Consultant for Market Labour and Market Assessment

Location : Kurdistan, IRAQ
Application Deadline :27-Feb-19 (Midnight New York, USA)
Additional Category :Crisis Response
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 :65 Working Days
Expected Duration of Assignment :65 Working Days


According to UNCHR, there are at least 251,000 Syrian refugees in Iraq, with 97% of them located in the Kurdistan Region (KRI)[1]. Most of the refugees arrived at the end of 2012 through 2013 when the Syrian civil war increased in intensity. Shortly after, in 2014, Iraq too became insecure and unstable. The internal displacement of more than three million Iraqis, almost one-third to the same areas where Syrians were living[2], multiplied the number of people in need, made livelihoods opportunities more difficult to access due to competition, and put a heavy strain on the local host communities’ resources. The political, social, and security crises in Iraq caused continuous population movements and displacement that has affected the refugee response efforts.

Syrian refugees were granted the right to attain work permits in the KRI and enrol in public schools[3], and with linguistic similarities, they are able to work and integrate. However, Syrian refugees do not necessarily have high levels of financial security to match the high rate of employment. Cash assistance and access to employment are top needs reported indicating insufficient incomes to cover basic needs[4]. In addition, the protracted displacement of Syrian refugees has caused many to exhaust existing coping strategies, and more than two-thirds of households are currently in debt.

There is a significant difference between the city centre areas, and periphery towns and camps. Camp residents, while having the right to attain work permits, find themselves geographically isolated. Access to informal sources of financing for business activities is more difficult for Syrian refugees than host community members, as they lack the extensive social networks. Youth whose education was interrupted by their displacement find it difficult to continue their education in institutions with differing language and curriculum, or the need to contribute to household income. Exacerbated by the financial crisis in Iraq and the KRI, the market salary rate for low skilled Syrian refugees is often lower than the federal minimum wage. Skilled workers are often forced to take low skilled work, or even daily labour. There exists a prevalence of low-quality and low productivity jobs, with weak enforcement of laws, allowing for employers to hire informally and below the minimum wage. Moreover, this creates caveats giving rise to labour exploitation practices, including unsound working conditions, which neglect basic protection measures to safeguard already vulnerable individuals from further harm. Coincidingly with a large number of host community members from the public sector entering the private sector due to the government’s fiscal crisis, more competition for livelihoods opportunities is a potential cause of social tension. 

In 2018, countries with significant populations of Syrian refugees have begun to look for durable solutions to the refugee crisis and needs. As some refugees have been displaced for up to six years, strategic livelihoods interventions are needed to address their needs and vulnerabilities. In order to design new approaches and durable solutions to livelihoods challenges, there is a need for increased information of location-based needs,  skills needs for different sectors, skills demand in the labour market, refugee intentions (based on areas of return), interest and ability to return. Moreover, information is required to take account for appropriate Government policies, programmes and labour market trends affecting the employment prospects of refugees.

  1. Objective/Purpose

During 2016-2017, the mass displacement of Iraqis from Mosul and surrounding areas, and other conflict zones, has resulted in fewer resources – both financial and humanitarian efforts – designated for Syrian refugee response. With the return of most Iraqi IDPs[5], and the lengthy displacement of Syrian refugees, there is a need to understand the means by which to enhance Syrian refugee’s access to gainful employment opportunities, both in and out of camp settings. Importantly, to attain the necessary information, assessments studying the local labour market and market trends will provide information to inform existing demand and supply strategies.

Currently, the livelihoods sector and most organisations responding to Syrian refugees in the KRI rely on a few multi-sectoral assessments conducted several years ago, or undertake small, highly-localized assessments for a specific project. No comprehensive, livelihood-specific, large-scale labour and market assessments have been undertaken recently in the post-ISIL context, covering the whole of the KRI. There is a major need to develop a more strategic, holistic response plan for Syrian refugees, and such an assessment would be the primary tool for use by the livelihood stakeholders in Iraq.

Thus, the Syrian Refugee Labour and Market Assessment (LMA) will identify and provide practical recommendations specific to the Syrian refugee population in KRI, for both in-camp and out-of-camp populations:

  1. Mapping of existing skills and capacities for employment and possible gaps in relation to the job market requirements, assessing profiles and preferences of workers.
  2. Identification of specific job market skills that can be expected to lead to employment on the demand side strategies & actors, and potential employers/sectors on the supply side strategies that can create meaningful, sustainable job opportunities for job-seekers.
  3. A review of the over-saturated sectors and areas where intervention is least needed;
  4. Review of existing labour market institutions, regulations and policies, to provide recommendations in order to enable the development and implementation of a KRI-wide, evidence-based, durable livelihoods strategy for Syrian refugees.
  5. Mapping of the market value chain, exploring existing challenges to Syrian refugees, opportunities and Syrian refugee engagement in the local market place.
  6. Market supply, demand, pricing and operating environment for Syrian refugees.

Conditions of market access and requirements; distribution channels, power of market participants, existing infrastructure, policy


[1] UNHCR ( December 31st 2018) Operational Portal: Refugee Situations. Available from: Accessed: 15/01/2018

[2] IOM Iraq, Displacement Tracking Matrix, October 2017

[3] “Displacement as challenge and opportunity – Urban profile: Refugees, internally displaced persons and host community” (November 2016) jointly prepared by UN and government agencies.

[4]UNHCR (May 2018) 3RP Regional Refugee & Resilience Plan 2017-2018: Information Kit - Syrian Refugees - Iraq. (No.17).

[5] IOM Iraq, Displacement Tracking Matrix, 31 August 2018

Duties and Responsibilities

Scope of Work:

The potential candidate that will undertake both the labour and market assessment needs to develop and submit a proposal with a clear approach, methodology, implementation plan, budget and other relevant strategies to be able to cover the scope of work and deliver quality results.

To ensure both assessments produce quality results and recommendations, potential applicants (local or international organizations) should consider the main approaches mentioned below, when undertaking the scope of work:

  • Conduct desk research about the context, response and experience of Syrian refugees in Iraq and the wider region since 2011
  • Design both a labour and market assessment questionnaire for refugees, as well as host community members, private sector actors, government actors and coordinating bodies, as well as the humanitarian and development community working with Syrian refugees in the KRI. The latter set of stakeholders could be consulted for developing the questionnaires.
  • Cover refugees and refugee issues on and off camp, in rural, urban and peri-urban areas: including legal, educational, access, and financial/economic issues
    • Conduct analysis by geographical area, identifying the challenges and resources/opportunities, or lack of, in different geographical areas. For off-camp areas, a sample of areas can be taken to be assessed. For camp areas, minimum 2 refugee camps in each governorate should be included in the study (as well as Gawilan camp).
  • Produce clear, well-written reports presenting the survey data as well as mapping of the labour market and KRI market, focusing on Syrian refugees.

1) Labour Market Assessment:

Firstly, the final labour market report should cover, but not limit itself to, similar areas under the following chapters:

  1. Introduction – Objectives of the study
  2. Structure of the Kurdistan Region of Iraq Labour Market
    1. Current response – who is doing what, where and when
      1. Provide camp and off camp data, as well as urban, peri-urban and rural across the KRI
      2. Sample data from two camps per governorate (six camps), and agreed upon off camp locations
    2. Overview of the existing labour force
    3. Job typologies and locations
  3. Developing Labour Market Policies and Institutions
    1.  Supply-Side Strategies and Actors
    2. Existing Demand-Side Strategies and Actors
    3. Labour policies and regulations
  4. Current needs and gaps:
    1. Livelihoods
    2. Labour Market Analysis
  5. Opportunities for further integration of refugees and their small businesses into the local economy and access to stable livelihoods and income earning potential.
  6. Constraints and challenges:
    1. For recovery of small businesses and local markets in returnee areas.
    2. That can cause returnees to become displaced for a second time.
  7. Impact identifying the effect of Syrian refugees and livelihoods interventions on the host community
  8. Recommendations
    1. Emerging opportunities and policy implications
    2. Key findings
    3. Framework for a Comprehensive Jobs Strategy

2) Market Assessment:

Secondly, Focusing on Syrian refugees, the final market assessment report should cover, but not limit itself to, similar areas under the following chapter headings:

Executive Summary, Background, Objective, Key findings, Recommendations, Introduction/Background, Impact of Syrian Refugee population on the KRI economy, Humanitarian Response and Cash Based Interventions, Methodology, Market Supply Chain, Supply Demand and Pricing, Housing Market, Housing Availability, Status and Affordability, Movement patterns of Syrian Refugees.

Expected Outcome:

Evidence-based livelihoods interventions providing durable support to Syrian refugees to enable them to become self-reliant in accessing basic needs for their households without relying on aid or resorting to negative coping mechanisms.

Output 1:

One assessment conducted on the Labour Market across the KRI, focusing on Syrian refugees.

Minimum Activities;

  1. Conduct desk research on the background and context in Iraq and the KRI
  2. Hold meetings with stakeholders to design questionnaires
  3. Conduct field assessments throughout the KRI to collect the data
  4. Conduct key informant interviews with community leaders, local authorities and private sector actors
  5. Write detailed reports in English and submit to UNDP for approval


Output 2:

One assessment conducted on the KRI Market, focusing on Syrian refugees.

  1. Conduct desk research on the background and context in Iraq and the KRI
  2. Hold meetings with stakeholders to design questionnaires
  3. Conduct field assessments throughout the KRI to collect the data
  4. Conduct key informant interviews with community leaders, local authorities and private sector actors.

Write detailed reports in English and submit to UNDP for approval



  • Knowledgeable of the local economic and political context, and able to identify and connect with relevant stakeholders
  • Ability to produce clear, well-written reports for a diverse audience of development entities, government authorities, private sector actors, etc., presenting the required information in English

Required Skills and Experience

Institutional Arrangements:

Project Authority:  The work under this TOR will be supervised by the ICRRP Livelihoods Component Lead; approval and payment to be authorized by the ICRRP Livelihood Component Lead and Programme Manager.

The consultant/s will be expected to independently liaise, contact and coordinate with all relevant stakeholders, including but not limited to those listed in the Scope of Work section. UNDP Project team will be able to assist in providing contact details when possible or as needed.

Duration of the Work:

The work of the Project is expected to be performed immediately upon signature for a duration of 65 working days. The work will focus on Syrian refugees across the whole KRI, in rural, peri-urban and urban areas, to be agreed with UNDP before undertaking the assignment.

Duty Station:

The consultant is expected to organize their own travel as needed around the KRI – Erbil, Duhok and Sulaymaniyah – to conduct field research and interview relevant stakeholders (including but not limited to those listed in the Scope of Work section.


The applicant would be responsible for his/her workstation (and for any team members, if applicable), transportation, materials and equipment required for the implementation of the study and should therefore include the relevant costs in the financial proposal.

The technical and financial proposal should include any team members, the applicant deems necessary to carry out the study.

Reports can be submitted by e-mail to the Project Authority. In person meetings may be required at the discretion of the Project Authority in Erbil


Academic Qualifications:

Master’s degree in economics, data analysis, development or a related field 

 Years of experience:

  • Minimum 7 years’ experience in managing similar projects and activities focusing on labour and market analysis within humanitarian settings.  
  • Specialized expertise in strategic planning of market based and livelihoods/ development initiatives


Special skills requirements

Language: Experience in the local context and ability to speak local languages

There is no requirement for the number of team members; the team should be able to conduct a comprehensive study, as discussed in the Scope of Work and Expected Outputs, in the specified duration. The team’s combined competencies and qualifications will be evaluated as per the Evaluation Criteria


The applicant shall submit a price proposal as below:

  • Daily Fee The applicant shall propose a daily fee, which should be inclusive of his/her professional fee, local communication cost and insurance (inclusive of medical health insurance and evacuation).
  • Daily subsistence allowance (DSA) for the number of days the consultant would spend in the duty station;
  • Travel & Visa – The applicant shall propose an estimated lump-sum for home-Erbil-home travel (economy most direct route) and Iraq entry visa expenses. The total professional fee shall be converted into a lump-sum contract and payments under the contract shall be made on submission and acceptance of deliverables under the contract in accordance with the schedule of payment linked with deliverables. Payments for travel, visa, insurance and such other expenses will be made in the form of reimbursement for the actual expenses incurred (receipts submitted) and not based on the estimate provided in the financial proposal. However, a realistic estimate of such costs must be included in the financial proposal. 
  • In the financial proposal, the applicant shall include the costs (Fee, subsistence allowance, travel etc) of any team members/personnel which he/she might need to hire to facilitate the study locally.

The whole of the fee will be divided into three instalments corresponding to the approval of three deliverables as below:



Estimated Payment Tranches %


Submission of the Inception Report, Detailed Work Plan within the first 10 days



After submission of a brief mid-term report, interim labour market assessment report and interim market assessment report, within 45 days.



Submission of the final report drafts and clearance by UNDP of final reports at 65 days.



Individual consultants will be evaluated based on the following methodology:


The award of the contract shall be made to the individual consultant whose offer has been evaluated and determined as:

a) responsive/compliant/acceptable, and

b) Having received the highest score out of a pre-determined set of weighted technical and financial criteria specific to the solicitation.


* Technical Criteria: weight 70%

* Financial Criteria weight 30%

Only candidates obtaining a minimum of 70% of the total technical score would be considered for the Financial Evaluation


Technical Criteria – Maximum 70 points

Only candidates obtaining a minimum of 49 points (70% of the total technical points) would be considered for the Financial Evaluation.

Technical Criteria 70 points

Technical Proposal (30 marks)

  • Technical Approach & Methodology (20 marks) – Explain the understanding of the objectives of assignment, approach to the services, methodology for carrying out the activities and obtaining the expected output, and the degree of detail of such output. The Applicant should also explain the methodologies proposed to adopt and highlight the compatibility of those methodologies with the proposed approach.
  • Work Plan (10 marks) – The Applicant should propose the main activities of the assignment, their content and duration, phasing and interrelations, milestones (including interim approvals by the Client), and delivery dates. The proposed work plan should be consistent with the technical approach and methodology, showing understanding of the TOR and ability to translate them into a feasible working plan.

Qualification and Experience (40 marks) [evaluation of CV]:

  • General Qualification (20 marks);
  • Experience relevant to the assignment (20 marks);

Documents to be included when submitting the proposals:

Interested individual consultants must submit the following documents/information to demonstrate their qualifications in one single PDF document:

  • Duly accomplished Confirmation of Interest and Submission of Financial Proposal Template using the template provided by UNDP (Annex II);  
  • Personal CV or 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.

Technical proposal:

  • Brief description of why the individual considers him/herself as the most suitable for the assignment;

A methodology, on how they will approach and complete the assignment and work plan as indicated above.


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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