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Mid-Term Review of GoI-UNDP-GEF – India High Range Mountain Landscape Project
|Location :||New Delhi, INDIA|
|Application Deadline :||24-Nov-20 (Midnight New York, USA)|
|Type of Contract :||Individual Contract|
|Post Level :||International Consultant|
|Languages Required :||English|
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.
This is the Terms of Reference (ToR) for -the Midterm Review (MTR) of the full-sized UNDP-supported GEF-financed project titled India High Range Mountain Landscape Project (PIMS 4651) implemented by UNDP in close consultation with the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, which is to be undertaken in 2020. The project started on the 5 May 2014 and is in its seventh year of implementation. This ToR sets out the expectations for this MTR.
The Munnar landscape in India’s Western Ghats is a globally significant biodiversity region. It exhibits high levels of endemism and biological diversity; it is an important bird area and has many globally threatened species of fauna and flora. It is also one of the important tiger conservation landscapes and harbours the largest global population of Nilgiri Tahr, as well as a significant population of Grizzled Giant Squirrel (both threatened species).It is situated at the catchment of three major river systems of peninsular India and supports important economic sectors like cardamom, tea and tourism.
At present, the Munnar landscape is a complex mosaic of land uses where conservation, economic production and livelihood requirements assume equal primacy & profoundly influence each other. These contribute to the competitive use of natural resources, affecting vital ecological processes. The rapidly changing developmental context, demographic contours and resource use configurations pose a challenge to the landscape’s long-term ecological sustainability and livelihood security. The existing planning and policy framework, as well as the institutional arrangements in the Munnar landscape, are inadequate to address biodiversity conservation from a landscape perspective. The project aims to mainstream biodiversity concerns in key production sectors through landscape approach. The project covers an area of 2198 sq.km. spread over the Idukki, Ernakulam and Thrissur districts in Kerala.
Project Duration: 2014-2022
GEF Allocation: US$ 6,275,000
Co-finance (in-kind): Government – US$ 28 million; UNDP – US$ 1 million; Private sector – US$ 1 million
Implementation modality: Direct Implementation Modality
Project partners: Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, Government of India and State Government of Kerala – Haritha Kerala Mission and Department of Forest and Wildlife
Objective: Mainstreaming biodiversity considerations in production sectors through a landscape approach in conservation in Munnar region of Western Ghats in India.
The project would contribute in sustainable management of globally significant mountain biodiversity of India by mainstreaming the biodiversity conservation considerations into production sectors, while sustaining livelihoods of local communities. It would also address retrogressive factors including the anticipated impacts of climate change and other associated pressures.
Strengthening governance: An effective governance framework for multiple- use mountain landscape management to be in place
Environmental sustainability: Multiple use mountain landscape management is applied securing the ecological integrity of High Range Mountain Landscape
Community Empowerment: Strengthened community capacities for community based sustainable use and management of wild resources.
The project is being directly implemented by UNDP in close cooperation with the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change. UNDP is responsible for all financial management, reporting, procurement and recruitment services.
A National level Project Steering Committee (NPSC) based in Delhi and a State level Project Steering Committee (SPSC) based in Thiruvananthapuram woulbe responsible for supervising the project activities.
National Project Steering Committee (NPSC)
The Additional Director General of Forests (Wildlife), Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change (MoEFCC), Govt. of India and a senior official of the UNDP jointly chair the National Project Steering Committee (NPSC).
Members of NPSC include Inspector General of Forests (Wildlife), Operational Focal Point of Global Environment Facility (GEF-OFP), Joint Secretary (in charge of Biodiversity), Joint Secretary (in Charge of Mountains), representatives of the Ministries of Agriculture, Commerce, Tourism, Tribal Affairs, Panchayati Raj, Rural Development, and New and Renewable Energy, Chairman, National Bio Diversity Authority, Secretary, Local Self Government, Kerala, Secretary, Forests, Kerala, two representatives from non-governmental sector (one from private sector/ industries) nominated by the Ministry of Environment, Forests, and Climate Change and two representatives from the UNDP.
The chairman is authorised to invite experts and other officials to NPSC as per requirement. The responsibilities of NPSC include ensuring overall effectiveness of programme implementation, providing policy guidance and approval of budgeted Annual Work Plans (AWP) forwarded by the State. NPSC meets at least once a year. The MoEF&CC is supported by the National Project Management Unit.
State Project Steering Committee (SPSC)
The Chief Secretary, Government of Kerala and a senior official from UNDP would jointly chair the SPSC. The Forest Secretary would be the Convener and LSG Secretary would be a member of SPSC.
The Principal Chief Conservator of Forests and Chief Wildlife Warden, and Chairman and CEO of State Forest Development Agency are the members of SPSC. Representatives of MoEFCC (that includes GEF OFP and IG-Forest), the State Planning Board, various departments (Finance, Agriculture, Animal Husbandry, Dairy Development, Rural Development, Minor Irrigation, Town and Country Planning, Environment and Climate Change, Fisheries, Tourism, Scheduled Tribe, Scheduled Caste, Soil Survey and Soil Conservation, Ground Water), Kudumbashree, Haritha Keralam Mission, Suchitwa Mission, State Biodiversity Board, State Medicinal Plant Board, Land Use Board, Tea Board, Agency for Non-Conventional Energy and Rural Technology (ANERT), Plantation Corporation, and Kerala Forest Development Corporation would be the members. The District Collectors of Idukki, Ernakulam, and Thrissur, representatives of Hindustan Newsprint Limited, and United Planters’ Association of South India (UPASI) are also be the members of the SPSC.
The SPSC meets once a year or more on approval of Chair. The State Project Steering Committee endorses and forwards the AWP to the NPSC and UNDP for approval. The other responsibilities include approval of activities related to AWP, supervision of project activities, review and recommendations, ensuring departmental and sectoral coordination for the smooth functioning of the project, policy support and communication with NPSC. The SPSC ensures that the officials involved in the project have sufficient tenure for the smooth implementation of the project. SPSC ensures that the co-financing arrangements of the Government of Kerala and private sector are met through scheme commitments. SPSC also ensures its implementation through respective agencies are in line with the outcome and outputs of the project. All the decisions taken by SPSC will be in accordance with the standards that ensure management of development results, best value for money, fairness, integrity, transparency and effective international cooperation. This will uphold the ultimate accountability of the UNDP. The SPSC is hosted by the State LSGD, assisted by a State Project Management Unit.
The outbreak of COVID-19 in different parts of the world is a major concern. India is also fighting this very tough task for controlling the virus outbreak and has managed its growth rate through some strict measures. Collective and focused efforts for containment and management of COVID-19 by the Government of India along with the States/UTs have led to the number of recovered cases among COVID-19 patients. GoI has confirmed 6,623,815 COVID-19 cases, and 102,685 deaths. India’s total recovered cases have crossed5.5 million. This takes the national Recovery Rate amongst COVID-19 to 87.4 %.
In terms of the project, several consultations and activities including the capacity gap assessments and capacity building have been put on hold due the COVID-19 pandemic. This has affected the pace of implementation of the project and the delivery of desired results as outlined in the project document. The State of Kerala in which this project operates was one of the first to be heavily impacted by COVID-19 and field activities were suspended from February to June 2020. A rapid socio-economic assessment was conducted by the project to gather information on the impacts of COVID-19, showing negative impacts on the socio-economic situations in the project landscape, especially on households that depend on the tourism sector, vegetable farming, reed product sales, tea farming, and self-help group members working in recycling and scrap network. Continued adaptation in work planning and implementation will need to continue over coming months as there are still some restrictions in place impacting the project landscape and the COVID-19 situation remains volatile.
Duties and Responsibilities
SCOPE OF THE ASSIGNMENT
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 approach and methodology of the MTR is attached as Annexure A.
The International Consultant will have the following roles and responsibilities:
The total duration of the MTR will be approximately 35 working days over a time period of 8 weeks and shall not exceed three months from when the consultant(s) are hired. The tentative MTR timeframe is as follows:
Options for site visits should be provided in the Inception Report.
Required Skills and Experience
The International Consultant will be responsible for the overall development of the Mid Term Review Report. The consultant 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 selection of International Consultant will be aimed at maximizing the overall “team” qualities in the following areas:
Education (20% weightage)
Experience (40% weightage)
Language (10% weightage)
Criteria for issuing the final payment of 40%1
In line with the UNDP’s financial regulations, when determined by the Commissioning Unit and/or the consultant that a deliverable or service cannot be satisfactorily completed due to the impact of COVID-19 and limitations to the MTR, 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.
APPLICATION PROCESS 2
Recommended Presentation of Proposal:
Note - The following documents can be accessed by clicking the link:
General Conditions for Individual Contract-
Offerors Letter to UNDP Confirming Interest and Availability for the Individual Contractor (IC) Assignment, including Financial Proposal template-
 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.
 Engagement of the consultants should be done in line with guidelines for hiring consultants in the POPP: https://info.undp.org/global/popp/Pages/default.aspx
Criteria for Evaluation of Proposal: Only those applications which are responsive and compliant will be evaluated. Offers will be evaluated according to the Combined Scoring method – where the educational background and experience on similar assignments will be weighted at 70% and the price proposal will weigh as 30% of the total scoring. The applicant receiving the Highest Combined Score that has also accepted UNDP’s General Terms and Conditions will be awarded the contract.
Annex – 1
Annex - 2