National Consultant to conduct a diagnostic study on the Informal Sector in Namibia

Location : Windhoek, but expected to travel to all 14 Regions, NAMIBIA
Application Deadline :28-Sep-20 (Midnight New York, USA)
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 :90 Days
Expected Duration of Assignment :90 Days

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.


The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) is the United Nations (UN) global development network, advocating for change and connecting countries to knowledge, experience and resources to help people build better lives. UNDP has a presence in nearly 170 countries and territories, working with governments and people on their own solutions to global and national development challenges. As countries develop local capacity, they draw on the people of UNDP and our wide range of partners that can bring about results.

The 2030 Agenda for sustainable development demands a UN development system that is agile, cohesive and responsive to a country’s priorities and people’s needs. It requires rights-based programming for the 2030 Agenda that is underpinned by robust national analyses, a renewed push for collective action and partnerships, and a laser-like focus on helping countries achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by leaving no one behind (LNOB). In line with this, UNDP programming focuses on the vulnerable and marginalized populations, especially those in the informal sector.

COVID-19 has exposed and intensified economic and social divides worldwide and Namibia is no different. When the lock down measures from level 1 (March 2020) were implemented, it resulted in economic consequences for informal sector actors, in the form of revenue lost/foregone. The informal sector is often left out of structural government support even though it contributes substantially to job creation, poverty alleviation and income generation. The informal sector in Sub Saharan African countries contributes about 55% of GDP and employs more than 50% of the labour force.[1] In Namibia it is estimated that the informal sector (+/-300 000 informal economy operators) accounts for approximately 12% of the GDP.[i]  The actors in this sector are at a great risk of losing incomes/employment and have little to no savings to rely on or no social protection mechanisms to assist them. The result is therefore not only a significant reduction in economic activity, but also a great reduction in household incomes and many more households pushed into poverty. For this reason, there is need to strengthen the sector’s ecosystem as it can assist in achieving aggregated enhanced human well-being. The UNDP Namibia proposes to carry out a diagnostic study of the informal sector in Namibia to help inform policy and programmatic design aimed at further supporting the sector.

This assignment further requires the design of a people centered and gender responsive approach, informed by international best practices in this area, to contribute towards the achievement of Outcome 1.1 of the 2019-2023 UNPAF in Namibia: The desired outcome is :“By 2023, institutions implement policies for inclusive development and poverty reduction for vulnerable groups.”





Duties and Responsibilities

The main purpose of the assignment is to conduct a diagnostic study to map the diversity of the existing Informal sector activities, the specific needs of operators in the sector and challenges as well as opportunities across the 14 regions. The secondary purpose is to evaluate the progress towards formalization. The outcome of this study is to propose policy recommendations, programmatic interventions, approaches and possible solutions towards a strengthened ecosystem of the informal sector.

 The scope of this study is to;

(i)     Undertake a comprehensive mapping exercise to clearly identify the size, composition and key characteristics of the informal sector by gender, age, and geographic location in Namibia.

(ii)   Map out the specific needs, challenges and opportunities of the informal sector in all 14 regions as part of the diagnostics to help inform policy and programmatic interventions in these regions, which could be helpful in designing policies and programmes to support their transition to  the formal sector.

(iii) Map out existing policy frameworks (and related measures) and informal sector structures and activities that are in place to support the sector; identify gaps in these frameworks and structures and recommend appropriate measures for addressing these gaps.

(iv)  Identify and map out key stakeholders supporting the informal sector in the different regions.

(v)    Identify social security mechanisms (both formal and informal) that Informal sector workers are using in all the 14 regions.

(vi)  Identify and map out existing laws and rules and regulations affecting the business environment and their specific impact on the informal sector.

(vii) Design a dashboard that will provide a continuous monitoring platform of data for the informal sector.

(viii) Obtain basic information on the nature of the informal economy in Namibia with particular reference to the following:

  •   Degrees of informality;
  •   Livelihood trends and status of employment in the informal economy in the 14 regions;
  •   Key risks/challenges faced by workers (disaggregated by sex, age, and location) in the informal economy and possible gender responsive mitigation measures that could be put in place to address them;
  •   Start-up capital, income and skills level pertaining to different types of businesses;

  • Perception of and access to formal social security mechanisms and financial services for workers in the informal economy

  • Present a profile informal economy workers and economic units considering also the gender and persons with disability perspective 

  • Present the informal economy;s contribution to employment, povverty alleviation, GDP growth andidentification of the areas or sectors they are engaged in. 



(i)     Document the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the sector and identify the possible interventions for recovery.

(ii)   Analyze the micro level determinants of informality and incentives for formalization such as the level of education, discrimination, poverty, voice and representation, access to credit, to services, digital resources, or to markets and provide appropriate measures that could strengthen ecosystem of the informal sector and the transition to the formal sector.

(iii) Provide sex disaggregated data to define how many women and men are engaged in the sector, and their activities and areas they are involved with.

(iv)  Provide well-structured policy options and recommendations and programmatic interventions aimed at supporting the viability of the sector and the transition of some of its members to the formal economy.










Organizational Competencies:

·        Demonstrates integrity by modeling 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.



·        Strong analytical, negotiation and communication skills, including ability to produce high quality practical advisory reports and knowledge products,

·        Professional and/or academic experience in one or more of the areas of the Development or knowledge management field.


Project and Resource Management:

·        Ability to produce high quality outputs in a timely manner while understanding and anticipating the evolving client needs.

·        Ability to focus on impact and results for the client, promoting and demonstrating an ethic of client service.

·        Ability to work independently, produce high quality outputs.

·        Sound judgment, strategic thinking and the ability to manage competing priorities.


Partnership building and teamwork:

·        Excellent negotiating and networking skills.

·        Demonstrated flexibility to excel in a multi-cultural environment.


Communications and Advocacy:

·        Strong ability to write clearly and convincingly, adapting style and content to different audiences and speak clearly and convincingly.

·        Strong presentation skills in meetings with the ability to adapt for different audiences.

·        Strong analytical, research and writing skills with demonstrated ability to think strategically.

·        Strong capacity to communicate clearly and quickly.

·        Strong inter-personal, negotiation and liaison skills.

Required Skills and Experience



·         A conceptual foundational qualification in Social Sciences, such as economic, development studies, public policy, and other related fields.

·         The Consultant must have a Master’s degree in any of the areas mentioned in the Social Sciences, with PhD being an added advantage.


·         A minimum of 5 years’ experience with a proven record in undertaking similar assignments;

·         Extensive knowledge and experience in conducting similar studies for organizations at national, regional or international levels;

·         Extensive experience in working with development organizations at national, regional and international levels;

·         Experience working in the field of Knowledge Management and/or organizational management highly desirable.

·         Knowledge of people-centered and design thinking methodology is desirable

·         Proven ability to interact at the highest governmental and inter-governmental levels and to provide high quality policy advice.

·         Familiarity with UN common procedures and tools, especially regarding needs assessments, pooled funds and joint programming

·         Work experience from a developing country, particularly in Africa highly desirable.

·         Experience in the use of computers and office software packages;

·         Excellent writing, research, analysis and presentation skills.


·         Fluency in English with excellent written and oral communication skills

Recommended Presentation of Offer;

  • Completed Letter of Confirmation of Interest and Availability using the template provided by UNDP;
  • Personal CV or a P11 Personal History form, 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;
  • Brief description of approach to work/technical proposal of why the individual considers him/herself as the most suitable for the assignment, and a proposed methodology on how they will approach and complete the assignment (max 1 page).

Financial proposal:

Financial Proposal that indicates the all-inclusive fixed total contract price, supported by a breakdown of costs, as per template provided (based on the number of working days mentioned ToR.


  • Please group all your documents into one (1) single PDF document as the system only allows uploading maximum one document.
  • Qualified women and members of minorities are encouraged to apply;
  • Incomplete applications will not be considered. Please make sure you have provided all requested materials.

Incomplete applications will be excluded from further consideration.

To view the full Terms of Reference (TOR) and download letter of confirmation of interest and P11 form, please access the UNDP Procurement Notice site on the below link:

Application process:

Applicants are requested to submit price offers indicating the total cost of the assignment (including daily fees, per diem and travel costs). All application should be done via the online portal and must not be emailed to the Procurement email address.

UNDP applies a fair and transparent selection process that will take into account the competencies/skills of the applicants as well as their financial proposals.

Applications will be screened against qualifications and competencies specified above through a desk review.

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