To engage Project Evaluation Expert to conduct the final evaluation of the regional project "Strengthening of Regional Cooperation on Gender Mainstreaming in Security Sector Reform in the Western Balkans" (Phases I and II).
To contribute to the advancement of gender equality in security sector reform processes in the Western Balkans by evaluating the regional project results.
The United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, adopted in 2015, affirms that sustainable development, peace, and security are inextricably linked. Women, peace and security (WPS) agenda and related UN Security Council resolutions adopted between 2000 and 2020 emphasize the key role of women in forging and maintaining peace. To ensure continuous progress, preserve the gains, and pave the way for long-term sustainability that includes harmonization with the relevant international standards, as well as the EU legislative and regulatory framework, focused support was provided to the systems of defence of four Western Balkans countries: Bosnia and Herzegovina (BIH), Montenegro, the Republic of North Macedonia, and the Republic of Serbia.
The United Nations Development Programme Istanbul Regional Hub (UNDP IRH) / South Eastern and Eastern Europe Clearinghouse for the Control of Small Arms and Light Weapons (henceforth: UNDP SEESAC) is a joint initiative of UNDP and the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), with 20 years of experience in Southeast Europe (SEE) in strengthening knowledge sharing, information exchange, standardization and cooperation on SALW control, as well as integrating a gender perspective into the security sector reform processes and SALW control. Within this broader framework, the regional project "Strengthening of Regional Cooperation on Gender Mainstreaming in Security Sector Reform in the Western Balkans" has a decade-long track record of supporting systems of defence in the Western Balkans in integrating gender in security sector reform. This project, which belongs to a wider UNDP SEESAC portfolio, supports four Western Balkans countries (Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, North Macedonia and Serbia) to work towards fulfilling their global SDG commitments by directly contributing to SDG #16, dedicated to building effective, accountable, and inclusive institutions at all levels, and SDG #5, on achieving gender equality as "necessary foundation for a peaceful, prosperous and sustainable world". The project contributes to the UNDP's Regional Programme outcome No. 3 – "Building resilience to shocks and crises through enhanced prevention and risk-informed development," notably output 3.3. – "Regional cooperation enables national systems to ensure the restoration of justice institutions, redress mechanisms and community security, including armed violence reduction and small arms and light weapons (SALW) control." Ultimately, the project envisages the Western Balkans as an exporter of security in Europe and a unique source of expertise on achieving gender equality in the military worldwide.
UNDP SEESAC is recognized for its ability to deliver results by working closely with relevant partners through a regional approach to tackle the most challenging issues through the facilitation of networking, standardization, information sharing, and knowledge exchange. UNDP SEESAC has established itself as a trusted and valued partner for national authorities, donors, and the wider international community in the Western Balkans and beyond.
With the majority of team members based in Belgrade, UNDP SEESAC supports authorities throughout SEE, including Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, Moldova, Montenegro, North Macedonia, and Serbia, as well as, to a lesser extent, Ukraine. The regional project "Strengthening of Regional Cooperation on Gender Mainstreaming in Security Sector Reform in the Western Balkans" supports regional cooperation as well as tailored country-level activities in the four above-mentioned Western Balkans countries while also sharing knowledge on demand with defence sectors in Albania, Georgia, as well as countries that participate in SEEMIC, which is facilitated by RCC.
All of the project partners are RCC participants. RCC provides a framework that facilitates the initiation and implementation of regional processes and activities while providing the flexibility to have various partners. Regional ownership is ensured through the RCC (politically) as well as the Regional Security Sector Reform platform (RSSRP), including regular regional meetings (technically), which provide opportunities for the representatives of the four Ministries of Defence and Armed Forces to provide strategic guidance, exchange information, and agree on initiatives and requests for UNDP SEESAC support.
About the project
Achieving gender equality in the military is critical to ensuring the safety and security of all citizens. Promoting gender equality and integrating a gender perspective in the military is not only the right thing but also the smart thing to do, keeping in mind the complex security challenges in today's world. The WPS agenda recognizes women as critical actors in achieving and sustaining peace and security. Gender equality is central to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and key to achieving sustainable development goals (SDGs). Countries of the Western Balkans subscribe to both the WPS agenda and SDGs. UNDP SEESAC facilitates regional cooperation on integrating a gender perspective in the security sector among the Ministries of Defence of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, the Republic of North Macedonia, and the Republic of Serbia since 2012. UNDP SEESAC established excellent cooperation with the Ministries of Defence (MoDs) in the Western Balkans through the implementation of the regional project Strengthening of Regional Cooperation on Gender Mainstreaming in Security Sector Reform in the Western Balkans (hereinafter – the project). The second phase (2018 – 2023) of the project dovetails Phase I, implemented in the period 2012-2016. The project has been conceptualized upon request and in close consultation with the MoDs of the four participating jurisdictions in the Western Balkans.
Phase I of the project initiated the transformational gender equality processes in the MoDs and Armed Forces (AFs). The project strengthened the regional cooperation on gender equality in the military through regular regional meetings that enabled networking, knowledge, and information exchange among the representatives of Gender Equality Mechanisms (GEMs), decision-makers, and military commanders. Through regional cooperation, the MoDs strengthened GEMs' capacities to implement practical solutions to advance gender equality and increased evidence-based insight into the position of women in the AFs. This action enabled, inter alia, support for the professional development of women in the military and the enhancement of working conditions to put women on par with their men colleagues. An overall increase in gender awareness in the military was achieved through establishing a Regional network of 77 gender military trainers who organized briefings and seminars for over 4,700 military personnel in Phase I and continued this important work in Phase II. The project's unique approach enabled the establishment of a regional knowledge exchange platform on gender equality in the military, an example not known in any other region in the world, generating impact beyond the Western Balkans. Since its establishment in 2014, the Regional Network of gender military trainers has continued to support the delivery of gender training through the Regional Security Sector Reform Platform, a vehicle for the transfer of expertise to the other countries of Europe, the Commonwealth of Independent States, and beyond.
Notwithstanding advances achieved by the MoDs and the AFs in the Western Balkans, women remained underrepresented and unequally treated in the military. Challenges included limited capacities for gender-sensitive analysis and evidence-based policymaking, the low capability of institutions to address gender-based discrimination timely and adequately, and a lack of shared understanding of how to integrate the gender perspective in military education. Based on the needs identified, Phase II of the project continued fostering both regional and national level activities through support for (1) Gender-responsive and evidence-based policy development and implementation; and (2) Improved integration of women in the military through gender sensitization and integrating a gender perspective in military education and training.
The project has been financially supported by the Kingdom of Norway through NOK 13.5 million (US$ 2.25 million) in Phase I, and NOK 19.5 million (US$ 2.22 million) in Phase II, the latter contribution ending at the end of June 2023. The Slovak Republic supported Phase II of the project with EUR 0.3 million (US$ 0.38 million), whereby these funds remain available till the end of December 2024.
The project information is summarized in the table below:
Strengthening of Regional Cooperation on Gender Mainstreaming in Security Sector Reform in the Western Balkans (Second Phase)
00113253 – Women in the Military 2
Corporate outcome and output
Regional Programme for Europe and the CIS (2018-2021):
Outcome 3. Resilience Built to Respond to Systemic Uncertainty and Risk
Countries and territories
Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Serbia
Date project document signed
Phase II: 22 November 2018
Phase I: 08 November 2011
15 December 2018
30 June 2023
Phase I: Kingdom of Norway US$ 2.25 million
Phase II: Kingdom of Norway US$ 2.22 million
Slovak Republic US$ 0.38 million
Project expenditure at the time of evaluation
Phase I: US$ 1,251,750.33 (expenditures recorded since 2015 when the project was transferred from the CO Serbia to the IRH implementation. Remaining overall project balance for the first phase in the amount of US$ 31,862.67 reimbursed to the donor).
Phase II: US$ 2,152,304.55
Governments of Norway (funds allocated until the end of June 2023) and the Slovak Republic (funds allocated until the end of December 2024)
UNDP IRH, through UNDP SEESAC, with the Ministries of Defence and Armed Forces of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, the Republic of North Macedonia, and the Republic of Serbia as responsible parties.
 References to Kosovo shall be understood to be in the context of Security Council resolution 1244 (1999).
 South East Europe Military Intelligence Chiefs’ Forum (SEEMIC)
 At the request of RCC, UNDP SEESAC delivered two online gender awareness seminars for security sector representatives from Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Greece, Moldova, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Romania, Serbia, Slovenia, and Türkiye.
 UNDP SEESAC established the Regional Security Sector Reform Platform (RSSRP) to facilitate the transfer of knowledge and expertise on niche security sector reform themes from SEE to the rest of Europe and the Commonwealth of Independent States (ECIS) region and further afield.
 UNDP SEESAC has extensive experience working in SEE. With a result-oriented mode of operation, SEESAC identifies relevant regional issues, collects baseline data, ensures political support from the national stakeholders, secures funding, and implements the envisaged activities ensuring strong national ownership. The implementation at the regional level brings added value through coordination, experience, and best practices sharing, as well as the regional and national level top-notch policy research.
 The project’s first phase was implemented with the financial support of the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
 The number of gender military trainers is changing due to the turnover of staff – this is the status from June 2022.
 The Slovak funding for this regional project comes from UNDP -Slovakia Partnership Effective Development Solutions for SDGs (00111827) which is ending on 31 December 2024.
Project implementation approach
The project was established to act as a regional cooperation facilitation mechanism for the integration of a gender perspective in the military. The project foresaw two main outcomes:
- Outcome 1: Strengthened capacities for gender-responsive and evidence-based policy development and implementation - aiming to further institutionalize GEMs, strengthen the capacities of the MoDs for gender-responsive policymaking and implementation and enhance their response to gender-based discrimination, sexual harassment, and abuse. This outcome is being achieved through information sharing, knowledge exchange, learning grounded in regional meetings, and support for the implementation of demand-driven small-scale projects.
- Outcome 2: Improved integration of women into the Armed Forces in the Western Balkans through increasing gender awareness and revision of the military education curricula - aiming to advance gender awareness in the MoDs and AFs through the Regional Network of gender military trainers and to mainstream gender in military education and training.
Management arrangements: The project is implemented by UNDP IRH, through UNDP SEESAC. It is managed by the SEESAC Project Manager, who acts as the regional project manager. UNDP Country Offices in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, North Macedonia, and Serbia are regularly informed about the implementation of the project, and the participation of MoDs in regional activities and at the country level. UNDP SEESAC supports the overall coordination of the regional project based on continuous consultations with the four participating MoDs.
Overall, the project facilitated knowledge and experience exchange and moved the needle-related to gender equality in the military. The main achievements include: (i) strengthened regional cooperation on gender equality in MoDs and AFs in the Western Balkans; (ii) increased capacities of Human Resources Departments in the MoDs and AFs to develop gender-responsive policies based on the recommendations of the two regional studies on the position of women in the AFs in the Western Balkans; (iii) raised gender awareness of military and civilian staff in MoDs and AFs through the regional gender military trainers network; and (iv) increased representation of women in AFs in the Western Balkans from 3% to 6% in 2012, from 6% to 9% in 2019.
During Phase II, the regional cooperation platform continued functioning as the project's backbone, persistently demonstrating the benefits of regional information and knowledge exchange on gender perspectives in the military. A total of 15 regional meetings of Gender Equality Mechanisms in the MoDs (RGEMs) were organized throughout both phases of the project (six were organized in Phase II), resulting in the exchange of relevant information and joint activities on policy research and promotion of gender equality.
Close cooperation of four MoDs on gender perspective in the military resulted in the Ministerial Declaration on Support for Gender Equality in Security Sector Reform in the Western Balkans signed in December 2021 at the Ministerial conference A Way Forward on Gender Equality in the Defence Sector in the Western Balkans.
MoDs strengthened capabilities for gender-responsive and evidence-based policy development based on the findings and recommendations of the Regional Youth Perception Survey on values and attitudes while considering future professions with specific emphasis on gender-related aspects focusing on a career in the military, and the 2nd Regional Study - The Position of Women in the Armed Forces in the Western Balkans, which identifies key progress and gaps in ensuring the equal position of women and men in the military.
Additionally, the MoDs strengthened internal capacities to efficiently respond to gender-based discrimination, sexual harassment, and abuse through data collection and analysis conducted for the Regional Handbook on Preventing and Responding to Gender-Based Discrimination, Sexual Harassment, and Abuse and the implementation of the demand-driven country-level small-scale project.
A greater understanding of the importance of integrating a gender perspective in military education was achieved through the development of The Regional Baseline Study on Integrating A Gender Perspective in Military Education and Training developed jointly by the Ministries on the attained level of gender in military education and training, as well as examples of good practice and recommendations on how to integrate gender in military education and training.
The capacities of the MoDs to deliver gender training were strengthened by expanding the Regional Network of Gender Trainers, with additional 17 certified trainers upon completion of the 3rd Regional Gender Training of Trainers (GToT) course organized in close cooperation with the Nordic Center for Gender in Military Operations.
The Regional Network of Gender Trainers platform continued functioning in 2022, enabling information sharing and knowledge exchange among gender trainers, and planning of activities in person. Two regional meetings of the Network were organized in the second phase, enabling networking and planning of activities.
Gender awareness of the high-level officials in MoD and AFs advanced through Gender Coach Programme conducted in the Ministries of Defence in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, and North Macedonia, leading to increased knowledge and awareness of gender perspective in the military. In 2022, the Ministry of Defence of Serbia nominated its first representative to take part in gender coaching, thus confirming the commitment of the MoD to implement the recommendations of the recently launched Regional Study on Integrating a Gender Perspective in Military Education and Training.
MoDs strengthened internal capacities for a gender perspective in security sector reform through the implementation of demand-driven country-level small-scale projects contributing to standardized gender training, strengthened institutional response to address gender-based discrimination, and increased capacities for mainstreaming a gender perspective in military education.
Impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on project activities
During Phase II, the bulk of the project activities were conducted during the COVID-19 pandemic. The outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic in the Western Balkans jurisdictions forced the Governments to impose measures to prevent the spread of the virus, including the declaration of a state of emergency in some jurisdictions (notably Serbia), restrictions to the freedom of movement, public gatherings and downsizing of non-essential governmental and business processes. Furthermore, the state institutions, including the project's partners, have shifted their efforts to emergency response measures, while the key staff of some of the partner institutions was hospitalized or in quarantine because of COVID-19, which hindered their participation in the project throughout 2020 and 2021.
These circumstances affected project implementation. Some key project activities needed to be rescheduled (e.g., the 3rd Regional Gender Training for Trainers – GToT had to be rescheduled twice, in 2020 and in 2021, to be finally held in 2022). Most regional activities were converted to an online or hybrid setting format. UNDP SEESAC maintained regular contact with the project partners via online means to secure partners' continued commitment and participation in the project and, most importantly, meet the needs of MoDs related to gender integration in their activities as per MoDs' demand.
While activities continued, the project experienced delays in implementation, requiring two no-cost project extensions from the Norwegian MFA.
The final evaluation purpose, objectives and scope
The purpose of the project evaluation is to provide an impartial review of the UNDP regional project in terms of its relevance, coherence, effectiveness, efficiency, impact, sustainability, and, finally, communications and visibility. Also, the evaluation is essential for accountability and transparency, strengthening the ability of stakeholders to hold UNDP accountable for its development contributions. The key findings, lessons learnt, and recommendations generated by the evaluation will be used by the UNDP to assess the performance and value of the regional project, and as guidance for the future course of action in the field.
The evaluation objective is to examine the overall performance of the regional project "Strengthening of Regional Cooperation on Gender Mainstreaming in Security Sector Reform in the Western Balkans", and its results and assess how the outputs delivered the added value for the participating defence systems and their implementation of gender equality policies and the Women, Peace and Security Agenda. Based on a substantive analysis of the effectiveness of the project approach through desk-top review and feedback from project partners (MoDs and AFs Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, North Macedonia and Serbia), the evaluation is expected to assess cause and effect relations, identifying the extent to which the observed changes can be defined as transformational and can be attributed to UNDP regional project.
The evaluation will cover the periods January 2012 - June 2016 (Phase I) and December 2018 – June 2023 (Phase II).
Apart from a desk review of key documents (refer to Annex 2), the evaluation will draw from interviews with all partners involved in project implementation, notably representatives of four MoDs and AFs, donor partners, UNDP, and relevant other organizations (refer to Annex 1).
The final project evaluation will take into consideration the political, economic and social changes, notably changes that occurred during the four years of implementation of Phase II of the regional project, and in particular, the challenges caused by the COVID-19 pandemic and geopolitical tensions in the Western Balkans region.
Duties and Responsibilities
Regional project evaluation criteria and key questions
The evaluation should be guided by the following questions to determine the relevance, coherence, effectiveness, efficiency, sustainability, impact, including lessons learned and forward-looking recommendations. The guiding questions for the final project evaluation are summarised below. The overarching question for the overall project action is: Should the positive (or negative) changes be attributed to the project intervention, and which changes would not have happened without the project support in each of the four partner MoDs and the region of the Western Balkans?
- To what extent the project efforts towards meeting the gender equality have been relevant to the specific needs/priorities of the partner MoDs?
- Have the GEMs in each MoD in four jurisdictions steered the project design and implementation? If yes, how? If no, why not?
- Have all relevant risks been considered when designing the project, and have the risks been regularly monitored and updated to respond to any changes in the environment in which both phases of the regional project have been implemented?
- To what extent has the project been successful in ensuring complementarity, harmonization, and coordination with other relevant interventions of the MoDs and AFs in four jurisdictions in the Western Balkans, as well as interventions supported by other donors, avoiding duplication of efforts and adding value?
- Have the lessons learnt in Phase I been successfully implemented in Phase II of the project to maximize the coherence of action?
- Has the project results framework been well-defined and effective to measure the achievement of the project objectives and results?
- To what extent have the project activities been implemented, and have the intended objectives and results been achieved? What are the main accomplishments of each project phase?
- To what extent were the regional project design and management arrangements effective and appropriate for meeting the project objectives?
- Have there been any delays in the project implementation, what have been the causes, and have they been resolved? Were adequate steps taken by the project to adjust its implementation strategy to the new circumstances and needs? What lessons have been learnt from changes to the originally planned activities?
- Is the quality of achieved outputs satisfactory? To what extent are key stakeholders/ project partners satisfied with the project implementation and the outputs delivered? What are some of the specific challenges that were addressed and the challenges that remained relevant?
- Have the requested and provided funds been adequate to meet the needs identified by the project partners?
- Have resources (financial, human, technical) been allocated strategically and economically to achieve the project results?
- Is the relationship between project inputs and results achieved appropriate and justifiable?
- Have there been any weaknesses in project design, management, human resource skills, and resources?
- Have the lessons learnt in Phase I been successfully implemented in Phase II of the project to maximize the efficiency of action?
- Has the project, through the achievements/outcomes been effective in supporting the four Western Balkans jurisdictions in the implementation of the gender equality principles, implementation of the WPS Agenda and security sector reform with a specific focus on gender equality in the military?
- What is the project impact and benefit on the implementation at the country and regional levels?
- What would the status of gender equality in the military in four partner MoDs and AFs be without the project intervention and support?
- What are the positive or negative, intended or unintended, changes brought about by the project's interventions?
- To what extent are the achieved outputs and outcomes sustainable? Will the outputs lead to benefits beyond the lifespan of the project once the Phase II has been concluded?
- To what extent have the two phases of the project strengthened and promoted local ownership and leadership related to gender equality in the military? To what extent have the project partners and key stakeholders taken an active role in implementing the project
- To what extent have the capacities of four MoDs been strengthened to sustain the results of the project?
- What are the elements that do and do not deliver sustainable results, with specific focus on Phase II of the project?
- What are the innovations/ best practices that deserve to be further built upon?
- Have lessons learned been documented by the project on a regular basis in Phase I and Phase II?
Communications and Visibility
- Does the project have a proper external communications strategy and action plan? Is the individual contributors' visibility adequately ensured?
- Has the internal communication with partners and key stakeholders been regular and effective? Have MoDs/donors been regularly updated about the project activities?
- Have the project partners and key stakeholders been aware of the project results? If not, what could have been improved?
- Do the project partners demonstrate ownership of the project's results through the communication of project activities through their own channels?
The following additional questions should guide the overall regional impact of the project:
- Has the project contributed to SDGs #5 and #16? Has it indirectly contributed to other SDGs? To which and how?
- Has the project been strategically aligned with the UNDP Gender Equality Strategies for the periods 2014-2017 and 2018-2021?
- Have the UNDP Country Offices established new partnerships, or consolidated critical ones as a result of the regional project?
- To what extent have there been synergies and interlinkages between the UNDP project and WPS agenda?
- To what extent has the project implementation enabled UNDP to position itself as a critical actor in security sector reform in the jurisdictions where the project has been implemented?
- Are there lessons learnt and recommendations that could guide other similar regional project elsewhere? Has the project generated interest beyond the Western Balkans? If yes, what are the benefits of such interest for the partners?
- Are there any spill-over effects that could be attributed to this project?
The evaluation needs to assess the degree to which the project initiatives have supported or promoted gender equality, a rights-based approach, and human development. In this regard, United Nations Evaluation Group's guidance on Integrating Human Rights and Gender Equality in Evaluation should be consulted.
The Project Evaluation Expert will propose an evaluation methodology and agree with UNDP on a detailed plan for the assignment as a part of the Evaluation Inception Report. The proposed methodology should employ innovative participatory approaches and relevant quantitative, qualitative or combined methods to conduct the final project evaluation based on diverse evidence, using gender-disaggregated data and appropriate analytical methods. The Project Evaluation Expert is expected to combine the standard and other evaluation tools and techniques to ensure maximum reliability of data and validity of the evaluation findings. Evaluation methods need to generate feedback loops and insights that can be used in future planning to generate further transformational change. Stakeholder participation is an important source of data that can mitigate observational biases. The Evaluation Recommendations should be forward-looking and focused on adaptation to the changing system addressed by the project intervention.
Limitations to the chosen approach/methodology and methods shall be made explicit by the Project Evaluation Expert and the consequences of these limitations will be discussed in the proposed methodology. The Project Evaluation Expert shall, to the extent possible, present mitigation measures to address these limitations.
The Project Evaluation Expert is expected to carry out the evaluation process with careful consideration of these Terms of Reference. In cases where sensitive or confidential issues are to be addressed in the evaluation, the Project Evaluation Expert should ensure an evaluation design that does not put informants and stakeholders at risk during the data collection phase or the evaluation report dissemination phase.
Standard UNDP evaluation methodology would suggest the following data-collecting methods:
- Desk review: The Project Evaluation Expert will conduct a detailed review of the project materials and deliverables, including the Project Document/Description of the Action (Phase I and Phase II), theory of change and results framework, monitoring and project quality assurance reports, annual workplans, consolidated progress reports, etc. An indicative list of documents for desk review is provided in Annex 2.
- Key informant interviews: The Project Evaluation Expert will interview representatives of the partner MoDs and AFs, UNDP IRH and UNDP country offices, other relevant stakeholders in four Western Balkans jurisdictions, and representatives of the donors and UNDP SEESAC. The Project Evaluation Expert will strive to encompass a diverse pool of interviewees, ensuring a comprehensive gender perspective is integrated. An indicative list of main stakeholders that may be considered for meetings is provided in Annex 1.
- For the interviews, the Project Evaluation Expert is expected to address evaluation questions around relevance, coherence, effectiveness, efficiency, sustainability, and impact, as well as around communications and visibility criteria, according to the different stakeholders to be interviewed.
- Other methodologies, as appropriate, such as focus group discussions, case studies, surveys, statistical analysis, social network analysis, etc. may be used as appropriate.
UNDP Evaluation Guidelines Note: If, due to the new coronaviruses, it is not possible to travel to or within the jurisdiction for the evaluation then the consultant should develop a methodology that takes this into account the conduct of the evaluation virtually and remotely, including the use of remote interview methods and extended desk reviews, data analysis, surveys and evaluation questionnaires. This should be detailed in the Inception Report and agreed with the Evaluation Manager.
If a data collection/field mission is not possible, then remote interviews may be undertaken by telephone or online (zoom, etc.). International consultants can work remotely with national evaluator support in the field if it is safe for them to operate and travel.
A short validation mission may be considered if it is confirmed safe for staff. International consultants can work remotely with national evaluator support in the field if it is safe for them to operate and travel. No stakeholders, consultants, or UNDP staff should be put in harm's way, and safety is the key priority.
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 be thoroughly discussed and agreed upon between UNDP and the evaluator/s.
Under the overall direction of the UNDP SEESAC Project Manager, the Project Evaluation Expert is expected to deliver the following products and tasks:
- The Inception Report (10-15 pages) will be presented before the final project evaluation starts. The Inception Report sets out the conceptual framework to be applied in the evaluation. It includes the understanding of the evaluation objectives, theory of change, evaluation questions, and possible sub-questions, defines the detailed methodology, and provides information on data sources and collection, sampling, and key indicators. The Inception Report should elaborate an evaluation matrix (template available in Annex 3) and propose a work plan, schedule of tasks, activities, and evaluation deliverables. The Evaluation Inception Report should follow the structure proposed in the UNDP Evaluation Guidelines, p. 26-27.
- Data collection mission and Key Informants Interviews (KIIs): Upon the approval of the Inception Report by the UNDP, the Project Evaluation Expert is expected to carry out the project evaluation. To collect data and insights on the project, the Project Evaluation Expert will undertake one field mission per jurisdiction and have in person meetings and interviews with relevant stakeholders, including representatives of MoDs and AFs, UNDP, CO Gender Focal Points. UNDP will provide support in establishing initial contact with the relevant authorities before the organization of meetings, identifying interpreters, and covering the costs of the interpretation (if required).
- Debriefing: Following the field missions to Belgrade, Skopje, Sarajevo and Podgorica, and prior to the drafting of the Evaluation Report, the Project Evaluation Expert will debrief the UNDP team and present preliminary findings.
- Draft Evaluation Report: Based on the findings generated through desk review and data collected on missions in Belgrade, Skopje, Sarajevo and Podgorica, the Project Evaluation Expert will prepare and submit the Draft Evaluation Report to the UNDP for review. The Evaluation Report should follow the guidelines and structure proposed in the UNDP Evaluation Guidelines, p. 28-29.
- Evaluation review process (and eventual dispute settlement): Comments, questions, suggestions, and requests for clarification on the evaluation draft will be submitted to the Project Evaluation Expert and addressed in the agreed timeframe. The Project Evaluation Expert should reply to the comments through the evaluation audit trail document and not directly in the draft report. If there is disagreement in findings, these should be documented through the evaluation audit trail, while effort should be made to come to an agreement. The audit trail should follow the structure proposed in the UNDP Evaluation Guidelines, p. 30.
- The Evaluation Report (maximum 40 pages of the main report text) should be logically structured, contain data and evidence-based findings, conclusions, lessons, and forward-looking recommendations, and be presented in a way that makes the information accessible and comprehensible. The standard outline of the Evaluation Report is provided in Annex 4.
- Presentation of evaluation findings: Once the evaluation draft report is agreed with UNDP, the Project Evaluation Expert will participate in up to five online meetings to present the findings, conclusions, and recommendations of the evaluation to all relevant stakeholders.
Deliverables and timeframe
The following deliverables will be required from the Project Evaluation Expert:
Desk review, Evaluation design, methodology, and workplan including the proposed evaluation questions prepared and submitted to UNDP SEESAC.
22 May 2023
The Inception Report (10-15 pages) prepared and presented to UNDP SEESAC for approval before the start of the final project evaluation.
29 May 2023
Data collection field mission and key informants interviews (KIIs) conducted in Belgrade.
5 June 2023
Data collection field mission and key informants interviews (KIIs) conducted in Skopje.
12 June 2023
Data collection field mission and key informants interviews (KIIs) conducted in Sarajevo.
19 June 2023
In person data collection field mission and key informants interviews (KIIs) conducted in Podgorica.
26 June 2023
Following the field missions, and prior to the drafting of the Evaluation Report, the Project Evaluation Expert debriefed the UNDP SEESAC team and presented the preliminary findings in English.
28 June 2023
Based on the findings generated through desk review and data collected on missions in Belgrade, Skopje, Sarajevo and Podgorica, the Project Evaluation Expert prepared and submitted the Draft Evaluation Report to the UNDP SEESAC for review and comments.
6 July 2023
Responses to UNDP SEESAC’s comments on Draft Evaluation Report done through the evaluation audit trail document and submitted to UNDP SEESAC for review.
10 July 2023
The Evaluation Report (maximum 40 pages of the main report text) prepared and submitted to UNDP SEESAC.
1 August 2023
The findings, conclusions, and recommendations of the evaluation presented to all relevant stakeholders in up to five online meetings.
18 September 2023
 Template available at http://web.undp.org/evaluation/guideline/documents/PDF/UNDP_Evaluation_Guidelines.pdf, p. 25
The payments will be based on the successful completion of the above deliverables and following the approval of Expert's deliverables progress reports in English by the UNDP SEESAC Project Manager.
- Demonstrates integrity and fairness by modelling UN values and ethical standards.
- Displays cultural, gender, religion, race, nationality and age sensitivity and adaptability.
- Demonstrates professional competence to meet responsibilities and post requirements and is conscientious and efficient in meeting commitments, observing deadlines and achieving results.
- Results-Orientation: Plans and produces quality results to meet established goals, and generates innovative, practical solutions to challenging situations.
- Communication: Excellent communication and interpersonal skills, including the ability to convey complex concepts and recommendations, both orally and in writing, in a clear and persuasive style tailored to match different audiences.
- Team-work: Ability to interact, establish and maintain effective working relations with a culturally diverse team.
- Client orientation: Ability to establish and maintain productive partnerships with national partners and stakeholders and pro-activeness in identifying partners' needs and matching them to appropriate solutions.
Required Skills and Experience
The Project Evaluation Expert is expected to provide an independent and substantiated evaluation of the project achievements; capture underperformance and gaps, if any; triangulate findings among partners and key stakeholders and, last but not least – map lessons learned and provide strategic forward-looking recommendations.
The Project Evaluation Expert will work in close cooperation with the UNDP SEESAC team and will report to the UNDP SEESAC Manager, who will oversee and support the overall final project evaluation process. The Project Evaluation Expert should act with integrity and respect for all stakeholders according to the UNEG Ethical Guidelines for Evaluation.
- MA degree in international studies, gender studies, political or social science, public administration, law enforcement, or related fields (certificates in evaluation studies is an asset).
Experience and knowledge
- At least 5 years of experience in projects on gender equality and women's empowerment in development and post-conflict contexts covering multiple jurisdictions.
- At least 3 years of experience in gender equality and security sector reform in South East Europe.
- Documented track record of delivering high-quality evaluations, showing excellent analytical skills, sound judgment, and ability to objectively evaluate project and programme in terms of processes and results achieved and propose clear conclusions and recommendations.
- Understanding of the geopolitical and social context in the Western Balkans and awareness of geopolitical sensitivities.
- Sound understanding of Women, Peace and Security Agenda.
- Prior experience with the UN system and EU integration process is an asset.
- Languages requirements: oral and written fluency in English, knowledge of BCMS or Macedonian is an asset.
The Project Evaluation Expert shall not have any direct or indirect institutional or personal interest (such as financial gains as employees, consultants, individual contractors whether individually or through corporate ownership, participation or benefit), or those of his or her family members or his/her direct supervisor/s, of private or professional nature, in any of the projects implemented within the project framework. Project Evaluation Expert must declare immediately should they identify such conflict.
This evaluation will be conducted in accordance with the principles outlined in the UNEG' Ethical Guidelines for Evaluation'. The evaluators 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 of data. The evaluators must also ensure the security and confidentiality of collected information before, during, 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 be used solely for project evaluation purposes and not for other uses without the express authorization of UNDP and its partners. The evaluators should be free from any conflict of interest related to this evaluation. All personnel engaged in the evaluation need to sign the Pledge of Ethical Conduct, upon the signature of the contract.
Management and implementation arrangements
The Project Evaluation Expert will report to the assigned Evaluation Manager, who will oversee and support the overall evaluation process, and assure high quality and independent implementation of the evaluation with the appropriate guidance from UNDP's Senior Management and in coordination with the Regional Project team.
The UNDP Regional Project Team will provide the required information and documents to the Project Evaluation Expert. They will also be responsible for providing support in establishing initial contacts with the interviewees before the organization of meetings and identifying interpreters, and covering the costs the interpretation (latter if required).
The Project Board will be available for interviews with the Project Evaluation Expert and will endorse the Final Evaluation Report following presentations of the evaluation findings, as necessary.
DOCUMENTS TO BE INCLUDED WHEN SUBMITTING THE PROPOSALS.
Qualified and interested candidates are asked to submit their applications via UNDP Web site: UNDP in Serbia, under the section "Jobs" no later than 2 May 2023.
Application should include:
- CV in English language containing date of birth, contact information (home address, phone number, e-mail) and timeline of work experience (including description of duties).
- Five examples of Offeror's work that are relevant for the vacancy and description of their impact. Applications that do not include examples of Offeror's work will not be considered.
- Letter introducing the offeror, highlighting relevant evaluation expertise, confirming the availability during the whole assignment period.
- Technical proposal, specifying the methodology to be employed to conduct this assessment, showing the understanding of the task and of the Western Balkans regional context in relation to gender equality and arms control. The proposal should also explain how the methodology will be adjusted in case of a worsening of the COVID-19 pandemic and stricter Government restrictions.
- List of relevant publications and evaluations conducted by the contractor.
- Offeror's Letter (only PDF format will be accepted) confirming Interest and availability for the Individual Contractor (IC) Assignment. It can be downloaded from the following link: https://www.undp.org/sites/g/files/zskgke326/files/2022-07/confirmation.docx. The Offeror's Letter shall include a financial proposal specifying a total lump sum amount for the tasks specified in this announcement with a breakdown of costs.
In order to apply please merge above listed documents into a single PDF file. The system does not allow for more than one attachment to be uploaded.
The shortlisted candidates may be asked to provide copies of diplomas and any other certificates providing evidence of their education and experience in relevant fields.
Any request for clarification must be sent by standard electronic communication to the e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. The procuring UNDP entity will respond by standard electronic mail and will send response, including an explanation of the query without identifying the source of inquiry, to all consultants.
- Lump sum contracts
The financial proposal shall specify a total lump sum amount (USD), and payment terms around specific and measurable (qualitative and quantitative) deliverables (i.e. whether payments fall in instalments or upon completion of the entire contract). Payments are based upon output, i.e. upon delivery of the services specified in the TOR. In order to assist the requesting unit in the comparison of financial proposals, the financial proposal will include a breakdown of this lump sum amount (including travel, per diems, and number of anticipated working days).
All envisaged travel costs must be included in the financial proposal. This includes all travel to join duty station/repatriation travel. 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.
1. Cumulative analysis
When using this weighted scoring method, the award of the contract should 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 a pre-determined set of weighted technical and financial criteria specific to the solicitation.
* Technical Criteria weight; 70%
* Financial Criteria weight; 30%
Only candidates obtaining a minimum of 49 points would be considered for the Financial Evaluation
- Individual Contract (IC) will be applicable for individual consultants applying in their own capacity. If the applicant is employed by any legal entity, IC would be issued upon submission of Consent letter from the employer acknowledging the engagement with UNDP. Template of General Conditions on IC could be found on: Template of General Conditions on IC could be found on: https://www.undp.org/sites/g/files/zskgke326/files/2022-07/General_Conditions_for_Individual_Contracts.pdf
- Reimbursable Loan Agreement (RLA) will be applicable for applicants employed by any legal entity. Template of RLA with General Terms and Conditions could be found on: https://www.undp.org/sites/g/files/zskgke326/files/2022-07/PSU_Individual%20Contract_Model%20Reimbursable%20Loan%20Agreement.docx
In the case of engagement of Civil servants under IC contract modality a no-objection letter should be provided by the Government entity. The ‘no-objection’ letter must also state that the employer formally certifies that their employees are allowed to receive short-term consultancy assignment from another entity without being on “leave-without-pay” status (if applicable), and include any conditions and restrictions on granting such permission, if any. If the previous is not applicable ‘leave-without-pay’ confirmation should be submitted.
Engagement of Government Officials and Employees
- Government Officials or Employees are civil servants of UN Member States. As such, if they will be engaged by UNDP under an IC which they will be signing in their individual capacity (i.e., engagement is not done through RLA signed by their government employer), the following conditions must be met prior to the award of contract:
(i) A “No-objection” letter in respect of the individual is received from the Government employing him/her, and;
(ii) The individual must provide an official documentation from his/her employer formally certifying his or her status as being on “official leave without pay” for the duration of the IC.
- The above requirements are also applicable to Government-owned and controlled enterprises and well as other semi/partially or fully owned Government entities, whether or not the Government ownership is of majority or minority status.
- UNDP recognizes the possibility that there are situations when the Government entity employing the individual that UNDP wishes to engage is one that allows its employees to receive external short-term consultancy assignments (including but not limited to research institutions, state-owned colleges/universities, etc.), whereby a status of “on-leave-without-pay” is not required. Under such circumstance, the individual entering into an IC with UNDP must still provide a “No-objection” letter from the Government employing him/her. The “no objection” letter required under (i) above must also state that the employer formally certifies that their employees are allowed to receive short-term consultancy assignment from another entity without being on “leave-without-pay” status and include any conditions and restrictions on granting such permission, if any. The said document may be obtained by, and put on record of, UNDP, in lieu of the document (ii) listed above.
TOR ANNEXES (will be provided upon the selection of the candidate)
Annex 1. Indicative list of the main stakeholders and their roles in evaluation
Annex 2. List of documents to be considered for the evaluation desk review
Annex 3. Required Evaluation Matrix Template
Annex 4. Standard outline for an evaluation report
Annex 5: UNEG Ethical Guidelines for Evaluation
Annex 6. Pledge of ethical conduct evaluation
Annex 7: UNEG Code of Conduct for Evaluation in the UN System
 The Evaluation Manager is not the project manager. The Evaluation Manager leads the evaluation process and participates in all of its stages - evaluability assessment, preparation, implementation, management and use. The responsibilities of the Evaluation Manager are listed in the UNDP Evaluation Guidelines, Section 5, Roles and Responsibilities.