TERMINAL EVALUATION - "Land degradation offset and Mitigation in Western Mongolia" project

Advertised on behalf of :

Location : Ulaanbaatar, MONGOLIA
Application Deadline :24-Jan-19 (Midnight New York, USA)
Additional Category :Sustainable Development and Poverty Reduction
Type of Contract :Individual Contract
Post Level :International Consultant
Languages Required :
Starting Date :
(date when the selected candidate is expected to start)
Duration of Initial Contract :20 working days
Expected Duration of Assignment :Over the period of 4 months


In accordance with UNDP and GEF M&E policies and procedures, all full and medium-sized UNDP support GEF financed projects are required to undergo a terminal evaluation upon completion of implementation. These terms of reference (TOR) sets out the expectations for a Terminal Evaluation (TE) of Land degradation offset and Mitigation in Western Mongolia (PIMS#5287).

Duties and Responsibilities

Objective of the scope

The TE will be conducted according to the guidance, rules and procedures established by UNDP and GEF as reflected in the UNDP Evaluation Guidance for GEF Financed Projects.

The objectives of the evaluation are to assess the achievement of project results, and to draw lessons that can both improve the sustainability of benefits from this project, and aid in the overall enhancement of UNDP programming.

The objective of the project is to implement and adopt Best Environmental Practices (BEP) and Best Available Technologies (BAT) in assisting the Government of Mongolia to reduce negative impacts of mining on rangelands in the western mountain and steppe region by incorporating mitigation hierarchy and offset for land degradation into the landscape level planning and management. 

The project will strengthen the policy, legal and planning framework governing the environmental impacts of mining, demonstrate best practice approaches, build capacity and facilitate a cross-sectoral collaboration for land management and planning at the landscape level. By completing the Western Region eco- regional assessment, the project will assist the Government of Mongolia to develop and implement the national mitigation hierarchy and offsetting framework to address direct and indirect mining threats to pasture and water resources, ecosystems and local livelihood.

The project will support the incorporation of the principles and the results of eco-regional assessment into land use planning across 41.5 million hectares of mountain and steppe landscapes in the Western Aimags.  The selected pilot landscapes are 1. Bukhmuren Soum of Uvs Aimag, with “Khotgor”, “Erchim-Nuurst Khotgor” and “Khotgor Shanaga” open-cast coal mines, 2. Durvuljin and Erdenekhairan Soums of Zavkhan Aimag with “Bayan Airag” open pit gold mine, and 3. Darvi Soum of Khovd Aimag with “Khushuut” open-cast coal mines .

Feasibility study for the potential pilot sites, was conducted over a period from September, 2014 to January 2015 through extensive consultation with key stakeholders in Western provinces and Government.   The feasibility study has identified the potential   sites based on consolidated recommendations on specific landscapes, eco regional zones, water catchment areas, protected areas, and mining activities

The project consists of 2 main components:

The first component will support further development of the mitigation hierarchy and offsetting framework for land degradation in the planning and management system of mining concessions at the national level, in order to reduce threats to land and water resources and ecosystem integrity. It will emplace participatory and eco-regional assessments as the basis for integrated land use planning by the Government across 41.5 million ha of production system and natural habitat in western Mongolia. This will be achieved by incorporating science-based mitigation hierarchy into mining concession planning and provincial land use planning and management of competing land use types, and setting aside ecologically sensitive areas from mining related development. Institutional and personnel capacity for  mitigating and offsetting the impacts of mining will be developed  for local level.

The second project component will demonstrate  application of the mitigation hierarchy and offsets to mining impacts through integrated SLM practices within selected pilot landscapes in the western provinces. Local herders and farmers, as primary resource users, and local Government will implement landscape-level land use plans to address land degradation challenges from competing uses. Specifically, the project will pilot best practice operationalization of the mitigation hierarchy and land degradation offset mechanisms in the selected landscapes by the mining companies. Integrated landscape management and offset mechanisms will be demonstrated covering at lea t I00,000 ha with prominent mining concessions and other competing land uses. Increased investments in SLM actions in the landscape will help to rehabilitate lands, and reduce the projected rate of land degradation and biodiversity loss.

The Project has primary results summarized below:

  • Ecoregional assessment (ERA) results have been integrated into long term land management plans and policy documents in target aimags and soums.  
  • The training program for integrated planning and management with incorporation of eco-regional assessment into land use plans and the mining offset principle was implemented for all related stakeholders of Western Mongolia. As a result, 4 mining companies have developed offset plans and 9 soum development plans based on ERA results in close collaboration with local residents and authorities.
  • Since 2016, the project implementation unit's local technical committee was established and started its initiative towards designing and expanding protected areas (PA) network based on eco-regional assessments which resulted in approval by the Government and Parliament of Mongolia on establishment of number of protected areas in western aimags. As of 2018, 51.8% /21,516,605 ha/ of the total area of Western region have been established as Local PAs and registered in the cadastre database of the Mineral Resources and Petroleum Authority of Mongolia.  
  • The PIU has completed drafting and developing the law amendments and regulations and guidelines and submitted at Ministerial level. The approval of these legal documents is of significant importance to the sustainability of project outcomes in the future.
  • Capacity score on land degradation mitigation and offset is 50.2 /56.4%/ in 2017. This indicates 13.8% increase from the baseline level.
  • Biodiversity and land offsetting plans were developed by 4 mining companies in western Mongolia taking into account the importance of involving local communities for effective conservation. With close collaboration with different partners and active lobbying, the offset plans are covering 59,061 ha areas by 4 Mining companies.
  • 2018 budget for Environmental management plan of the target mining sites shows increase of 76% compared to that of 2014. 
  • Total 985 ha of land is rehabilitated by small innovation projects in pilot areas.

Evaluation approach and method

An overall approach and method for conducting project terminal evaluations of UNDP supported GEF financed projects have been developed over time. The evaluator is expected to frame the evaluation effort using the criteria of relevance, effectiveness, efficiency, sustainability, and impact, as defined and explained in the UNDP Guidance for Conducting Terminal Evaluations of UNDP-supported, GEF-financed Projects. A set of questions covering each of these criteria have been drafted and are included with this TOR (see Annex C). The evaluator is expected to amend, complete and submit this matrix as part of an evaluation inception report, and shall include it as an annex to the final report.

The evaluation must provide evidence-based information that is credible, reliable and useful. The evaluator is expected to follow a participatory and consultative approach ensuring close engagement with government counterparts, in particular the GEF operational focal point, UNDP Country Office, project team, UNDP GEF Technical Adviser based in the region and key stakeholders. Interviews will be held with the following organizations and individuals at a minimum:

Key stakeholders:

  • Target provinces and soums
  • The Ministry of Urban planning and Construction
  • The State Agency on Land Geodesy and Cadastr
  • The Ministry of Heavy Industry and Mining
  • The Nature Conservancy
  • Green Gold NGO
  • WWF
  • Mongolian Academy of Science
  • Mining companies in target areas


The evaluator will review all relevant sources of information, such as the project document, project reports – including Annual APR/PIR, project budget revisions, midterm review, progress reports, GEF focal area tracking tools, project files, national strategic and legal documents, and any other materials that the evaluator considers useful for this evidence-based assessment. A list of documents that the project team will provide to the evaluator for review is included in Annex B of this Terms of Reference.

Evaluation Criteria & Ratings

An assessment of project performance will be carried out, based against expectations set out in the Project Logical Framework/Results Framework (see Annex A), which provides performance and impact indicators for project implementation along with their corresponding means of verification. The evaluation will at a minimum cover the criteria of: relevance, effectiveness, efficiency, sustainability and impact. Ratings must be provided on the following performance criteria. The completed table must be included in the evaluation executive summary. The obligatory rating scales are included in Annex D.

Evaluation Ratings:

1. Monitoring and Evaluation


2. IA& EA Execution


M&E design at entry


Quality of UNDP Implementation


M&E Plan Implementation


Quality of Execution - Executing Agency


Overall quality of M&E


Overall quality of Implementation / Execution


3. Assessment of Outcomes


4. Sustainability




Financial resources:








Institutional framework and governance:


Overall Project Outcome Rating


Environmental :




Overall likelihood of sustainability:


Project finance / cofinance

The Evaluation will assess the key financial aspects of the project, including the extent of co-financing planned and realized. Project cost and funding data will be required, including annual expenditures. Variances between planned and actual expenditures will need to be assessed and explained. Results from recent financial audits, as available, should be taken into consideration. The evaluator(s) will receive assistance from the Country Office (CO) and Project Team to obtain financial data in order to complete the co-financing table below, which will be included in the terminal evaluation report.



UNDP own financing (mill. US$)


(mill. US$)

Partner Agency

(mill. US$)


(mill. US$)














280. 000

280. 000








280. 000

280. 000



  • In-kind support





280. 000

280. 000



  • Other














280. 000

280. 000
















UNDP supported GEF financed projects are key components in UNDP country programming, as well as regional and global programmes. The evaluation will assess the extent to which the project was successfully mainstreamed with other UNDP priorities, including poverty alleviation, improved governance, the prevention and recovery from natural disasters, and gender.


The evaluators will assess the extent to which the project is achieving impacts or progressing towards the achievement of impacts. Key findings that should be brought out in the evaluations include whether the project has demonstrated: a) verifiable improvements in ecological status, b) verifiable reductions in stress on ecological systems, and/or c) demonstrated progress towards these impact achievements.[2]

Conclusions, recommendations & lessons

The evaluation report must include a chapter providing a set of conclusions, recommendations and lessons. Conclusions should build on findings and be based in evidence. Recommendations should be prioritized, specific, relevant, and targeted, with suggested implementers of the recommendations. Lessons should have wider applicability to other initiatives across the region, the area of intervention, and for the future. 

Implementation arrangements

The principal responsibility for managing this evaluation resides with the UNDP CO in Mongolia. The UNDP CO will contract the evaluators and ensure the timely provision of per diems and travel arrangements within the country for the evaluation team. The Project Team will be responsible for liaising with the Evaluators team to set up stakeholder interviews, arrange field visits, coordinate with the Government etc.

Evaluation timeframe

The total duration of the evaluation will be 20days according to the following indicative plan:


Timing (indicative)

Completion Date (indicative)

Preparation (desk review)

7 days (February, 2019)

15 March, 2019

Evaluation Mission (in-country field visits, interviews and presentation of preliminary findings)

Up to 10 days (20 March, 2019)

10 April, 2019

Draft Evaluation Report

6 days (April , 2019)

25 April, 2019

Final Report

4 days (April, 2019)

31 May, 2019

Evaluation deliverables

The evaluation team is expected to deliver the following:





Inception Report

Evaluator provides clarifications on timing and method

No later than 1 week before the evaluation mission. (by 15 March, 2019)

Evaluator submits to UNDP CO and Project


Initial Findings

Last day of the field mission (Friday, by 18 April)

Project Team, UNDP CO and key stakeholders, members of Project Board

Draft Final Report

Draft evaluation report, (per annexed template) with annexes

Within two weeks time after the field mission (by 14 May 2019)

Project team, CO, reviewed by RTA, GEF OFP

Final Report*

Final report addressing and integrating feedback and comments

Within a week time after receiving comments on the draft  (by 31 May 2019)

Sent to CO for uploading to UNDP Region.

*When submitting the final evaluation report, the evaluator is required also to provide an 'audit trail', detailing how all received comments have (and have not) been addressed in the final evaluation report. See Annex H for an audit trail template.

[1] For additional information on methods, see the Handbook on Planning, Monitoring and Evaluating for Development Results, Chapter 7, pg. 163

[2] A useful tool for gauging progress to impact is the Review of Outcomes to Impacts (ROtI) method developed by the GEF Evaluation Office: ROTI Handbook 2009


Payment modalities and specifications

The service provider will be responsible for all personal administrative and travel expenses associated with undertaking this assignment including office accommodation, printing, stationary, telephone and electronic communications, and report copies incurred in this assignment.  For this reason, the contract is prepared as a lump sum contract.

The remuneration of work performed will be conducted as follows: lump sum payable in 1 installment, upon satisfactory completion and approval by UNDP of all deliverables, including the Final Evaluation Report.




Following submission and approval (UNDP-CO and UNDP RTA) of the final terminal evaluation report

Application process


Recommended Presentation of Proposal: 


  1. Letter of Confirmation of Interest and Availability using the template provided in the attachment;
  2. CV and a Personal History Form (P11 form) - attached;
  3. Brief description of approach to work/technical proposal of why the individual considers him/herself as the most suitable for the assignment, and a proposed methodology on how they will approach and complete the assignment; (max 1 page)
  4. Financial Proposal that indicates the all-inclusive fixed total contract price and all other travel related costs (such as flight ticket, per diem, etc), supported by a breakdown of costs, as per template attached to the Letter of Confirmation of Interest template.  If an applicant is employed by an organization/company/institution, and he/she expects his/her employer to charge a management fee in the process of releasing him/her to UNDP under Reimbursable Loan Agreement (RLA), the applicant must indicate at this point, and ensure that all such costs are duly incorporated in the financial proposal submitted to UNDP. 

All application materials should be submitted to the e-mail address (bids.mn@undp.org) with reference “ International Consultant for UNDP-GEF Project ,“ Land Degradation Offset and Mitigation in Western Mongolia  Terminal Review” This email address is being protected from spam bots, you need Javascript enabled to view it by ____________).  Incomplete applications will be excluded from further consideration.


  • Financial proposals must be “all inclusive” and expressed in a lump-sum for the total duration of the contract. The term “all inclusive” implies all cost (professional fees, travel costs, living allowances etc.);
  • For duty travels, the UN’s Daily Subsistence Allowance (DSA) rates are Durvuljin soum, Zavkhan province and include DSA rate for Ulaanbaatar (fill for all travel destinations), which should provide indication of the cost of living in a duty station/destination (Note: Individuals on this contract are not UN staff and are therefore not entitled to DSAs.  All living allowances required to perform the demands of the ToR must be incorporated in the financial proposal, whether the fees are expressed as daily fees or lump sum amount.)


Statement of Medical Fitness for Work

Individual Consultants/Contractors whose assignments require travel and who are over 60 years of age are required, at their own costs, to undergo a full medical examination including x-rays and obtaining medical clearance from UN –approved doctor, prior to taking up their assignment.

Where there is no UN office nor a UN Medical Doctor present in the location of the Individual Contractor prior to commencing the travel, either for repatriation or duty travel, the Individual Contractor may choose his/her own preferred physician to obtain the required medical clearance.


Individual Contractors are required to have vaccinations/inoculations when travelling to certain countries, as designated by the UN Medical Director.  The cost of required vaccinations/inoculations, when foreseeable, must be included in the financial proposal.  Any unforeseeable vaccination/inoculation cost will be reimbursed by UNDP.




No. of days

February, 2019


Up to 10 working days trip

10 overnights

Field missions to (location), including the following project sites (list):

  1. Ulaanbaatar (Country office, Project Management Unit UNDP, Project National Partners);
  2. Zavkhan province Durvuljin soum


The Consultant will be requested to undertake the Basic Security in the Field (BSIF) training and Advanced Security in the Field (ASIF). These requirements apply for all Consultants, attracted individually or through the Employer.


The security charges are applicable. UNDP project will provide the Consultant with following:

  • Project documents (see list of documents on page 16);
  • Organize meetings with Project partners;
  • Working place;
  • Interpreter if needed.  

Required Skills and Experience

The evaluation team will be composed of 1 international consultant.  The consultant shall have prior experience in evaluating similar projects. The international Consultant has responsibility over submission of a final report. The evaluator selected should not have participated in the project preparation and/or implementation and should not have conflict of interest with project related activities. The project will provide an interpreter to accompany the international consultant during the mission to Mongolia. 

The International Consultant must present the following qualifications:

  • A Master’s degree in natural  science;
  • Minimum 7 years of professional experience in the fields of land or environmental management;
  • Proven track record of evaluation of projects focusing on environmental assessment performance with at least two project evaluations;
  • At least one project evaluation with GEF M&E policies and procedures;
  • Experience in working in Central Asian or CIS countries will be an asset;
  • Fluency in English. Knowledge in Mongolian is an asset.

Evaluator Ethics

Evaluation consultants will be held to the highest ethical standards and are required to sign a Code of Conduct (Annex E) upon acceptance of the assignment. UNDP evaluations are conducted in accordance with the principles outlined in the UNEG 'Ethical Guidelines for Evaluations'

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 erecruit.helpdesk@undp.org.

© 2016 United Nations Development Programme