CALL FOR APPLICATIONS: Democratic Governance Roster for Experts in Civil Society and Civic Engagement

Location : Varies from home-based to assignments in headquarters/ regional centres or country office
Application Deadline :04-Nov-11 (Midnight New York, USA)
Type of Contract :Individual Contract
Post Level :International Consultant
Languages Required :
Duration of Initial Contract :Varies from a few days to several months
Expected Duration of Assignment :Varies from a few days to several months


The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) is the UN’s development network, an organization advocating for change and connecting countries to knowledge, experience and resources to help people build a better life. UNDP supports over 132 countries around the globe in the areas of Poverty Reduction, Democratic Governance, Environment and Energy, Capacity Development, Gender, HIV/AIDS and Crisis Prevention and Recovery. The Bureau for Development Policy (BDP) is UNDP’s policy bureau. BDP plays a key role in helping country offices accelerate human development through UNDP’s programmes and initiatives.
The Democratic Governance Practice (DGP) is the largest practice area in UNDP/BDP. It works on building effective and capable states that are accountable and transparent. The principal areas of work are organized around 3 clusters: Inclusive Participation, Responsive Governing Institutions, and International Norms and Principles.
The Inclusive Participation cluster supports efforts for expanding opportunities for civic engagement – particularly of the poor, women, youth, indigenous people, and other marginalized groups – in the channels of interaction with the state, at national, regional and local levels.
The Responsive Institutions cluster promotes the development of institutional capacity, and accountability, in the area of access to justice, rule of law and security, public administration and local governance at the national, regional and local level to ensure these institutions reflect and serve the needs, priorities, and interests of all people. Programme priority is given to strengthening the mechanisms of responsiveness and public accountability to the concerns and interests of poor people, women, and other vulnerable or excluded groups.
The International Norms and Principles cluster promotes integration of UN principles, policies, practices, and strategies (on human rights, anti-corruption and gender) within and outside the UN family.
Part of the Democratic Governance Group, the Oslo Governance Centre [OGC] was established in 2002 to support the practical and operational work of UNDP in assisting partner countries in developing more democratic and effective forms of governance for sustainable peace and development; including strengthening civil society and social accountability.  UNDP’s Civil Society Division, housed in the Partnerships Bureau (PB) is responsible for strengthening UNDP policies and methods to engage and collaborate more effectively and systematically with civil society and its organizations at all levels.
For UNDP, civil society constitutes the full range of formal and informal organizations that are outside the state and market. This includes social movements, volunteer organizations, indigenous peoples' organizations, mass-based membership organizations, non-governmental organizations, and community-based organizations, as well as communities and citizens acting individually and collectively.  UNDP partners with civil society organizations in programme implementation and policy advocacy. At the country level, this often means working with them to provide basic services in the areas of health, education, water delivery, agricultural extension and micro-credit provision.
UNDP seeks to engage with civil society to promote the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). Engagement with civil society is critical to national ownership of development processes, democratic governance, and the quality and relevance of official development programmes. Given the growing role and influence of civil society in development, UNDP seeks to draw on and contribute to its strengths in order to maximize the potential of civic engagement for development.. Engagement with civil society is critical to national ownership of development processes, democratic governance, and the quality and relevance of official development programmes. Given the growing role and influence of civil society in development, UNDP seeks to draw on and contribute to its strengths in order to maximize the potential of civic engagement for development.
UNDP focuses on three goals for strengthening civil society:
Given this background, UNDP is looking to expand its expert pool/roster in order to enhance its capacity to respond quickly to demand for additional expertise from regional and country offices.

Duties and Responsibilities

Provide technical and advisory support in the following areas:
  • Overview of enabling environment, including the legal and regulatory framework, for civil society and civic engagement.
  • Social accountability mechanisms.
  • Civil society led-assessments.
  • Community level performance budgeting.
  • Indigenous people’s participation.
  • Develop training materials and facilitate learning events related to civil society and civic engagement.
  • Support development of knowledge products (authoring different chapters peer reviewing various publications and guidance notes, editing, etc).
  • Developing inventories of civil society organizations and activities by regional and thematic areas.


  • Demonstrates integrity by modeling the UN's values and ethical standards.
  • Displays cultural, gender, religion, nationality and age sensitivity and adaptability.
  • Ability to work in a team.
  • Ability to structure a task in terms of the analytic/investigative process and to produce a well-structured output.
  • Strong interpersonal skills, communication and diplomatic skills.
  • Openness to change and ability to receive/integrate feedback.
  • Ability to work under pressure and stressful situations.
  • Ability to manage workload with minimum supervision.
  • Strong analytical, reporting and writing abilities.

Required Skills and Experience

  • Master’s degree in Development Studies, Economics, Sociology, Public Policy, Law, International Affairs, Investigative Journalism or related field.
  • Minimum 7 years of relevant working experience, with a minimum of 5 years of policy and programmatic experience in democratic governance, particularly in civil society and civic engagement in diverse settings and in developing countries.
  • Extensive experience applying qualitative and quantitative methods of social research.
  • Expertise in designing, facilitating and managing participatory processes involving state and non-state actors.
  • Experience in project design and evaluation.
  • Experience in drafting user-friendly reports and publications such as research papers, toolkits, guides, methodologies, policy analysis and papers, project and programme documents, baseline studies, desk reviews, and comparative studies.
  • Fluency in spoken and written English is a must.
  • Proficiency in one or more of the following languages - Russian, French, Spanish, Portuguese and Arabic - is an asset.
Computer skills:
  • IT literacy and ability to operate with on-line web-based applications.

Evaluation of Applicants:

  • Applicants will be screened against qualifications and the competencies specified above, including submission of written / published work. 
  • Short listed candidates will be invited to participate in an interview and/or assessment.
  • Candidates’ references –including past employers- will be verified and confirmed.
  • Selected candidates will be invited to create a profile in the roster; where they can be considered for consultancy opportunities as needs arise.
Contracting Arrangements:
Successful candidates will be included in UNDP’s Democratic Governance Vetted Experts Roster for a period of 2 years. Inclusion in the expert roster does not guarantee a contract with UNDP.
When a request for services arises, the hiring unit/office shall:
  • Contact the roster manager or search the roster to select at least three qualified experts.
  • Send the procurement notice and ToRs for the assignment to the selected experts with a request to confirm      availability and submit a financial proposal for the assignment within 3-5 business days.
  • Review the submissions and financial proposals
  • Select an expert for the assignment based on the ‘Best value for money’ approach.
  • Issue an Individual Contract to the expert.
  • Notify the roster manager of the decision and of the duration of the contract issued to the expert.
  • Submit an evaluation of the expert to the roster manager once the assignment is completed; and before the final payment is issued.
  • The contracting unit/office will provide a specific Term of Reference (ToR) outlining the outputs for each assignment and issue an Individual Contract (IC) to the consultant, detailing the time frame, and frequency/modality of payments.
  • Conditions of a particular assignment may be negotiable. 
Payment/s shall be made following certification by UNDP that the services related to each deliverable, as specified in the contract, have been satisfactorily performed and the deliverables have been achieved by or before the due dates specified, if any.
Please note that an evaluation of the expert must be submitted by the hiring unit before issuance of the last payment on the assignment.
Application Procedure:
Qualified candidates are requested to apply online via the UNDP website. This call for applications is specifically directed at Civil Society and Civic Engagement Experts. Interested candidates are advised to carefully review this ToR and ensure that they meet the requirements and qualifications described above.
Experts can apply to more than one expert roster. Candidates interested in being considered for other thematic rosters should submit a separate application, in response to the specific vacancy announcement for that thematic area.
All Democratic Governance Vetted Experts Roster announcements are accessible below:
Experts must submit all materials requested for each thematic area of interest.  Applications (for each roster) should contain:
  • A brief cover letter, clearly identifying the sub-area(s) of interest and expertise for which the applicant wishes to be considered. Please paste the letter into the "Resume and Motivation" section of the electronic application.
  • A current completed and signed P11 form/ UN Personal History Form in English (blank form can be downloaded from; please upload the P11 instead of your CV.); .
  • Contact details for 3 references. Please note that your previous employers could also be contacted.
  • Incomplete applications will not be considered. Please make sure you provide all requested materials
  • The deadline for submission of applications is 14 October 2011.
Qualified women and members of social minorities are encouraged to apply. Due to the large number of applications we receive, we are only able to inform the successful candidates about the outcome or status of the selection process.

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.

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