Individual Consultant - Policy Expert on Urban Resilience through Local Economic development

Location : Harare, ZIMBABWE
Application Deadline :22-Oct-19 (Midnight New York, USA)
Additional Category :Management
Type of Contract :Individual Contract
Post Level :National Consultant
Languages Required :
Starting Date :
(date when the selected candidate is expected to start)
Duration of Initial Contract :Two months
Expected Duration of Assignment :Two months


UNDP and UNICEF, together with the Ministry of Local Government, Public Works and National Housing, initiated an innovative programme called “Partnership for Building Urban Resilience in Zimbabwe” in 2018. The overall goal of the programme is to improve urban resilience and strengthen the provision of basic social services and Local Economic Development (LED) targeting unemployed youths, women, and vulnerable groups in urban and peri-urban areas. The Programme is piloted in a few selected local authorities, targeting Gwanda, Chipinge and Harare (Glenview and Budiriro). It focuses on evidence generation and knowledge building as well as setting up a model for sustainable WASH and LED interventions. This is a joint initiative of UNDP, UNICEF and Local Government that builds on the experiences of UNICEF from the Small Towns WASH programme and UNDP’s Zimbabwe Resilience Building Fund (ZRBF) and the Strengthening Local Government Service Delivery Capacity project.

The Programme approach recognizes the synergistic relationship between WASH, LED and Basic Social Services Sectors. The initial programme focuses on two outcome areas:

  1. Improvement in the urban environment tested on practical evidence on access to basic public services, employment, livelihoods opportunities for youth and women in unserved/ underserved urban and peri-urban areas; 
  2. Evidence based framework and strategies for building urban resilience developed.

At the moment, the Programme is in the pilot stage of knowledge and evidence generation, which in its turn will inform broader long-term programming for urban areas of Zimbabwe. In particular, the nation-wide study was initiated to understand drivers of urban resilience building and to identify the most critical gaps to address through interventions; WASH-focused social enterprises are being piloted in high-density pilot areas; as well urban by-laws are being reviewed to create a more enabling environment for local economic development. 

There is a strong need identified from benefitting urban local authorities to advance their local economic development strategies, especially in such areas as youth and women empowerment through employment and entrepreneurship, and sustainable energy solutions to address WASH, health and livelihoods challenges arising from limited energy access due to power outages.

Problem Statement
Zimbabwe has witnessed contraction of the formal sector and its regression into the now existent informal sector which accounts for a large percentage of the country’s employment and is characterized by low productivity and underemployment. Poverty continues to be perpetuated by a shortage of decent jobs and sustainable livelihood options. These challenges have a negative effect on the urban population, especially the youth, women and vulnerable groups. Underinvestment in infrastructure maintenance in the face of increased rural to urban migration trends has compounded the peri-urban poverty challenge. Consequently, these have resulted in significant infrastructure deficits especially for basic services: water and sanitation, transport, education, health services and electricity. Urban areas in the country are increasingly affected by climate shocks, stresses and hazards, such as extreme rainfall and droughts leading to water stress, flooding and natural disasters. Furthermore, the risks of disasters endanger the livelihoods of women and girls more than those of men because of the greater social and economic inequalities women face. The youth, in light of very limited employment opportunities, is particularly vulnerable and can be attracted to commit violent acts or engage in illegal activities. 

These urban challenges are further exacerbated by acute power shortages. The latter significantly cripple medium, small and micro enterprises, as well as have a negative effect on individual households. The power cuts have cost manufacturers more than $200 million in lost production since June, according to the Confederation of Zimbabwe Industries and Zimbabwe National Chamber of Commerce.
Lack of access to sustainable energy also results in many households resorting to burning fossil fuels (firewood) in their houses, resulting in fire and health hazards, carbon emissions, as well barriers to women empowerment (as it is mainly females who are responsible for wood collection, which causes them missing out on educational or learning opportunities). Lack of street lights also limits livelihoods options, as well as negatively impacts road safety.

Creating decent and productive livelihoods, employment and job opportunities, especially for the country’s relatively well-educated youth is crucial if Zimbabwe is to achieve a demographic dividend for development in the next generation and reduce poverty. Inculcating a skills-based entrepreneurship culture, promoting a local economic development perspective (LED) which is linked to a strong SMEs enabling environment, thus ensuring income security, remains the key to poverty reduction and social cohesion in the cities. Investment in entrepreneurship and private sector development coupled with sustainable energy solutions (i.e. solar, bio-gas, cooking stoves) will address the short-term recovery and foster the transition to longer-term local economic development and inclusive growth. In order to address urban energy challenges, alternative energy solutions are essential for sustainable livelihoods of the highly vulnerable and poor urban and peri-urban populations, while at the same time addressing power load-shedding challenges in the country.

This Consultancy is expected to strengthen policy dialogue component of the Programme through  LED (local economic development) and related aspects, such as employment generation, identification of possible immediate interventions towards sustainable energy solutions for resilient cities agenda. The consultant shall support urban local authorities to develop LED strategies/plan and design appropriate products and interventions. Through policy dialogues and LED approach, the consultancy is envisaged to help the Programme to respond to current acute energy crisis that substantially exacerbates the livelihoods of urban dwellers and puts additional pressure on WASH infrastructure. 

The consultancy will respond to the Outcome 1 of the AWP “Immediate improvements in urban environment to build practical evidence – Access to basic public services, employment, livelihoods opportunities for youth in unserved and underserved urban areas improved”, in particular, Activity 1.1.2.: “Provide institutional capacity support to Local Authorities for effective basic service delivery: Basic Services for WASH-led Local Economic development” and Activity 1.3.1.: “Conduct policy dialogues for Public, Private and CSOs partnership to address immediate needs for water and sanitation service delivery and WASH infrastructure to promote enterprise development in the selected local urban and peri-urban areas”.

The consultant shall help the Urban Resilience Programme to identify gaps and further sustainable solutions for local economic development through identification and development of LED strategies, incorporating sustainable energy solutions for urban areas and pathways for scaling up programme interventions in these areas. S/he will help to identify synergies with governmental counterparts and private sector in the areas of LED and support scaling up of the Urban Resilience programme. Based on these findings and feedback from governmental counterparts, S/he will lead formulation the broader Urban Resilience programme (with LED and green jobs focus).

Duties and Responsibilities

The Consultant is expected to undertake the following duties:

  • Facilitate engagements with policy decision makers and provide support in conducting policy dialogues with government stakeholders on LED and sustainable energy solution for urban resilience;
  • Facilitate engagements/ identify linkages with private sector (especially in green energy sector) to foster urban resilience agenda through youth entrepreneurship development, green jobs and LED;
  • Support development of strategies on public-private and CSOs partnerships on LED, youth employment around LED, youth entrepreneurship development and green solutions; 
  • Conduct rapid assessment to identify gaps and opportunities and develop a strategy to address the LED primarily through sustainable energy solutions and to create green jobs and employment for women and youth in urban  and peri -urban areas of Zimbabwe (with linkages to LED, green jobs, entrepreneurship, and strengthened market linkages, energy solutions for Urban WASH);  the strategy should utilize findings from ongoing urban resilience study and strategy and feedback obtained through policy dialogues with government counterparts and private sector actors.

Expected outputs

  • Stakeholder mapping and proper consultations with the stakeholders (policy makers, senior private sectors, UN Agencies, and other stakeholders) are expected from this assignment; 
  • Rapid assessment of gaps and practical strategy for urban local authorities (Harare, Gwanda, Chipinge) to improve immediate situation around LED through youth employment with focusing on energy solutions in WASH sector (e.g. Solar for jobs, bio-gas, improved cooking stoves, etc.) in partnership with appropriate private sector players 
  • Strategy and concept notes on LED, youth entrepreneurship development, with strong focus towards green solutions and women empowerment through green solutions;
  • Best practices and innovations are identified and incorporated in the strategy and programme document .


  • Inception report, which will be in a format of a schedule of planned policy engagements for sensitization of urban resilience programme, as well as stakeholder mapping by 10 November 2019; 
  • Rapid assessment of gaps and practical strategy for urban local authorities on LED polices, plan, and strategy, by 30 November 2019; 
  • Strategy and concept notes on LED, youth entrepreneurship development, with strong focus towards green solutions and women empowerment, by 15 December 2019;
  • Final report on policy dialogues conducted and feedback obtained from various stakeholder, by 20 December 2019.


High Level of Professionalism:

  • Strong analytical, quantitative and problem-solving skills;
  • Ability to provide clear messages on complex information;
  • Ability to seek and synthesize information from a variety of sources and draw solid conclusion based on in depth analysis;
  • Accuracy and attention to detail;
  • Good communication skills, including the ability to write high quality reports, conduct studies and to articulate ideas in a clear and concise style;
  • Excellent interpersonal skills, teamwork and adept at working with people of diverse cultural and social backgrounds;
  • An understanding of and ability to abide by the core values of the United Nations.

Strong Planning & Organizing Capacity:

  • Organizes and accurately completes multiple tasks by establishing priorities while taking into consideration special assignments, frequent interruptions, deadlines, available resources and multiple reporting relationships;
  • Plans, coordinates and organizes workload while remaining aware of changing priorities and competing deadlines;
  • Demonstrates ability to quickly shift from one task to another to meet multiple support needs.

Demonstratable Teamwork:

  • Works collaboratively with partners to achieve organizational goals;
  • Solicits input by genuinely valuing others’ ideas and expertise;
  • Facilitates the development of individual and multi-cultural/team competencies;
  • Ability to provide substantive training and mentoring, and manage teams.

Required Skills and Experience


  • At least a master’s degree in: political and /or social science, economics, management. PhD will be an added advantage.


  • Project/Programme Management experience. Current/previous PRINCE2® Foundation Certification is required; PRINCE2® Practitioner Certification is an asset; MSP® or P3O® Foundation Certification is an asset;
  • Proven experience in research and analytical skills;
  • Proven experience in quantitative and qualitative research skills;
  • Strong analytical writing skills;
  • Editing skills an advantage;
  • Familiarity with Urban Resilience and Policy contexts; 
  • Familiarity with resilience concept;
  • At least 10 years proven experience in the spheres of local economic development, market linkages development, green jobs, entrepreneurship, employment and governance;
  • In-depth knowledge of Zimbabwean economic and political context;
  • Understanding of policy processes and knowledge of key governmental stakeholders in relation to urban resilience, green jobs, and LED.


  • Fluency in written and spoken English.

Application Proceedure:

Applicants are requested to upload copies of:

  • Latest CV highlighting the relevant experience;
  • Updated P11 Form template of which can be downloaded from this website -
  • A detailed technical proposal on undertaking the tasks and evidence of previous work;

Please group all your documents (CV, P11, Technical Proposal and certificates) into one (1) single PDF document as the system only allows to upload maximum one document. Incomplete applications will not be given consideration. Applicants must reply to the mandatory questions asked by the system when submitting the application. Please note that only applicants who are short-listed will be contacted.

Evaluation criteria:

The Consultants will be evaluated based on qualifications and the years of experience, as outlined in the qualifications/requirements section of the ToR.  In addition, the Consultant will also be evaluated on the following methodology:
Technical Criteria weight: 70%;
Financial Criteria weight: 30%;
The award of the contract shall be made to the 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 and financial criteria specific to the Terms of Reference.

UNDP is committed to gender equality in its mandate and its staff, and equal opportunities for people with disabilities. Well qualified candidates, particularly women and people with disabilities are especially encouraged to apply.UNDP has zero tolerance on bullying, harassment and sexual exploitation and abuse.

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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