Consultant - National Geospatial Specialist - Sri Lankans only.

Location : Colombo with travel to field sites as necessary, SRI LANKA
Application Deadline :07-Aug-20 (Midnight New York, USA)
Type of Contract :Individual Contract
Post Level :National Consultant
Languages Required :
Duration of Initial Contract :Maximum 40 days within 9 months


UNDP is the leadng United Nations Organization fighting to end the injustice of poverty, inequality and climate change.  Working with our broad network of experts and partners in 170 countries, we help nations to build integrated lasting solutions for people and planet.  UNDP Sri Lanka has been working as the key developent partner of choice since 1967 to achieve sustainable human development on economic, social and environmental fronts.

UNDP Sri Lanka has a portfolio of projects that focus on environmental sustainability and climate resilience. These projects support the government to implement climate smart solutions in critical sectors, mainstream biodiversity into landscape management approaches and production sectors and produce quality and time sensitive reports to global environmental treaties/ conventions.


In this backdrop, Government of Sri Lanka, with the assistance of UNDP, has secured funding from the Global Environment Facility (GEF) for the Project “Partnerships and Innovative Financing to Mainstream Biodiversity and Sustainable Land Management in the Wet and Intermediate Climatic Zones”.  The objective of the project is to conserve globally significant biodiversity by improving land management practices in tea and rubber production areas in the Wet and Intermediate Climatic Zones through innovative Private-Public-Community Partnerships. As per the project’s theory of change, this objective will be achieved through three components:


  • Component 1: Conservation and Restoration of High Conservation Value Forests (HCVFs) in the Wet and Intermediate Climatic Zones
  • Component 2: Innovative Public-Private-Community Partnerships for Biodiversity Conservation and Sustainable Land Management in Plantation Sector
  • Component 3: Knowledge Management, Gender Mainstreaming, Learning, and Monitoring and Evaluation.


To facilitate the Project and its objectives, UNDP Sri Lanka has obtained a project preparation grant (PPG) from the GEF to develop a full project document with supporting documentation for submission to the GEF for Chief Executive Officer’s endorsement with the ultimate objective of developing the project concept into a full project. UNDP Sri Lanka will be assembling a Project Development Team comprising of a highly competent team of experts from various disciplines, including a highly skilled international consultant who will head the team. The National Geospatial Specialist will work alongside this team, and support the PPG Team Lead in the collection of GIS data on plantation, land-use and forestry; including providing spatial analysis of potential riparian and forest corridors that connect the fragmented forests to the wider PA network.


The National Geospatial Specialist will report to the Programme Quality & Design Analyst of the Climate and Environment Team. The Specialist will obtain the overall technical guidance from the PPG Team Lead and work in close collaboration with the Lead National Consultant for Project Development. The intended IC should support the project formulation team to support the GIS related needs arising during the project formulation as required.



The primary scope of the consultancy is the collection of GIS data on plantation, land-use and forestry; including providing spatial analysis of potential riparian and forest corridors that connect the fragmented forests to wider PA network. The consultancy will also include providing inputs to the project document and the validation workshop.


Duties and Responsibilities

1)  Preparatory Technical Studies and Reviews (Component A): Prepare inputs and support the required analyses/studies, as agreed with the PPG Team Leader, including:

  1. Obtain and conduct a desk review of existing land use and GIS maps done by the NBRO, the Forest Department, Land Use Policy Planning Department, the Survey Department, Plantations and other related sources;
  2. Liaise with national, and provincial governments, and district authorities to source spatial data for land use, administrative, forests and other relevant maps;
  3. Map the specific location of the HCVFs and potential options for ensuring connectivity with riparian habitats, other natural forest within the estate sector and adjoining forest reserves and protected areas to provide a better understanding of their spatial distribution and options for connectivity;
  4. Overlay different layers of information such as administrative districts, land use, plantation extents, marginal lands under plantations, forest cover under plantations, protected areas, settlements, target groups, etc. using GIS (please see Component A of the PPG IP for more details);
  5. Generate landscape maps for the target project sites as baseline and inputs to the design of project interventions;
  6. Consult with the International Team Leader, Lead National Consultant for Project Development and National Specialist on Landscape management/ ecologist on maps required for the project document and its annexes;
  7. Collect required data and develop a data base for each pilot site to provide current ecological and social conditions and land-use patterns for continued monitoring of key parameters; and
  8. Provide information to support the documentation of key land use, biological and other parameters, as required in the pilot project areas.


2)   Formulation of the Project Document (Component B), provide necessary inputs and support the development of final PPG deliverables, as agreed with the PPG Team Leader.


3)  Validation Workshop (Component C):

  1. Contribute to the validation workshop; and
  2. Support all necessary revisions that arise during the workshop, as appropriate.


The above deliverables are subject to adjustments depending upon partner needs and emerging priorities. Any changes will be discussed and agreed to, with the consultant. Consultant’s duty station during the contract will be Colombo (home based) with travel to outstations as required.


Expected Outputs/Deliverables

The following results are expected from the work of the consultant:

  1.  GIS analysis reports and land use maps for each project site looking at threats and opportunities arising from the current land use patterns and future climate change threats/10 days/ 31st August 2020;
  2. Landscape and pilot site maps with coordinates/10 days/ 30th September 2020;
  3. Information to support the documentation of key land use, biological and other parameters, as required in the pilot project areas/10 days/ 31st October 2020;
  4. Appropriate inputs to the final UNDP-GEF project document based on guidance from the PPG Team Leader/ 05 days/ Until April 2021;
  5. Any other emerging priorities which may be adjusted from the days above/05 days/ Until 30th April 2021.



A maximum of 40 days of work within a 9-month period is estimated for the above described deliverables/tasks. The envisaged time frame of the consultancy is August 2020 – April 2021.


The prospective consultant should, as a minimum, have the following competencies and qualifications;



  • Proven ability to undertake development work in programme/ project management
  • Solid experience in working on the national or international level in setting up and maintaining geospatial information management systems
  • Ability to engage effectively with other implementing agencies supporting the respective UN agencies, development partners, the private sector, etc.
  • Good understanding of the governance structure and systems in Sri Lanka, including the current political economy context.
  • Proven analytical skills: ability to conduct independent research and analysis, identify issues, and recommend appropriate solutions.



  • Maturity and confidence in dealing with senior members of national and private sector institutions,
  • Displays cultural, gender, religion, race, nationality and age sensitivity and adaptability.
  • Excellent written communication skills, with analytic capacity and ability to synthesize relevant collected data and findings for the preparation of quality analysis for the development of the report.
  • Excellent coordination skills and result oriented collaboration with personnel with different subject expertise.
  • Excellent communication (both oral and written) and partnership building skills with multi-dimension partners.



  • Promotes the vision, mission, and strategic goals of UNDP.
  • Builds strong relationships with clients, focuses on impact and result for the client and responds positively to feedback.
  • Good team player who has ability to maintain good relationships.

Required Skills and Experience


  • Masters’ Degree in GIS, Cartography or related field.   



  • Minimum of 3 years progressive experience in GIS, remote sensing, land use mapping or related field Previous experience in development work in programme/ project management


Languages/ Other

  • Excellent English language skills, working knowledge in Sinhala/ Tamil.





The application should contain:

  • Cover letter explaining why you are the most suitable candidate for the advertised position and a brief methodology on how you will approach and conduct the work.
  • Updated CV to include qualifications/competencies and relevant experience in similar projects and contact details of 3 professional referees who can certify your competencies, professionalism, quality of writing, presentation and overall suitability to this TOR
  • Individual consultants will be evaluated based on a combination of factors including cover letter, the credentials on offer and brief interview (optional) and the offer which gives the best value for money for the UNDP.
  • Please send the Financial Proposal separately to the following e-mail address:  stating the vacancy number/position  in the subject line.



All Inclusive Lump Sum Fee: LKR (_______________________________________)


All Inclusive Daily Fee: LKR (_____________________________________)

Amount in words:



Note: Payments will be based on invoices on achievement of agreed milestones i.e. upon delivery of the services specified in the TOR and certification of acceptance by the UNDP. The applicant must factor in all possible costs in his/her “All Inclusive Lump Sum Fee” including his/her consultancy and professional fee, travel (economy class flights is required to and from the Duty Station) honorarium, board and lodging, and any other foreseeable costs in this exercise. No costs other than what has been indicated in the financial proposal will be paid or reimbursed to the consultant. UNDP will only pay for any unplanned travel outside of this TOR and Duty Station on actual basis and on submission of original bills/invoices and on prior agreement with UNDP officials. Daily per diem and costs for accommodation/meals/incidental expenses for such travel shall not exceed established local UNDP DSA rates.


For an Individual Contractor who is 65 years of age or older, and on an assignment requiring travel, be it for the purpose of arriving at the duty station or as an integral duty required travel under the TOR, a full medical examination and statement of fitness to work must be provided.  Such medical examination costs must be factored into the financial proposal above. Medical examination is not a requirement for individuals on RLA contracts. 




Payments will be based on the completion of deliverables and submission of written reports specifying the achievement of the deliverables outlined above. The payments will be verified by the Lead National Consultant for Project Development.



  1. 31st August 2020 – 25% of the total payment on submitting the Deliverable 1
  2. 30th September 2020 - 25% of the total payment on submitting the Deliverable 2
  3. 31st October 2020 - 25% of the total payment on submitting the Deliverable 3
  4. 30th April 2021 – the remaining 25% of the total payment on submitting the Deliverable 4 & 5



UNDP is committed to achieving diversity within its workplace, and encourages all qualified applicants, irrespective of gender, nationality, disabilities, sexual orientation, culture, religious and ethnic backgrounds to apply. All applications will be treated in 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.

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