International Consultant – Vocational Education and Training System Evaluation Expert


Location : Home Based with 2 field mission in Albania ( 5 days each), ALBANIA
Application Deadline :11-Mar-19 (Midnight New York, USA)
Type of Contract :Individual Contract
Post Level :International Consultant
Languages Required :
English  
Expected Duration of Assignment :50 working days during the period April –September 2019

Background

Albania is a middle-income country that over the past two and half decades has made a significant stride in establishing a consolidated market economy. Due to strong growth performance (annual growth rate at 6%), Albania grew from the poorest nation in Europe in the early 1990s to the status of middle-income country in 2008. Despite the growth trend, the structure of the country’s economy is dominated by small enterprises (95%), which even if substantially contributing in terms of both economic growth and employment, have limited potential for job creation. With a narrow export and production base, and limited innovation capacities, the competitiveness of Albania’s economy is weak. The Albanian Government has committed to transforming the economy from an import-dependent, consumption-based, and informal economy, to one that is based on sustainable job-creation and increased productivity. As such, it has largely recognized the need to systematically address employment by re-orienting the vocational education and training system towards labour market needs and modernizing and extending the outreach of employment services.

The ‘Skills Development for Employment (SD4E) programme” will continue to support the Government of Albania in the national VET and Employment reform through a comprehensive approach of institutional capacity building on a macro/policy level, enabling key actors (MFE, NES/NAES and NAVETQ) to deliver coordinated and demand-driven services. Responding to national priorities and the objectives of the National Employment and Skills Strategy, this Swiss funded intervention has the ambition to make a systemic contribution where the Albanian VET system and Employment Service supply the labour market with a skilled workforce that contributes to sustainable and inclusive economic development of the country.

To achieve the programme purpose and finally the programme goal, the programme will focus in 3 strategic fields that will aim to improve the governance and quality of service provision in VET and employment promotion in Albania.

  1. Outcome 1: The institutional capacity of key actors in VET and Employment (Ministry, NAVETQ, NAES) is strengthened
  2. Outcome 2: The employment service portfolio is based on a balanced demand-and supply-side oriented approach
  3. Outcome 3: A standardized Quality Assurance (QA) framework is in place that improves the image of VET and fosters linkages between school and world of work.


Duties and Responsibilities

Scope of the assignment

The VET system in Albania remains largely school-based, with little exchange between the private sector and VET providers. This detachment is one of the main sources of the mismatch between skill supply and demand. Albania’s Vocational Education and Training (VET) system is an input oriented one and follows a traditional training approach, were teachers and curriculum developers designs the training programmes and curricula predominately without industry participation. The fragmented and uncoordinated governance in VET and employment is mainly a consequence of the frequent administrative changes in the Government structures associated with the fact that the responsibility for VET as a field of state governance moved from one Ministry to the other. This results in unclear roles and responsibilities in the Ministry departments and National Agencies which is worsened by a fragmented policy framework that is caused by delays in the modernization of the legal basis. The unstable organizational set-up hampers sustainable capacity building for the staff in charge of VET at all levels. Training measures are often dispersed and ad hoc, lacking a strategy and an organizational development plan.

In the recent years, the government of Albania has taken several interventions to reform the VET system and increase its labour market relevance. Yet, it is to be assessed whether these interventions have produced the desired results in terms of skills required in the labor market and equipment of VET learners with the necessary skills for their working life.

In this view, the SD4E programme is seeking to support the responsible ministry to conduct an outcome evaluation of the current VET system. The results of the evaluation will serve as basis for a reformed VET system which responds to the needs of the private sector for skilled labor force and equips VET learners with relevant skills needed in the labour market.

The evaluation should assess the following:

  • Regulatory framework and governance framework:, legal framework,, mandate and core functions; organisational and functional structure of the institutions at the central level, key national plan/policies governing the VET system;
  • VET funding arrangements based on the principles of autonomy;
  • Planning of VET delivery for different programmes of VET (secondary, post-secondary), different target groups of learners, provisions for different pathways into and from VET;
  • Quality of provision and quality assurance: teaching and learning, integration of work-based learning, quality of VET teachers’ workforce, assessment of VET learners, quality assurance arrangements, and accreditation;
  • Labor market relevance of vocational qualifications: development of occupational, qualifications, assessment standards and curricula with the participation of private sector, private sector engagement.

The evaluation should provide recommendations for a VET system which efficiently and effectively responds to the needs of the private sector for each of the functions evaluated.

The second part of the assignment aim to propose a framework for the private sector engagement in the VET system and propose an implementation plan. The engagement of the private sector in the Albanian VET system is very limited and the participation of the private sector in curricula development is almost inexistent. The expert is expected to provide recommendation for meaningful private sector engagement at each level: ministry, responsible managing institution and provider.

Deliverables

Under the overall guidance of the UNDP Programme Specialist and Project coordinator and in close collaboration with the Ministry of Finance and Economy, the consultant will be supplied and supported by the project team with all the necessary information, progress reports, analysis and other relevant documents. Main deliverables include:

  1. Outcome evaluation of the current VET system in Albania, which will map out the current model(s) of the VET policy development and implementation, taking into consideration the policy and regulatory framework, funding, organisation, participation of the private sector etc. The evaluation should lay out the elements of the international benchmarking of VET system and provide comparative analysis to one regional and two EU countries.
  2. Recommendation at the policy development and implementation level, for each institution and for each function, which will bring the VET system in Albania closer to the international benchmarking model.
  3. A roadmap on private sector engagement in VET system, in each level (relevant ministry, responsible institutions, provider).

Tasks

Deadline

A detailed work plan and methodology for the assignment: The contractor is expected to deliver a detailed plan within two weeks of the contracting and discussions with UNDP; Agree on the specific objectives and on the methodology to be used; Propose the criteria for indicators for the benchmarking model and agree with the SD4E team on the final research instrument;

end of April 2019

Conduct the 1st field visit to Tirana, Albania to meet the key stakeholders in VET, with the purpose of:

a)    Discussing key elements of the outcome evaluation, gather more information on the ground and get further clarity on the focus of the study;

b)    Analyze the local/regional stakeholder cooperation in VET and analyze the roadmap hypothesis from a local/regional point of view.

c)    Conduct meetings with the key stakeholders of the VET system in Albania at the national and provider level. (Ministry of Finance and Economy, Ministry of Education, NAVETQ, selected VET providers, private sector etc.)

10th of May 2019

Prepare the outcome evaluation report of the VET system in Albania, comparing the results of it with two other EU countries and one country in the Western Balkans. For each function, propose recommendations at the policy development and implementation level, which will make the VET system closer to the needs of the private sector.

15th of June

Conduct the 2nd field visit in Tirana, Albania to present and discuss the outcome evaluation report and the recommendations for each institution. Conduct meetings with selected private sector representatives (business associations, companies) to discuss the private sector engagement in the VET system.

30th of June

Elaborate a roadmap on systemic private Sector participation and contribution in VET system at the ministry, managing institution and school level, based on the VET system model in Albania.

30th of July 2019

Consolidate all the written and discussed comments, address them in a final document and submit the outcome evaluation report and the roadmap for private sector engagement to UNDP. Present the findings in the conference organised in Tirana, Albania.

10th of September 2019


Competencies

 

CORPORATE COMPETENCIES:

  • Demonstrates integrity by modelling 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.

CORE COMPETENCIES:

  • Communication - Facilitate and encourage open communication and strive for effective communication.
  • Planning & Organizing – Develops clear goals in line with agreed strategies, identifies priorities, foresees risks and makes allowances accordingly.
  • Organizational Awareness - Demonstrate corporate knowledge and sound judgment.
  • Teamwork - Demonstrate ability to work in a multicultural, multi-ethnic environment and to maintain effective working relations with people of different national and cultural backgrounds.
  • Accountability – Takes ownership of all responsibilities and delivers outputs in accordance with agreed time, cost and quality standards.

Functional Competencies:

  • Knowledge and expertise of data collection techniques and tools, and familiarity with the VET system;
  • Strong communication skills (written, spoken, composing, presentation);
  • Substantive knowledge of business administration and management;
  • Prior experience in setting and evaluating benchmarking models for VET;
  • Political and cultural sensitivity and commitment to UNDP’s development objectives in the country.


Required Skills and Experience

Academic Qualifications

-       Post-graduate degree in international development, education, economics, social sciences or other relevant field is required;

Work Experience

-       Minimum 10 years of professional experience in the Vocational Education and Training system;

-       Possess significant experience in leading similar assignments for large international donor funded projects in the areas of employment and vocational education and training

-       A good understanding of the VET system in the Albanian / regional context would be highly desirable

Language

-       Full working knowledge of English is essential. Knowledge of Albanian language is desired.

Evaluation Procedure

UNDP applies a fair and transparent selection process that would consider both the technical qualification of Individual Consultants as well as their financial proposals. The contract will be awarded to the candidate whose offer:

  • Is deemed technically responsive / compliant / acceptable (only technically responsive applications / candidates will be considered for the financial evaluation)
  • And has obtained the highest combined technical and financial scores.

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

Criteria A: Post-graduate degree in international development, education, economics, social sciences or other relevant field – max 10 points

Criteria B:  Minimum 10 years of professional experience in the Vocational Education and Training system – max 10 points

Criteria C: Possess significant experience in leading similar assignments for large international donor funded projects in the areas of employment and vocational education and training – max 20 points

Criteria D:  A good understanding of the VET system in the Albanian / regional context; Full working knowledge of English is essential. Knowledge of Albanian language is desired – max 10 points

Criteria E: Technical proposal – max 20 points

Financial Criteria - 30% of total evaluation – max 30 points

Application Procedure

Interested applicants are advised to carefully study all sections of this ToRs and ensure that they meet the general requirements as well as specific qualifications described. Incomplete applications will not be considered. Please make sure you have provided all requested materials.

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.
  • Letter to UNDP Confirming Interest and Availability-please fill in the attached form...http://www.un.org.al/doc/PSU_%20Individual%20Contract_Letter%20to%20UNDP.docx
  • Latest personal CV, including past experience from similar projects or completed and signed UN Personal History Form (P11) for Service Contracts (SC) and Individual Contracts (IC) – Blank form Download here.
  • Financial Proposal in USD 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. 
  • Copy of Diplomas and copy of Passport.

PLEASE NOTE THAT INCOMPLETE APPLICATIONS WILL NOT BE CONSIDERED FOR FURTHER EVALUATION 

How to Submit the Application:

To submit your application online, please follow the steps below:

  • Merge your CV or P11, Financial Proposal Letter to UNDP Confirming Interest and Availability and cover letter into a single file. The system does not allow for more than one attachment to be uploaded;
  • Click on the Job Title (job vacancy announcement);
  • Click “Apply Now” button, fill in necessary information on the first page, and then click “Submit Application;”
  • Upload your application/single file as indicated above with the merged documents (underlined above);
  • You will receive an automatic response to your email confirming receipt of your application by the system.

Due to a 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 erecruit.helpdesk@undp.org.

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