The UNDP Programme and Operations Policies and Procedures (POPP) states that: "All UNDP projects must be environmentally sustainable. Negative impacts need to be avoided or minimized, positive impact should be strengthened and environmental opportunities seized." The POPP, however, has gaps in the prescriptive requirements and descriptive guidance regarding environmental assessment and other environmental performance standards. A Task Team was therefore established to address these gaps by developing new policies, procedures and guidance to further strengthen UNDP’s environmental performance. An output of this Task Team was a new procedure requiring all projects undergo an environmental screening process to determine if an environmental impact assessment (EIA) is required. The objective of this consultancy is to support the successful implementation and long-term sustainability of this new procedure through advocacy, knowledge sharing and capacity development.

Duties and Responsibilities

Network Facilitation and Knowledge Products (30 days):

  • Support the launch of the new procedure by drafting a message which will be distributed through various UNDP networks to raise awareness of the environmental screening and assessment requirements and process.
  • Establish and facilitate an environment and climate change assessment “service space” (i.e. through UNDP’s Teamworks network) to support shared learning and networking.
  • Review and track results of completed environmental screenings. Specifically document the percentage of projects requiring environmental impact assessments (EIAs) and how the EIA was implemented and funded.
  • Draft a briefing to be shared through various UNDP networks and the “service space” outlining the lessons-learned, issues and experiences in applying the new environmental screening procedure.
  • Develop a presentation on the new policy and procedure which provides a brief orientation and training for UNDP staff. The intent being that the presentation could be delivered and utilized by various UNDP staff.
  • Prepare a set of answers to Frequently Asked Questions based queries received through the “service space” and UNDP networks.

Revised Tools/Guidance (30 days):

  • Refine the environmental screening tool and guidance based on lessons-learned.
  • Further develop the environmental assessment “resource center” in the POPP to provide access to existing guidance, tools and resources.
  • Revise and strengthen the environment and climate change elements of the “Quality Programming Checklist.”
  • Research the possibility of “certifying” national systems of environmental screening and assessment. Specifically, conduct research on what other agencies are doing in this regard (e.g. World Bank) and if UNDP can utilize existing certification systems.
  • Working closely with the Task Team, assess the need for additional environmental safeguards and procedures (specifically related to climate change) in the POPP.

Needs Assessment and Proposal for Long-Term Support (30 days):

Based on experiences in applying the new procedure, conduct a needs assessment that specifically looks at capacity and support needs to ensure the long-term sustainability of the procedure. This will include:

  • A set of recommendations for long-term support functions needed to ensure environmental screening and assessment of UNDP projects is successfully implemented and supported (e.g. assess need for additional human and/or financial resources).
  • A staff training and learning proposal based on the initial needs assessment. The need for a certification training programme will be assessed.
  • Recommendations for the development of additional environmental screening and assessment tools and guidance, if needed.
  • Recommendations for further strengthening environmental sustainability in the POPP, if needed.

Outputs /Deliverables

1. Work Plan: Outline of schedule, level of effort, approach and consultation processes. The work plan will be updated throughout the course of the contract as needed and upon agreement by the Task Team.

2. Knowledge Sharing Products: The following products will be developed and shared through the “service space” and various UNDP networks –

  • Launch message to UNDP staff to introduce the new policy/procedure and increase awareness of the process (email).
  • Briefing on lessons-learned, issues and experiences (2-5 pages).
  • Answers to Frequently Asked Questions (1-3 pages total)
  • Presentation to be utilized for brief orientation/training sessions (for a one-hour session).

3. Revised Screening Tool and Guidance: Refinement of the screening tool and guidance based on experience in their application. This will include a short briefing note on the possibility of “certifying” national environmental assessment systems. If significant revisions are required then the consultant will draft this up in a proposal for review and approval by the Task Team and additional scope of work if needed.

4. Needs Assessment and Proposal for Long-Term Support (approximately 10 pages plus relevant annexes): Summary of issues, lessons learned and experiences in applying the environmental screening procedure as well as initial assessment of long-term implementation capacity and support needs. This will include a brief set of recommendations for further refinement and development of environmental safeguards in the POPP and potential implementation implications. A learning proposal for UNDP staff will be included as an Annex.


  • Demonstrates sufficient technical knowledge in environment and climate change assessment, performance, and management.
  • Sets priorities, produces quality outputs, meets deadlines and manages time efficiently.
  • Writes clearly and convincingly.
  • Anticipates evolving client needs.
  • Communicates effectively and respectfully with individuals of a different culture, races, gender, religion, nationality and age.

Required Skills and Experience

  • At least a Masters degree in environmental or international development related field.
  • At least 10 years of experience in environmental assessment, performance, and management.
  • Solid understanding of climate change risks and vulnerability.
  • Available to participate in frequent meetings in New York.
  • Knowledge of UNDP Programming and Operations Policies and Procedures desirable.
  • Experience working in the UN or similar institutions.