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National Consultant for the Midterm Review of the Low Carbon Urban Transport Project
|Location :||Manila, PHILIPPINES|
|Application Deadline :||17-Sep-20 (Midnight New York, USA)|
|Additional Category :||Climate & Disaster Resilience|
|Type of Contract :||Individual Contract|
|Post Level :||National Consultant|
|Languages Required :||English|
|Expected Duration of Assignment :||40 working days spread over 5 months|
This is the Terms of Reference (ToR) for -the Midterm Review (MTR) of the full-sized UNDP-supported GEF-financed project titled Promotion of Low Carbon Urban Transport Systems in the Philippines (PIMS# 5304) implemented through the Department of Transportation (DoTr), which is to be undertaken in 2020. The project started on 16 November 2017 and is in its fourth year of implementation. This ToR sets out the expectations for this MTR. The MTR process must follow the guidance outlined in the document Guidance For Conducting Midterm Reviews of UNDP-Supported, GEF-Financed Projects.
PROJECT BACKGROUND INFORMATION
The project was designed to create an enabling environment for the commercialization of low carbon urban transport systems (e.g., electric and hybrid vehicles) in the Philippines. The project aims to do this through 1) effective enforcement of policies and support provided for the promotion of low carbon modes of transport; 2) adopting and implementing low carbon transport plans and/or programs in major cities; 3) increasing private sector participation in the widespread deployment and commercialization of low carbon transport systems; and 4) increasing private sector investment in low carbon transport systems. The project is being implemented through the Department of Transportation under a National Implementation Modality.
The MTR will assess progress towards the achievement of the project objectives and outcomes as specified in the Project Document, and assess early signs of project success or failure with the goal of identifying the necessary changes to be made in order to set the project on-track to achieve its intended results. The MTR will also review the project’s strategy and its risks to sustainability.
The findings shall be acted upon by UNDP, DoTr, and other government agencies and stakeholders. The findings and any other relevant lessons and recommendations is expected to contribute to the internal programming of UNDP and to existing and emerging national policy considerations, including but not limited to the enhancement and eventual implementation of the Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) and emerging considerations for greening the recovery of the Philippines from COVID-19.
MTR APPROACH & METHODOLOGY
The MTR report must provide evidence-based information that is credible, reliable and useful.
The MTR team will review all relevant sources of information including documents prepared during the preparation phase (i.e. PIF, UNDP Initiation Plan, UNDP Social and Environmental Screening Procedure/SESP), the Project Document, project reports including annual PIRs, project budget revisions, national strategic and legal documents, and any other materials that the team considers useful for this evidence-based review. The MTR team will review the baseline GEF focal area Core Indicators/Tracking Tools submitted to the GEF at CEO endorsement, and the midterm GEF focal area Core Indicators/Tracking Tools that must be completed before the data collection begins.
The MTR team is expected to follow a collaborative and participatory approach ensuring close engagement with the Project Team, government counterparts (the GEF Operational Focal Point), the UNDP Country Office(s), the Nature, Climate and Energy (NCE) Regional Technical Advisor, direct beneficiaries, and other key stakeholders.
Engagement of stakeholders is vital to a successful MTR. Stakeholder involvement should include interviews with stakeholders who have project responsibilities, including but not limited to the Project Management Unit, key officials from the Department of Transportation, programme staff from UNDP, executing agencies, senior officials and task team/ component leaders, key experts and consultants in the subject area, Project Board, project stakeholders, academia, local government and CSOs, etc. Given travel restrictions and the general situation under the pandemic, travels are discouraged and data collection methods should be replaced by appropriate means to do it remotely. The UNDP Independent Evaluation Office (IEO) has released a decentralized evaluation guidance note highlighting the challenges confronting evaluations at this time and potential ways to overcome them, which can be considered for this MTR.
The specific design and methodology for the MTR should emerge from consultations between the MTR team and the above-mentioned parties regarding what is appropriate and feasible for meeting the MTR purpose and objectives and answering the evaluation questions, given limitations of budget, time and data. The MTR team must use gender-responsive methodologies and tools and ensure that gender equality and women’s empowerment, as well as other cross-cutting issues and SDGs are incorporated into the MTR report.
The final methodological approach including interview scheduling, respondents, and data sources, among others, to be used in the MTR must be clearly outlined in the Inception Report and be fully discussed and agreed between UNDP, stakeholders, and the MTR team.
The final MTR report must describe the full MTR approach taken and the rationale for the approach making explicit the underlying assumptions, challenges, strengths and weaknesses about the methods and approach of the review.
 For ideas on innovative and participatory Monitoring and Evaluation strategies and techniques, see UNDP Discussion Paper: Innovations in Monitoring & Evaluating Results, 05 Nov 2013.
The total duration of the MTR will be approximately 40 working days over a time period of 9 weeks and shall not exceed five months from when the consultant(s) are hired. Assuming a start date of 15 September 2020 (1 October 2020), the tentative MTR timeframe is as follows:
7. MTR ARRANGEMENTS
The principal responsibility for managing this MTR resides with the Commissioning Unit, which is the UNDP Philippines Country Office. The MTR shall be managed by the M&E Focal of the Country Office together with the Climate Action Programme Team.
An Evaluation Reference Group (ERG) shall be formed composed of principal representatives from project stakeholders (government partners, donor, representatives from the Project Board) that will perform an advisory role throughout the process, ensure that evaluation standards as provided by the United Nations Evaluation Group (UNEG) are adhered to, including safeguarding transparency and independence, advise on the relevance and appropriateness of questions, and support and provide input into the development of the management responses and key actions.
The Commissioning Unit will contract the consultants and ensure appropriate management of obligations for the MTR team and will provide an updated stakeholder list with contact details (phone and email). The Project Team will be responsible for liaising with the MTR team to provide all relevant documents, set up stakeholder interviews, and arrange other activities related to the MTR process.
8. TEAM COMPOSITION
A team of two independent consultants will conduct the MTR – one international consultant to function as review lead/coordinator (with experience and exposure to projects and evaluations in other regions globally) and one national consultant to function as technical expert.
The consultants cannot have participated in the project preparation, formulation, and/or implementation (including the writing of the Project Document) and should not have a conflict of interest with project’s related activities.
The MTR team will be held to the highest ethical standards and is required to sign a code of conduct upon acceptance of the assignment. This MTR will be conducted in accordance with the principles outlined in the UNEG ‘Ethical Guidelines for Evaluation’. The MTR team must safeguard the rights and confidentiality of information providers, interviewees and stakeholders through measures to ensure compliance with legal and other relevant codes governing collection of data and reporting on data. The MTR team must also ensure security of collected information before and after the MTR and protocols to ensure anonymity and confidentiality of sources of information where that is expected. The information, knowledge and data gathered in the MTR process must also be solely used for the MTR and not for other uses without the express authorization of UNDP and partners.
Criteria for issuing the final payment of 40%:
In line with the UNDP’s financial regulations, when determined by the Country Office and/or the consultant that a deliverable or service cannot be satisfactorily completed due to the impact of COVID- 19 and limitations to the evaluation, that deliverable or service will not be paid.
Due to the current COVID-19 situation and its implications, a partial payment may be considered if the consultant invested time towards the deliverable but was unable to complete to circumstances beyond his/her control.
 The Commissioning Unit is obligated to issue payments to the MTR team as soon as the terms under the ToR are fulfilled. If there is an ongoing discussion regarding the quality and completeness of the final deliverables that cannot be resolved between the Commissioning Unit and the MTR team, the Regional M&E Advisor and Vertical Fund Directorate will be consulted. If needed, the Commissioning Unit’s senior management, Procurement Services Unit and Legal Support Office will be notified as well so that a decision can be made about whether or not to withhold payment of any amounts that may be due to the evaluator(s), suspend or terminate the contract and/or remove the individual contractor from any applicable rosters. See the UNDP Individual Contract Policy for further details:
Duties and Responsibilities
DETAILED SCOPE OF THE MTR
The MTR team will assess the following four categories of project progress. See the Guidance For Conducting Midterm Reviews of UNDP-Supported, GEF-Financed Projects for extended descriptions.
i. Project Strategy
Progress Towards Results
Progress Towards Outcomes Analysis:
Table. Progress Towards Results Matrix (Achievement of outcomes against End-of-project Targets)
Indicator Assessment Key
In addition to the progress towards outcomes analysis:
Project Implementation and Adaptive Management
Finance and co-finance:
Project-level Monitoring and Evaluation Systems:
Social and Environmental Standards (Safeguards)
A given project should be assessed against the version of UNDP’s safeguards policy that was in effect at the time of the project’s approval.
 Risks are to be labeled with both the UNDP SES Principles and Standards, and the GEF’s “types of risks and potential impacts”: Climate Change and Disaster; Disadvantaged or Vulnerable Individuals or Groups; Disability Inclusion; Adverse Gender-Related impact, including Gender-based Violence and Sexual Exploitation; Biodiversity Conservation and the Sustainable Management of Living Natural Resources; Restrictions on Land Use and Involuntary Resettlement; Indigenous Peoples; Cultural Heritage; Resource Efficiency and Pollution Prevention; Labor and Working Conditions; Community Health, Safety and Security.
Communications & Knowledge Management:
Financial risks to sustainability:
Socio-economic risks to sustainability:
Institutional Framework and Governance risks to sustainability:
Environmental risks to sustainability:
Following the above assessment’s outline (i.e. Project Strategy, Progress Towards Results, Project Implementation & Adaptive Management, and Sustainability), the MTR should also be able to answer the following evaluative questions:
Progress Towards Results
 These evaluative questions are also conveniently aligned with the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development – Development Assistance Committee (OECD-DAC) criteria (Relevance, Effectiveness, Efficiency, and Sustainability). Note that the questions are not exhaustive and may change. The set of evaluation questions shall be finalized through the inception report.
Project Implementation & Adaptive Management
Conclusions & Recommendations
The MTR team will include a section in the MTR report for evidence-based conclusions, in light of the findings.
Additionally, the MTR consultant/team is expected to make recommendations to the Project Team. Recommendations should be succinct suggestions for critical intervention that are specific, measurable, achievable, and relevant. A recommendation table should be put in the report’s executive summary. See the Guidance For Conducting Midterm Reviews of UNDP-Supported, GEF-Financed Projects for guidance on a recommendation table.
The MTR team should make no more than 15 recommendations in total.
The MTR team will include its ratings of the project’s results and brief descriptions of the associated achievements in an MTR Ratings & Achievement Summary Table in the Executive Summary of the MTR report. See Annex E for rating scales. No rating on Project Strategy and no overall project rating is required.
MIDTERM REVIEW DELIVERABLES
*The final MTR report must be in English. If applicable, the Commissioning Unit may choose to arrange for a translation of the report into a language more widely shared by national stakeholders.
Functional and technical competencies
Required Skills and Experience
Candidates will be evaluated based on the Combined Rating methodology:
For the evaluation of the Technical Proposal, the selection of the successful consultant must be based on the following qualifications (with the appropriate obtainable points):
Applicants who will only receive 70 points from the assessment of the CV will be qualified for the assessment of the Financial Proposal.
Recommended Presentation of Offer
Interested applicants must submit the following documents/information to demonstrate their qualifications. Please group them into one (1) single PDF document as the application only allows to upload maximum one document.
Interested applicants to note that personal Medical/health insurance (to be purchased by the individual at his/her own expense) is mandatory for the issuance of contracts. Upon award of the contract, the consultant must be ready to submit proof of insurance valid during the contract duration.
The following templates / Annexes and IC General Terms & Conditions can be downloaded from http://gofile.me/6xdJm/bE9TCw8fU:
In view of the volume of applications, UNDP receives, only shortlisted offerors will be notified.
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.