Junior Researcher– research and drafting of studies for the EC-UNDP Electoral Conflict Prevention Toolbox

Location : Brussels, BELGIUM
Application Deadline :08-Mar-18 (Midnight New York, USA)
Type of Contract :Individual Contract
Post Level :International Consultant
Languages Required :
Starting Date :
(date when the selected candidate is expected to start)



Conflict not only tears countries apart but also leads to divided societies plagued by political and social tensions and grievances. Violence and armed conflicts undermine efforts to foster inclusive, peaceful societies and prevent countries from establishing robust and stable democratic institutions needed for peace and development. Indeed, if not tackled adequately and quickly, initial societal unrest and tensions can degenerate into prolonged conflict causing many victims and widespread devastation. Moreover, the socio-economic costs related to post-conflict reconstruction are often enormous, making the investment in prevention a far better option.

Credible electoral processes are essential for conferring legitimacy to the national and local governments. When successful, electoral processes offer the means of channelling social conflict into respectful and constructive debate and provide the opportunity to citizens to voice their preference and elect their representatives. They can offer a safe, predictable, rule-bound method for arbitrating political and social conflict through the selection of representatives and confer the legitimacy garnered by the consent of the people for programs and policies. On the other hand, precisely because the elections are about the competition for political power, they can be catalysts of existing conflict in society.

While there are different sources and types of conflicts, political events such as elections, particularly in fragile states, have the potential to trigger conflicts and violence. Indeed, all stages of the electoral cycle pose a risk of sparking violence, including political intimidation before and during voting, escalation of social tensions when approaching the election day, or political crises that may emerge after the elections. Experiences from around the world show that elections, which are simultaneously exercises of human rights, freedom of expression, and a key element of democratic governance, can be a catalyst or accelerator of conflict. Therefore, there is a clear urgency to understand the complicated nexus between elections and conflict prevention.


Organizational Context

The EC UNDP Joint Task Force in Electoral Assistance (JTF) was established in 2007, to further strengthen and facilitate the already existing EC-UNDP partnership in the field of electoral assistance and improve the overall efficiency and adherence of the projects to the common EC-UNDP strategic approach. The JTF monitors and supports the EC-UNDP Partnership in Electoral Assistance, which, since 2004, has seen over $1 billion of EU funds support UNDP-implemented electoral assistance projects in approximately 50 countries


While the EC-UNDP Joint Task Force on Electoral Assistance will lead the overall coordination and support, the entire process (studies/toolbox/workshops/pilot) is expected to be driven in equal parts by all relevant EU and UN entities, including UNDP, European External Action Service (EEAS), European Commission, European Parliament and other relevant EU and UN entities. They will provide input and expertise at all stages of the development and review of the toolbox. Moreover, their experience, analysis and expectations will be the main driving force behind the process. As such, this project is envisaged and designed to be a close collaborative effort at the institutional level between the EU and the UN.  

Duties and Responsibilities

Under the overall guidance of the UNDP Senior Electoral Advisor of the Joint EC-UNDP Task Force on Electoral Assistance (JTF) in close cooperation with the other team members, the Junior Consultant will support the work of the Senior Consultant and undertake the following tasks:


  • Assist with the research and drafting of the policy and research studies of the existing UN/UNDP and EU policy framework, outlining relevant documents, experiences and best practices regarding electoral conflict;
  • Support the Senior Consultant in the analysis of the existing architecture of conflict prevention and elections within the EU (DEVCO/EEAS) and UN (secretariat)/UNDP, as well as providing an overview of other actors (governments, international organizations, NGOs, media, etc.) in the electoral conflict prevention.
  • Assist the Senior Consultant in drafting a research paper for presentation at the conference, presenting the tools at the disposal of EU and UN for electoral conflict prevention and mitigation; 
  • Assist with the drafting of a thematic research study to provide an insight on various key areas linked to conflict prevention and mitigation, such as the role of civil society organisations, media, political parties, dialogue, electoral dispute resolution, early warning mechanisms
  • Support the conduct of in-depth regional studies, including desk reviews, possible field visits and interviews (in person and remotely – to be confirmed) with key stakeholders, on the issue of electoral conflict prevention in five regions (Europe/CIS, Asia, Africa, Middle East and Latin America);
  • Based on the research studies and feedback from the Country Offices and EU Delegations, assist the Senior Consultant in producing a first draft of the toolbox of options for the use by UNDP projects, EU Delegations, Election Management Bodies and other stakeholders in preventing and mitigating electoral conflict;
  • Support the planning and organization of a large international conference, expected in June in Brussels. This will include logistics arrangements, administrative details (booking of the rooms, speakers, catering, etc…)






  • At the end of each month, the consultant must submit a progress report to be approved by the management.
  • Final report must be submitted and approved by the management prior to making the final payment.



Institutional Arrangements

  • This assignment is Brussels-based. The consultant must have a legal right to live and work in Belgium. Please note that the office unfortunately cannot provide any assistance in obtaining a work or residency permit.

Payments will be made upon submission of a detailed time sheet, respective deliverables and certificate of payment form, and approval and confirmation by the Senior Electoral Advisor. 



  • Demonstrates integrity by modelling the UN’s values and ethical standards;
  • Promotes the vision, mission and strategic goals of the UN system;
  • Displays cultural, gender, religion, race, nationality and age sensitivity and adaptability.



  • Experience in conducting research and analysis in the field of elections, law, international relations or related studies;
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills;
  • Excellent interpersonal and diplomatic skills;
  • Ability to set and meet deadlines;
  • Ability and willingness to work as part of a dynamic, multi-tasking team.

If required, willing and able to conduct short missions in the UNDP country offices world-wide.

Required Skills and Experience


  • University degree in the field of International relations, Law, Political Science or related subject. Research experience a plus.


  • At least one previous post and/or internship, preferably in the field of elections/politics/international affairs/human rights and with proven research activities.
  • Experience with research and/or report writing
  • Familiarity with EU and/or UN/UNDP project and inter-agency coordination an asset.


  • Fluency (written and spoken) in English is required.
  • Knowledge of other UN languages an asset.
  • Candidates must have the legal right to live and work in Belgium.

Evaluation of Applicants


Application Evaluation Process

Individual consultants will be evaluated based on the cumulative analysis methodology (weighted scoring method), where the award of the contract will 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 technical and financial criteria specific to the solicitation.

Technical Criteria weight: [70%]

Financial Criteria weight: [30%]

Only Individual Consultants obtaining a minimum of 49 points (70%) on the Technical evaluation will be considered for the Financial Evaluation.

Technical Criteria - 70% of total evaluation – max. 70 points:

  • At least one previous post and/or internship, preferably in the field of elections/politics/international affairs/human rights (20 points)
  • Experience with research and/or report writing (20 points)
  • Familiarity with EU and/or UN/UNDP electoral assistance project and inter-agency coordination an asset. (20 points)
  • Knowledge of other UN languages an asset (10 points)

Financial Criteria – 30% of total evaluation – maximum 30 points:

The following formula will be used to evaluate financial proposal:

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

UNDP will apply a fair and transparent selection process that will take into account both the technical qualification of Individual Consultants as well as their price proposals. The contract will be awarded to the candidate obtaining the highest combined technical and financial scores. Please go the following link for the General Conditions of Individual Contracts: http://www.undp.org/content/dam/undp/documents/procurement/documents/IC%20-%20General%20Conditions.pdf   


Application procedures

Application Submission Process

The application submission is a two-step process. Failing to comply with the submission process may result in disqualifying the applications:


Step 1: Interested individual consultants must include the following documents when submitting the applications in UNDP job shop (Please note that only 1 (one) file can be uploaded therefore please include all docs in one file):

  • Personal History Form (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 (the template can be downloaded from this link: http://sas.undp.org/Documents/P11_Personal_history_form.doc


Step 2: Submission of Financial Proposal

Applicants are instructed to submit their financial proposals in US Dollars for this consultancy to procurement.be@undp.org using the financial proposal template available here: http://procurement-notices.undp.org/view_file.cfm?doc_id=45780. The proposals should be sent via email with the following subject heading: Junior Researcher– Research and drafting of studies for the EC-UNDP Electoral Conflict Prevention Toolbox” no later than 21 December 2016.


Proposals should be based on a monthly lump sum. Proposals received after the deadline will be rejected. In order to assist the requesting unit in the comparison of financial proposals, the financial proposal should be all-inclusive and include a breakdown. The term ‘all-inclusive” implies that all costs (professional fees, communications, utilities, consumables, insurance, taxes, etc.) that could possibly be incurred by the Contractor are already factored into the financial proposal.  Travel to duty stations might be involved, therefore expected expenses from and to duty stations is required in the financial proposal.


Please note that consultants are responsible for meeting their legal obligations in terms of taxes and/or any other legal requirements (insurance, social security, pension contributions, etc.….) in Belgium and/or their home countries. Any fees associated with those payments must be included in the monthly lump sum payment. No additional payments outside the monthly lump sum payment, will be made by the UNDP.


Incomplete applications will not be considered. Please make sure you have provided all requested materials


UNDP retains the right to contact references directly.

Payments will be made only upon confirmation by UNDP that contract obligations have been delivered 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 dss.un.org.

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.


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.

If you are experiencing difficulties with online job applications, please contact jobs.help@undp.org.

© 2016 United Nations Development Programme