gender analysis along with LNOB on the data collected.
  • Analysis of HRP’s budgets and expenditures generated from Atlas.
  • Analysis and interpretation of qualitative and quantitative data available from various credible sources.

Detailed methodologies note for mid-term evaluation: In the inception report, the team will develop/finalize- 1) overall mid-term evaluation study strategies, 2) detailed work plan, 3) sampling methods for FGDs/KIIs, 4) data collection methodologies & protocols, 5) data collections tools and checklists 6) data quality control methods, 7) data analysis methodologies, and 8) gender and LNOB analysis plan. All of these are subject to approval/clearance from UNDP and a2i.

Sampling Framework for FGDs/KIIs: Based on sound social research methodologies, the team will develop sampling methods. Target samples have already been selected by UNDP/a2i. However, the evaluation team needs to choose the target groups whose data will be collected using valid sampling methods. Sampling may be done separately for different groups. The sampling methods are subject to approval/clearance from UNDP and a2i.

The evaluation team shall follow a participatory and consultative approach that ensures close engagement with the evaluation stakeholders, implementing partners and male and female direct beneficiaries. The data collection process should be participatory by engaging senior government officials, implementing and donor partners, project concerns, key stakeholders, and a wide cross-section of staff along with maintaining a gender equity approach.

Evaluation team needs to triangulate data and evidence with multiple sources to address evaluation questions. The final methodological approach, including the interview schedule and data used in the evaluation, should be clearly outlined in the inception report and thoroughly discussed and agreed upon between UNDP and a2i management and the consultants.

The current situation of the COVID-19 crisis in the country needs to be considered when proposing data collection tools. In case if the COVID-19 pandemic does not allow field-level data collection, the evaluation team should develop a methodology that takes into account the conduction of the evaluation virtually and remotely, including the use of remote interview methods and extended desk reviews, data analysis, surveys and evaluation questionnaires. In such a case, the international evaluator shall not come to Bangladesh. The evaluation team is expected to present alternative means of data collection as found viable. This should be detailed in the inception report and agreed with UNDP and relevant stakeholders during the inception phase. No stakeholders, consultants or UNDP staff should be put in harm’s way and safety is the key priority. For any meeting with different stakeholders or beneficiaries where physical presence would be necessary, the team will follow the advice of COVID-19 safety protocol accredited by the WHO safety guideline which delineates necessary precautions such as physical distancing, wearing mask, cleaning hands etc.

The final methodological approach including interview schedule, field visits and data to be used in the evaluation should be clearly outlined in the inception report and fully discussed and agreed upon between UNDP, stakeholders and the consultants.

Gender and Human Rights-based Approach

As part of the requirement, the evaluation must include an assessment of the extent to which the design, implementation, and results of the project have incorporated a gender equality perspective and a rights-based approach. The evaluators are requested to review UNEG’s Guidance in Integrating Human Rights and Gender Equality in Evaluation during the inception phase[1].

In addition, the methodology used in the mid-term evaluation, including data collection and analysis methods should be human rights and gender-sensitive to the greatest extent possible, with evaluation data and findings disaggregated by sex, ethnicity, age, etc. Detailed analysis on disaggregated data will be undertaken as part of the mid-term evaluation from which findings are consolidated to make recommendations and identify lessons learned for the enhanced gender-responsive and rights-based approach of the project.

This evaluation approach and methodology should consider different types of groups in the project intervention – women, youth, minorities, and vulnerable groups. Persons with disabilities (PwD) also need to be considered in the evaluation, following the new UNDP evaluation report checklist.

Evaluation questions shall extensively cover gender and human rights aspects (in Section E. Evaluation Questions of the ToR).

Expected Deliverables

The International Consultant (Lead), together with the National Consultants will be responsible for ensuring the following outputs/deliverables to UNDP Bangladesh as per the agreed work plan:

  1. Inception Report:

The evaluators will commence the evaluation process with a desk review and preliminary analysis of the available information provided by UNDP. Based on the ToR, after initial meetings with the UNDP, and the desk review, the evaluators should develop an inception report which will elaborate evaluation methodologies, including how each evaluation question will be answered along with proposed methods, proposed sources of data, and data collection and analysis procedures. The inception report will include the evaluation matrix using the template provided in Annex 3 and will also include a proposed timeline of activities and submission of deliverables. UNDP and a2i will review the inception report and provide comments for improvement. This report will serve as an initial point of agreement and understanding between the evaluation team and UNDP/a2i.

  1. Draft Evaluation Report:

The evaluation report will contain the same sections as the final report and shall follow the structure outlined in Annex 3/ Evaluation Report Template and Quality Standards (Page 56-60) of Section 4/ Evaluation Implementation and Use of UNDP Evaluation Guidelines (2021)[2]. The draft report will be reviewed by the a2i Programme and concern unit of UNDP Bangladesh. The draft report will ensure that each evaluation question is answered with in-depth analysis of information and back up the arguments with credible quantitative and/or qualitative evidences.

The quality of the evaluation report will be assessed by UNDP Bangladesh Country Office and UNDP Independent Evaluation Office (IEO).  Details of the IEO’s quality assessment of decentralized evaluations can be found in Section 6 (Page 9-13) of the UNDP Evaluation Guidelines[3]. The evaluators consider it carefully while drafting the evaluation report.

Presentation/Debriefing:

The International Consultant will lead all the meetings with key stakeholders, including UNDP and a2i, to present findings, conclusions and recommendations.

  1. Final Evaluation Report/ Data Collection Tools/ Audit Trail:

The final report will incorporate comments and feedback from the stakeholders including the feedback provided during the Presentation/Debriefing meeting. All comments and an evaluator’s response to each comment need to record in Audit Trail. Other relevant documents (i.e. data collection tools, checklists questionnaires, datasets (if any)) need to be submitted as well.

Evaluation Team Composition and Required Competencies

  1. Team Composition:

The evaluation team consists of one international consultant (evaluator) and two national consultants (evaluators). While an international evaluator shall serve as a team leader, a national evaluator (Programmes & Operations) will take the lead role in the field-level data collection and national evaluator (Member/ Gender & LNOB) will support the overall process of the evaluation and focus on gender and LNOB aspect of the mid-term evaluation.

An international evaluator shall be responsible for managing the overall evaluation process as a team lead, including evaluation design and implementation. An international evaluator is expected to come to Bangladesh if the COVID-19 pandemic is controlled. A national evaluator (Programmes & Operations) and a national evaluator (Member/ Gender & LNOB) shall be in charge of data collection in the field, and the international evaluator shall also provide technical guidance/support to the national consultants on the field-level data collection. The national evaluators shall prepare/ finalize an evaluation report with the international evaluator and ensure the quality of the report, incorporating feedback/ inputs from all relevant stakeholders.

A detailed workplan, including the division of labors needs to be included in the inception report and will be discussed with UNDP and key stakeholders during the inception phase.

[1] UNEG’s Guidance in Integrating Human Rights and Gender Equality in Evaluation, available at http://www.uneval.org/papersandpubs/documentdetail.jsp?doc_id=980

[2] Evaluation Report Template and Quality Standards of UNDP Evaluation Guidelines (2021), Section 4: Evaluation Implementation and Use, available at http://web.undp.org/evaluation/guideline/index.shtml

[3] Quality Assessment Questions of UNDP Evaluation Guidelines (2021), Section 6: Quality Assessment, available at http://web.undp.org/evaluation/guideline/index.shtml


Competencies

Corporate Competencies:

  • Demonstrates commitment to UNDP’s mission, vision and values
  • Knowledge in working with governance issues will be get advantages
  • Displays cultural, gender, religion, race, nationality and age sensitivity and adaptability
  • Familiar with and shares the vision of human development as laid out in the flagship HDR series

Functional Competencies:

  • Encourages Knowledge Sharing and Learning
  • Disseminates specialized knowledge and experience
  • Actively works towards continuing personal learning and development in one or more Practice Areas, acts on learning plan and applies newly acquired skills

Development and Operational Effectiveness:

  • Able to perform a variety of standard specialized and non-specialized tasks and work processes that are fully documented, researched, recorded and reported
  • Ability to review a variety of data, identify and adjust discrepancies, identify and resolve operational problems
  • Able to perform work of a confidential nature and handle a large volume of work
  • Ability to provide input to business process re-engineering, implementation of the new system

Leadership and Self-Management

  • Focuses on result for the client
  • Has demonstrable leadership skills.
  • Consistently approaches work with energy and a positive, constructive attitude
  • Remains calm, in control and good humored even under pressure
  • Demonstrates openness to change
  • Responds positively to feedback and differing points of view
  1. Skills
  • Demonstrated experience in applying UNDP and/or other prominent development partner approaches to planning, monitoring and evaluation


Required Skills and Experience

The qualifications below are for the International Consultant:

  • Minimum Master’s degree in Public Administration/ Public Policy/ Economics/ Development Studies/Political Science/ Social Science or related fields;
  • Demonstrated experience in leading evaluations, particularly for government-executed programmes, e.g. mid-term evaluation/end-line/outcome evaluation/impact evaluations;
  • Proven experience in ICT/e-Governance/Public Service Delivery/Digital Financial Services and Innovation;
  • At least 2 years of demonstrated experience in working with multilateral or bilateral donor/govt.-supported technical assistance projects

Special Note

The Consultant must have no previous involvement in the design and implementation of a2i programme. Any individual who has had prior involvement in the design and implementation of a2i programme or those who have been directly or indirectly related to the a2i programme are not eligible for this consultancy due to conflict of interests.

Evaluation Ethics

This evaluation will be conducted in accordance with the principles outlined in the UNEG ‘Ethical Guidelines for Evaluation[1]’. The consultant must safeguard the rights and confidentiality of information providers, interviewees, and stakeholders through measures to ensure compliance with legal and other relevant codes governing the collection of data and reporting on data. The consultant must also ensure the security of collected information before and after the evaluation and protocols to ensure anonymity and confidentiality of sources of information where that is expected. The information knowledge and data gathered in the evaluation process must also be solely used for the evaluation and not for other uses with the express authorization of UNDP and partners. Signed ‘Pledge of Ethical Conduct in Evaluation of the United Nations System’ needs to be attached in the Annex of the final evaluation report. A template can be downloaded from the link below on the footnote[2]. The evaluation team may refer to UNDP’s Dispute and wrongdoing resolution process and contact details[3] (Annex 3 of Section 4: Evaluation Implementation and Use of UNDP Evaluation Guidelines (2021), p. 55).

Implementation Arrangement, Supervision and Performance Evaluation:

The evaluation team will independently conduct the evaluation but shall take necessary assistance from a2i and UNDP. The Deputy Resident Representative and Assistant Resident Representative, UNDP Bangladesh, will be responsible for managing the evaluation throughout the entire process. The a2i team led by Policy Advisor and Programme Manager will provide necessary support in the evaluation's day-to-day operation. The evaluation team will also seek technical guidance from Programme Analyst at UNDP Democratic Governance cluster and M&E Analyst at UNDP Bangladesh Country Office. The final evaluation report needs to be cleared by the M&E Analyst at UNDP Bangladesh Country Office and approved by the Deputy Resident Representative, UNDP Bangladesh, and RBM/ M&E focal point, UNDP Bangkok Regional Hub.

Price Proposal and Schedule of Payments

A consultant must send a financial proposal based on a Lump Sum Amount. The total amount quoted shall be all-inclusive and include all costs components required to perform the deliverables identified in the TOR, including professional fee, travel costs, living allowance (if any work is to be done outside the IC´s duty station) and any other applicable cost to be incurred by the IC in completing the assignment. The contract price will be fixed output-based price regardless of the extension of the herein specified duration. Payments will be done upon completion of the deliverables/outputs and as per the below percentages:

The expected outputs, deliverables and payment schedule is as follows:

Deliverables/ Outputs

Estimated duration

Tentative Due Dates

Payment Schedule

Review and Approvals Required

Submission of an Inception Report, guide and finalize the detailed methodology note & evaluation matrix, and desk review & preliminary analysis of the available information provided by UNDP

5 days

18 June 2022

20%

Policy Advisor, a2i/ Programme Manager, a2i/

Deputy Resident Representative, UNDP Bangladesh/ Programme Manager, DG Cluster, UNDP Bangladesh/ /M&E Analyst, UNDP Bangladesh   

Review and finalize the draft report; submission of draft the report ensuring all evaluation questions are addressed and organize a meeting with UNDP and stakeholders for presenting key findings.

 

20 days

25 July 2022

45%

Submission of final evaluation report incorporating feedback and comments from UNDP and all relevant stakeholders

3 days

02 September 2022

35%

Total days consultant wise      

28 days

 

 

 

Travel:

All envisaged travel costs must be included in the financial proposal. This includes costs for field visits. 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. In the case of unforeseeable travel, payment of travel costs including tickets, lodging and terminal expenses should be agreed upon between the respective business unit and Individual Consultant, prior to travel and the cost incurred will be reimbursed.

A detailed workplan needs to be included in the inception report and it will be discussed with UNDP and key stakeholders during the inception phase.

In case if the COVID-19 pandemic does not allow field-level data collection, the international evaluator shall not come to Bangladesh. Alternative data collection will be employed. It will be finalized during the inception phase.

UNDP shall provide office space (no computer) and arrange various meetings, consultations, interviews and ensure access to key officials as mentioned in the proposed methodology. UNDP will bear the cost of such meetings (i.e., refreshments).

Evaluation of the proposal proposals

Evaluation Method and Criteria

Individual consultants will be evaluated based on the following methodology:

Cumulative analysis

The award of the contract shall be made to the individual consultant whose offer has been evaluated and determined as a) responsive/compliant/acceptable; and b) having received the highest score out of set of weighted technical criteria (70%). and financial criteria (30%). The financial score shall be computed as a ratio of the proposal being evaluated and the lowest priced proposal received by UNDP for the assignment.

Criteria

Max. Point

Academic Qualification

10

Demonstrated experience in leading evaluations, particularly for government-executed programmes, e.g. mid-term evaluation/end-line/ outcome evaluation/impact evaluations

25

Proven experience in ICT/Service Digitization/Public Service Delivery/and Innovation

25

Demonstrated experience in working with multilateral or bilateral donor/govt.-supported technical assistance projects

10

Financial

30

Total

100

Only candidates obtaining a minimum of 70 points would be considered for the Financial Evaluation.

Financial Evaluation (Total 30 marks)

All technical qualified proposals will be scored out of 30 based on the formula provided below. The maximum points (30) will be assigned to the lowest financial proposal. All other proposals received points according to the following formula:

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.

[1] UNEG, ‘Ethical Guidelines for Evaluation’, June 2020. Available at http://www.uneval.org/document/detail/2866

[2] ‘Pledge of Ethical Conduct in Evaluation of the United Nations System’. Available at http://uneval.org/document/detail/2866

[3] UNDP Evaluation dispute resolution process, UNDP Evaluation Guidelines (2021), Section 4: Evaluation Implementation and Use. Available at http://web.undp.org/evaluation/guideline/index.shtml

Recommended Presentation of Offer:

Interested individuals must submit the following documents/information to demonstrate their qualifications.

Duly accomplished Letter of Confirmation of Interest and Availability using the template provided by UNDP;

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;

Brief description of why the individual considers him/herself as the most suitable for the assignment and a methodology on how she/she will approach and complete the assignment.

Financial Proposal that indicates the all-inclusive fixed total contract price, supported by a breakdown of costs, as per template provided

Suppose an organization/company/institution employs an Offeror 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). In this case, the Offeror must indicate this at this point and ensure that all such costs are duly incorporated into the financial proposal submitted to UNDP. 

Note: The individual consultant who does not submit the above documents/requirements(which applicable) shall not be considered for further evaluation

 

Annex 1: Result Framework

Results Framework[1]

CPD Outcome:

Develop and implement improved social policies and programmes that focus on good governance, reduction of structural inequalities and advancement of vulnerable individuals and groups.

CPD Outputs:

Output 2.1. Civil society, interest groups, relevant government agencies and political parties haves tools and knowledge to set agendas and to develop platforms for building consensus on national issues.

Output 2.3. The Government has the capacity to develop policies and carry out sectoral and geographical interventions in districts where inequality of progress is evident.

Strategic Plan Outcomes:

Outcome 1. Advance Poverty Eradication in all its forms and dimensions

Outcome 2. Accelerate structural transformations for sustainable development

Project Title and Atlas Project Number

Aspire to Innovate (a2i) Programme

00098086

Outcome 1

Institutionalizing Public Service Innovation and Improving Accountability– Government continues innovation of sustainable citizen-centric services at national level for citizens to access simplified and digitized public and private services in a quicker, more affordable and reliable way.

Outputs

 

Output Indicators[2]

 

Data Source

 

Baseline

 

Targets

 

Data collection Methods & Risks

 

 

 

Value

Year

2019-2020

2020-2021

2021-2022

2022-2023

2023-2024

 

 

1.1: Government services simplified and digitized to enable citizens to access them more quickly, affordably and reliably.

1.1.a: # of services simplified and digitized for the citizen

a2i dashboard

370

Dec, 2018

670

1,070

1,230

1,400

1,500

System generated data

 

1.2: Choice of access options (physical, online, voice, smartphone) diversified to offer citizens greater convenience and control.

1.2.a: # of service access points to offer services to the citizen

a2i dashboard, Digital Center Management System

5,830

Dec, 2018

6,500

7,300

8,000

9,000

10,000

ekSheba system generated data

 

1.3: Multiple incentive models developed to fit into different organizational structures within government

1.3.a: # of incentive models tested/piloted

a2i dashboard

0

Dec, 2018

2

5

6

8

10

System generated data

 

1.4. Introduced a clear support structure at organizational level for continuous initiation and nurturing of innovative practices

1.4.a: # of innovative ideas funded

a2i dashboard, Idea Bank

240

Dec, 2018

290

340

390

440

500

System generated data

 

1.5 Standard of services improved by empowering citizens with means for redress of grievances against citizens’ charter

1.5.a: # of civil servants received training on grievance redressal

Training report

0

2019

2,850

7,600

12,350

16,150

19,000

System generated data

 

1.5.b: # of offices covered under grievance redressal system

a2i dashboard, Grievance Redress System

0

2019

2,850

7,600

12,350

16,150

19,000

System generated data

 

1.6 Facilitated experimentation and developed platforms on data, including data interoperability standards, to solve social and policy problems towards SDG acceleration

1.6.a: # of data experiments supported

 

 

a2i dashboard

0

2019

15

26

39

52

72

System generated data

 

1.6.b: # of govt. offices have dashboards with intelligent analytics and visualization developed

a2i dashboard

0

2019

20

70

130

180

250

System generated data

 

1.6.c: # of individuals (govt., private sector and academia) gained knowledge on data literacy, data standards, science, analytics and visualization

Training report

150

2019

400

600

820

1000

1300

System generated data

 

1.7 Initiated capacity development efforts to equip civil servants with citizen-centric innovation, change management, leadership and data-enabled policy making skills.

1.7.a: # of civil servants gained knowledge on citizen-centric innovation, change management, leadership and data-enabled policy making skills

 

 

Training report

10,000

Dec, 2018

11000

12500

13800

14500

17000

System generated data

 

Outcome 2:

Catalysing Digital Financial Services and Fintech Innovations - A citizen-centered, secure and interoperable digital financial ecosystem that deepens financial inclusion and offers innovative, pro-poor financial services

Outputs

Output Indicators

Data Source

Baseline

Targets

Data collection Methods & Risks

 

 

 

 

Value

Year

2019-2020

2020-2021

202-2022

2022-2023

2023-2024

 

 

2.1: Technical architecture and business process developed for digital payments

2.1.a: # of underserved citizens received digital G2P payments (in million)

a2i dashboard

1

Dec, 2018

5

10

17

22

24.75

DPS generated data

 

2.1.b: # of rural assisted e-commerce service points established

a2i dashboard

3200

Dec, 2018

11,200

19,200

27,200

35,200

36,000

ekShop system generated data

 

2.2: Developed and launched awareness campaigns to increase citizens’ understanding of digital payments

2.2.a: # of unions covered under the awareness campaigns on digital payments

a2i dashboard

1000

Dec, 2018

1500

2500

3500

4000

4500

ekSheba system generated data

 

2.3: Established Fintech Innovation Hub

2.3.a: # of innovative ideas received technical and financial support from Fintech Innovation Hub for experimentation

a2i dashboard

0

2019

5

10

20

40

60

System generated data

 

               

Outcome 3

Incubating Private Sector-enabled Public Service Innovations- Creation of a private-sector enabled social innovation ecosystem to improve public service delivery

Outputs

Output Indicators

Data Source

 

Baseline

Targets

Data collection Methods & Risks

Value

Year

2019-2020

2020-2021

2021-2022

2022-2023

2023-2024

3.1: Incubated private sector-enabled initiatives that prototype solutions using combinations of 4IR technologies to improve public service delivery

3.1. a: # of private sector initiatives prototyped for public service delivery

 

a2i dashboard

728

2019

1,510

1,845

3,426

5,272

6,000

System generated data

3.2:  Supported social innovators and entrepreneurs to strengthen their ability to open businesses and secure investment

3.2. a: # of social innovation receiving commercialization support

a2i dashboard

15

Dec, 2018

75

100

125

150

175

System generated data

3.3: Through 360° communications platforms, expanded awareness and participation of the youth in forming social enterprises to improve public service delivery

3.3.a: # of youths engaged over social media on identifying and addressing social challenges (in thousands)

 

a2i dashboard

100

Dec, 2018

200

400

600

800

1000

System generated data

            

Annex 2: Theory of Change: Theory of change will be shared during the kick-off meeting

The theory of change suggests that the project will contribute towards other national priorities including simplification and digitization of public services in rural areas and strengthening good governance in line with the aspirations and plans of establishing a Digital Bangladesh by 2021, SDGs by 2030 and Vision 2041 with an ‘Innovative Bangladesh’ global brand.

Annex 3: Evaluation Matrix template (sample)[3]

Relevant Evaluation Criteria

Key Questions

Specific Sub-questions

Data Sources

Data Collection Methods/ Tools

Indicators/ Success Standards

Methods for Data Analysis

 Ex) Relevance

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

[1] UNDP publishes its project information (indicators, baselines, targets and results) to meet the International Aid Transparency Initiative (IATI) standards.  Make sure that indicators are S.M.A.R.T. (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant and Time-bound), provide accurate baselines and targets underpinned by reliable evidence and data, and avoid acronyms so that external audience clearly understand the results of the project.

[2] It is recommended that projects use output indicators from the Strategic Plan IRRF, as relevant, in addition to project-specific results indicators. Indicators should be disaggregated by sex or for other targeted groups where relevant. Regarding training, minimum 30% female participants will be considered.

[3] UNDP Evaluation Guidelines (2021), Section 4: Evaluation Implementation and Use, Page 51, available at http://web.undp.org/evaluation/guideline/index.shtml



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