International Consultant – Project Management Advisor for EU/UNDP Black Sea Project: “Improving Environmental Monitoring in the Black Sea, Phase 2 – EMBLAS II”

Location : Home-based with travels in the Black Sea region, TURKEY
Application Deadline :10-Jun-14 (Midnight New York, USA)
Type of Contract :Individual Contract
Post Level :International Consultant
Languages Required :
Duration of Initial Contract :Estimated June 2014 - May 2015
Expected Duration of Assignment :Approximately 180 working days


The Black Sea is one of the most vulnerable regional seas in the world given its limited exchange of water with the open oceans and the large area of continental Europe from which it receives the drainage. The four strongly interlinked priority trans-boundary problems of the Black Sea are eutrophication - nutrient enrichment, changes in marine living resources, chemical pollution (including oil), and biodiversity/habitat changes, including alien species introduction - as well as the underlying root causes like industrial activities, agriculture, domestic wastewater, sea transport (oil spills, ballast water), and coastal zone degradation (urbanisation, tourism). The Convention on the Protection of the Black Sea against Pollution (Bucharest Convention) addresses these problems through enhanced cooperation among its signatories. The development/improvement of a monitoring network and data collection to provide for ecosystem-based and knowledge-based decision-making is considered to be a management target of high priority. Further coordination in policies and legislation between the Black Sea countries is of common interest in the region and specifically to the EU's partners countries – being also members of the Black Sea Commission (BSC) - in so far it influences their own ability to comply with EU legislation and policies, notably the EU Water Framework Directive (WFD) and the EU Marine Strategy Framework Directive (MSFD).

The overall objective of the project is to help improve the protection of the Black Sea environment. This objective will be pursued through the implementation of those initiatives that were elaborated and planned during the preparatory phase of this project (EMBLAS-I).

The specific objectives are as follows: i) to improve availability and quality of Black Sea environmental data in line with the MSFD and Black Sea Strategic Action Plan 2009 (BS SAP 2009) needs; ii) to improve partner countries' ability to perform marine environmental monitoring along MSFD principles, taking into account the Black Sea Diagnostic Report II recommendations on capacity building.

The main results to attain the mentioned objectives are:

  • Implementation of the provisions of the Bucharest Convention on scientific and technical cooperation and monitoring advanced;
  • Establishment and implementation by the Black Sea Commission of a coordinated regional marine environment monitoring programme (further development of Black Sea Integrated Monitoring and Assessment Programme(BSIMAP) in line with MSFD and the BS SAP 2009 supported;
  • Capacities of the relevant national authorities to carry out marine environmental monitoring in the Black Sea along MSFD principles increased;
  • Revised monitoring programmes tested (including in open sea and with the development of a network of regional reference stations and transects to trace transboundary environmental problems);
  • Quality assurance and quality control procedures in field and laboratories systematically applied;
  • Environmental data management capacities improved and data quality control enhanced;
  • BSIS further developed and data products in support of informed decision-making in Black Sea environmental protection provided;
  • On-line Black Sea Monitoring Catalogue and Manual with monitoring specifications agreed and used
  • Sharing of marine environmental information between Black Sea riparian countries facilitated and enhanced;
  • Harmonisation of marine environmental practices further advanced;
  • Regional cooperation at basin level strengthened;
  • Public awareness about the need of high quality marine environmental data increased;
  • Projects results widely incorporated in decision-making and cooperation of ongoing projects facilitated through a web-based platform and with the BSC participation.
The following activities are carried out in the Phase 2 of the project – EMBLAS II:
  • Continue support to the implementation of countries’ obligations under the Bucharest and other related Conventions and Agreements;
  • Implementation of cost-effective and harmonised marine environmental monitoring programmes in accordance with reporting obligations under multilateral environmental agreements, the WFD and the MSFD;
  • Large scale implementation of training programmes on monitoring methods and quality assurance adhering to the ISO 17025 standard;
  • Implementation of Joint Surveys and environmental assessment of the Black Sea along the lines of the WFD and the MSFD;
  • Operate the web-based Black Sea Water Quality Database;
  • Dissemination of Knowledge and Best Practices, Public Awareness and Visibility.
The project will strengthen capacities of the respective national authorities for biological and chemical monitoring of the Black Sea, taking into consideration the requirements of EU water related legislation (EU WFD and MSFD). Significant effort will be put into training and other capacity building activities. In order to promote ownership, engagement of local experts and organisations is foreseen.

Duties and Responsibilities

The Project  Management Advisor (PMA) will act as a key expert and team leader in the project and he/she will have an overall responsibility for implementation, coordination and results of the project activities implemented in, Georgia, Russia and Ukraine. He/she will work under the direct supervision of the UNDP Regional Technical Advisor for International Waters, who will have the overall supervision role on the project from the UNDP side. 

The PM will liaise directly with the representatives appointed by the Ministries and Black Sea Commissioners during the project implementation. The PM will be supported by the international expert – project technical advisor, project assistant and water programme analyst from UNDP Regional Centre for Europe and the CIS.

The PM will be responsible for the management, implementation plan, monitoring of expenditures, quality of outputs/deliverables, identification of controversial points or deviations from the initial planning, analysis of options for correcting deviations (if any) and reporting to the Steering Committee.  The PM will have an overall responsibility for the organisation of the key project meetings, including meetings' documentation.

The specific tasks can be grouped into 3 main areas:
  • Project implementation (management, team leadership, monitoring and reporting);
  • Advisory support, capacity building and regional activities;
  • Stakeholder involvement, partner coordination, knowledge management support.
Project implementation (management, team leadership, monitoring and reporting):

In the context of the project implementation (planning, team leadership, monitoring and reporting), he/she will be responsible for:
  • Preparation of progress reports, according to the donor requirements, containing description of progress – technical and financial, including problem encountered, planned activities of the following 6 month period as well as inputs for all reports required within UNDP project monitoring scheme, provide input necessary for Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E activities);
  • Drafting, update and monitoring of work plans, budgets and expenditures;
  • Timely delivery of results and outputs in all project activities;
  • In line with UNDP’s rules and regulations and the prevailing project implementation arrangements, draft Terms of References (TORs) for project experts, partner organizations, identify candidates, and provide input to the recruitment and hiring process as needed;
  • Directly liaise with project partners and stakeholders as needed;
  • Ensure adequate outreach, communication, P/R and project visibility;
  • Other tasks to ensure proper project implementation, as adequate and requested by the supervisor.
Advisory support, capacity building and regional activities:
  • Coordinate and oversee the work of the whole team of consultants/experts, work groups, project partners and assure timely and quality implementation of all project activities, including quality control of all produced outputs;
  • Support countries to fulfill their obligations under the Bucharest convention and other relevant Conventions and agreements;
  • Provide substantive inputs into all technical reports to be prepared and carry out various activities arising during the project implementation.
Stakeholder involvement, partner coordination, knowledge management support:
  • Facilitate discussions, workshops or other events with multiple stakeholder and NGO participation, studies, surveys and pilot projects;
  • Facilitate coordination with capacity building activities or partners and other relevant projects, which may include development and implementation of joint capacity building strategies and programmes;
  • Liaise directly with the representatives appointed by the ministries within the Project Steering Committee (PSC) and national focal points.

Home based, with travels in the Black Sea region (for approximately 5 project meetings) and particularly to Odessa project office - once a month or as needed. The project will be implemented in Georgia, Russian Federation and Ukraine.

The consultant will prepare several deliverables in cooperation with the project experts, within the following time frame and payment schedule:

June 2014 (20% of payment)
  • Detail work plan for the activities in EMBLAS II and List of deliverables, as an input for the ToRs for partner organizations and experts, based on the Project Document/Description of Activities and contributions from the project partners;
  • Draft Terms of Reference for project experts and partner organizations (based also on the proposals of partners for their participation in EMBLAS II);
October 2014 (30% of payment)
  • Inception meeting (agenda, List of Participants, minutes), draft Inception Report including overall Project Workplan and detailed Workplan for the 1st year of implementation ( by August 2014);
  • Draft and Final Inception Report and Dissemination Plan (by October 2014);
  • Input to the Final draft Training Programme (based on the revision of national monitoring programmes and the needs identified respectively) (by September 2014).
November 2014 (30% of payment)
  • Input to the Final draft list of compliance indicators;
  • Concept for sustainable operational monitoring in the Black Sea region;
  • Set of SoPs and Guidelines (chemical and biological monitoring, data quality control (DQC));
  • Draft selection criteria for the testing sites and methodology for and practical organisation of the pilot studies and Joint cruises;
  • Progress report (for EC donor) for period April – September 2014 (with information on preparations for field work);
  • Annual workplan and budget for the Steering committee approval.
May 2015 (20% of payment)
  • Full Annual progress report April 2014- April 2015;
  • Technical report on undertaken field work and intercalibrations;
  • Organize Steering committee meeting with all relevant document (work plan, budget for the next period).
In addition, the consultant will be responsible for:
  • Preparation of relevant progress reports: i) 6 months progress reports, according to the donor requirements, containing description of progress – technical and financial, including problem encountered, challenges and recommendations, planned activities of the following 6 month period; ii ) brief quarterly overview on progress of activities, their results, the difference between initial planning and actual state of play, problems encountered and how they were managed in order to keep the donor and PSC updated on the project progress; iii) substantive part of all project progress monitoring documentations in line with UNDP and EU requirements;
  • Oversight and preparation and finalization of key technical reports of the project, prepared with input from the project experts and partner organizations;
  • Preparation of other specific substantive reports as needed and carry out tasks assigned by UNDP Regional Technical Advisor for Intl. Waters.
The assignment will require travel in the region, upon request by UNDP (to be covered separately). The consultant is expected to work closely with UNDP Regional Centre for Europe and the CIS, with the staff, responsible for the project implementation. The consultant is expected to work approximately 15 working days a month (in total 180 working days).


Functional competencies:
  • Excellent communication and management skills and demonstrable capacity to lead a multi-national team and to work with government institutions;
  • Demonstrated ability to develop strategies and work plans to accomplish objectives, empower others to translate visions and efforts into results, identify strategic issues, opportunities and risks and devise timely and effective responses;
  • Openness to change and ability to receive/integrate feedback;
  • Ability to work under pressure and stressful situations;
  • Strong analytical, reporting and writing abilities.
Corporate Competencies:
  • Demonstrates integrity by modeling the UN’s values and ethical standards;
  • Promotes the vision, mission, and strategic goals of UNDP;
  • Displays cultural, gender, religion, race, nationality and age sensitivity and adaptability;
  • Treats all people fairly without favoritism;
  • Fulfills all obligations to gender sensitivity and zero tolerance for sexual harassment.

Required Skills and Experience

Academic Qualifications/Education:
  • Minimum Master Degree in chemistry, chemical oceanography, hydrobiology, environmental/natural sciences or environmental engineering (or equivalent).
  • At least 5 years of demonstrable experience and a proven track record in fields required for the implementation of the Marine Strategy Framework Directive (MSFWD), the Water Framework Directive (WFD) and other EU Directives;
  • Experience demonstrating an understanding of transposition, implementation or enforcement of the EU environmental legislation, particularly the EU WFD, MSFD, and of capacity building challenges faced by environment/water authorities in the beneficiary countries or EU Member States;
  • At least 5 years of management experience in projects with multidisciplinary teams related to water environment, having a management position, team-leader or equivalent, in a development project of similar size and complexity, including stakeholder involvement in the integrated water resources management process;
  • Working experience in international projects related to research and development, integrated resources water management, water quality, monitoring programmes, data collection and management;
  • Relevant experience in the beneficiary countries of the Black Sea is a strong asset.
Language skills
  • Excellent writing editing and oral communication skills in English;
  • Working knowledge of Russian is an asset.
Evaluation of Applicants

Individual consultants will be evaluated based on a cumulative analysis taking into consideration the combination of the applicants’ qualifications and financial proposal.

The award of the contract should be made to the individual consultant whose offer has been evaluated and determined as:
  • Responsive/compliant/acceptable; and
  • Having received the highest score out of a pre-determined set of weighted technical (P11 desk reviews and interviews) and financial criteria specific to the solicitation.
Only highest ranked candidates who would be found qualified for the job based on the P11 desk review will be invited for an interview

Technical Criteria - 70% of total evaluation – max. 70 points:
  • Criteria A – academic qualification / education  – max. points: 10;
  • Criteria B – general professional experience in EU environmental Acquis (WFD and MSFD) - max. points: 10;
  • Criteria C – specific professional experience in management position, team-leader or equivalent, in  development project of similar size and complexity, including stakeholder involvement in Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM) process – max. points: 10;
  • Criteria D – specific professional experience in the areas of project (IWRM, water quality monitoring – chemical & biological) – max points: 10,
  • Criteria E – particular experience in the Black Sea region – max. points: 10;
  • Criteria F – language writing skills and publications  - max. points: 6;
  • Criteria G – interviews (communications skills) – max. 7 points;
  • Criteria H – interviews (technical expertise) – max. 7 points;
Financial Criteria - 30% of total evaluation – max. 30 points

Application procedures

Qualified candidates are requested to apply online via this website. The application should contain:
  • Cover letter explaining why you are the most suitable candidate for the advertised position. Please paste the letter into the "Resume and Motivation" section of the electronic application.
  • Filled P11 form including past experience in similar projects and contact details of referees(blank form can be downloaded from ); please upload the P11 instead of your CV.
  • Financial Proposal* - specifying a total lump sum amount in USD for the tasks specified in this announcement. The financial proposal shall include a breakdown of this lump sum amount (number of anticipated working days and any other possible costs except of travel); travel costs will be paid separately according to the UN rules and regulations.
  • Incomplete applications will not be considered. Please make sure you have provided all requested materials

* Please note that the financial proposal is all-inclusive and shall take into account various expenses incurred by the consultant/contractor during the contract period (e.g. fee, health insurance, vaccination and any other relevant expenses related to the performance of services...). Travel costs will be covered separately according to UNDP rules and regulations.

Payments will be made only upon confirmation of UNDP on delivering on the contract obligations in a satisfactory manner.

Individual Consultants are responsible for ensuring they have vaccinations/inoculations when travelling to certain countries, as designated by the UN Medical Director. Consultants are also required to comply with the UN security directives set forth under

General Terms and conditions as well as other related documents can be found under:

Qualified women and members of minorities are encouraged to apply.
Due to large number of applications we receive, we are able to inform only 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.

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