Consultant - Governing Systemic Risk


Location : Home-based
Application Deadline :04-Dec-20 (Midnight New York, USA)
Time left :3d 10h 10m
Type of Contract :Individual Contract
Post Level :International Consultant
Languages Required :
English  
Starting Date :
(date when the selected candidate is expected to start)
07-Dec-2020


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.


Background

UNDP works in about 170 countries and territories, helping to achieve the eradication of poverty, reduction of inequalities and building of resilience to crises, shocks and disaster/climate risks to safeguard development. UNDP helps countries to develop policies, leadership skills, partnering abilities, institutional capabilities and access cutting edge technical and advisory support to build resilience. UNDP’s policy work is carried out at HQ, Regional and Country Office levels, and forms a contiguous spectrum of deep local knowledge to cutting-edge global perspectives and advocacy.

Recognizing the imperatives brought about by rapidly evolving development and risk management landscape, emerging needs and priorities and cross-cutting  nature of their interface, UNDP’s Global Policy Network (GPN) works across a wide range of knowledge domains and thematic areas to support countries and communities identify contextual development solutions, in support of the signature solutions and development outcomes envisioned in the Strategic Plan (2018-2021). The GPN also aims to provide rapid and integrated support to UNDP country offices, combining policy advice, technical expertise, financial resources, agile tools and procedures, and partnerships.

Within the GPN, the Crisis Bureau (CB) guides UNDP’s corporate crisis-related strategies and vision for crisis prevention, response and recovery. The Disaster Risk Reduction and Recovery for Building Resilience Team (DRT) within the Crisis Bureau supports the implementation of the Sendai Framework for DRR (2015-2030). One of the key focus areas under DRT’s strategy and its technical, policy and programmatic support to countries relates to strengthening disaster and climate risk governance systems, capacities and processes from national to local level. For several decades, UNDP has implemented a rich portfolio of risk governance projects long before the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction (2015-2030) dedicated one of its four Priorities for Action to “strengthening disaster risk governance to manage disasters”.

Alone from 2005 to 2016, UNDP implemented approximately 1,500 projects in nearly 150 countries with a considerable disaster & climate risk governance component. UNDP strengthens disaster & climate risk governance capacities through a comprehensive set of complementary policy and programme support services, covering the following categories: assessment and analysis; institutions (capacity development, training, coordination, decentralization; legal and regulatory frameworks; plans (action plans, national, sub-national and sector plans, and planning frameworks); policies (national and sector policies and strategies, and strategic frameworks; risk-informed development planning and budgeting (or mainstreaming); disaster recovery governance; community based and urban risk management; gender equality.

Whilst approaches to risk governance around the globe have been evolving for more than a decade, recent disasters  - such as the COVID-19 Pandemic, the Tohoku Earthquake and Tsunami, protracted droughts in the Horn of Africa, or the desertification and radicalization in the Sahel etc. - have shown that traditional risk management solutions need to be rethought and complemented with a multi-dimensional and systemic approach to govern complex risks and to prevent major, often simultaneous, crises with cascading and knock-on effects on multiple, interrelated systems at national, regional and global levels.

Against this backdrop, this study aims to explore the building blocks of effective risk governance systems that are fit for purpose to manage systemic risk in the 21st century. The paper will explore which elements of known risk governance approaches may still be valid in a world that is characterized by multi-dimensional and systemic risk, and identify which risk governance innovations will be essential to provide the enabling environment for sustainable development that is resilient to interrelated shocks and risks in the 21st century. The findings will help UNDP, and the DRT in particular, to reorient its dominant policy and programme support in the area of risk governance towards a new paradigm that embraces the governance of systemic risks. The findings will also inform and shape: (i) the UNDP Strategic Plan for 2022-2025; (ii) UNDP’s global advocacy efforts in the run-up to the next Global Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction in 2022, and (iii) the Global Assessment Report on Disaster Risk Reduction 2021 which will explore systems-based approaches to managing risk within efforts pursuing sustainable development, and the health and well-being of humans and ecosystems.

Objective:

The objective of this assignment is to prepare an analytical paper on the building blocks of effective risk governance systems that are fit for purpose to manage systemic risk in the 21st century. The paper will conceptualize a new risk governance paradigm that can navigate the new normal in a post COVID world and that is equipped to manage systemic risk, as well as emerging risks for which no historic track record exists yet. It will illustrate the characteristics of risk governance systems that are resilient to shocks, while also fostering the resilience of other systems with the objective to accelerate sustainable development.

Scope of Work:

The assignment will be implemented under short-term consultancy arrangements through individual contracts under the guidance and direct supervision of the global DRR Team Lead, and overall leadership of the Head of the DRT. The assignment may require a team approach since the deliverables may exceed the capacities of a single expert.

The scope of work requires:

  1. A review of the strengths and weaknesses of the dominant risk governance approach based on existing practice reviews, evaluations, lessons learned etc., taking as a point of departure the governance of disaster, climate change, environmental, health and conflict risks.
  2. A literature review and comparative review of existing and emerging concepts and elements on the governance of systemic or multi-dimensional risk, including the compilation and review of key tools, methodologies, guidance notes on systemic/multi-dimensional risk governance.
  3. A synthesis report describing the key characteristics of a new risk governance paradigm that is fit for purpose in the 21st century.
  4. Country case studies to test the new paradigm against reality to identify gaps and capacity development needs.
  5. Design and facilitation of in-house consultations in the form of webinars or dialogue series with UNDP's regional and select country teams, GPN technical teams (i.e. gender, governance, sustainable development, conflict prevention, climate change, SDGs, environment), as well as external consultations with relevant global and regional organizations, academic and research institutions (e.g. ODI, UNDRR, International Risk Governance Council, OECD, and selected donors).  
  6. Specific recommendations and key messages for policy makers, development practitioners, and UNDP on how to strengthen the governance of systemic risks with proposals for progress and impact indicators.

Methodology:

The assignment will use existing analysis, publications and knowledge products on the topic of risk governance. Also ongoing analysis and research shall be used as appropriate and accessible. Country  case studies may be required to complement existing materials which will be instrumental for comparing the new risk governance paradigm with the realities at country level.

The assignment will have a thematic coverage which entails systemic risk governance; risk-informed development; resilience; and systems thinking. It will take a multi-sector; governance coverage. It is expected to explore in particular, but not exclusively, the following characteristics of a new risk governance paradigm which are emerging from a preliminary analysis, i.e.: (i) can support the identification of risks and their interlinkages across relevant systems, (ii) can nurture capacities that contribute to the resilience of systems that are able to absorb, adapt, anticipate, prevent shock and threat, and eventually be transformative, (iii) can identify, negotiate and manage trade-offs between different interests originating from sub-systems (political economy), (iv) can bring together a broad range of perspectives and viewpoints by connecting formal and informal institutions and networks in a multi-stakeholder and people-centered approach to decision-making, (v) features new forms of public and societal accountability that address the diffused responsibility of complex networks, (vi) can consider linkages from the local to the national and global scale whilst being able to keep complexity at a manageable level, (vii) fosters systems thinking and learning to handle complexity and uncertainty more effectively.


Duties and Responsibilities

  • Work plan and inception report detailing methodology and approach to deliver the above scope of work, including selection criteria for country case studies, and internal and external review steps for key deliverables;
  • Literature review and analysis report on the strengths and weaknesses of dominant risk governance approaches, including overview of key tools, methodologies, guidance notes;
  • A synthesis report describing the key characteristics of a new risk governance paradigm that is fit for purpose in the 21st century, based on the analysis of existing and emerging concepts and elements;
  • A report summarizing the country case studies (four countries across at least three geographic regions) that are testing the new paradigm against reality to identify gaps and capacity development needs;
  • Concept notes and support for the organization of in-house and external consultations (i.e. webinars, or dialogues), and participation in consultations;
  • A guide for policy-makers with recommendations and key messages for decision-makers, practitioners, and UNDP on how to strengthen the governance of systemic risks with proposals for progress and impact indicators;
  • Slide decks on the findings of this assignment and key messages tailored to specific audience (internal, external).

All key deliverables will be subject to internal and/or external review.

Deliverables and timelines:

Deliverables

Dec

Jan

Feb

Mar

Remarks

  • Work plan and inception report

   X

 

 

 

First tranche payment

  • Chapter 1: Literature review & analysis on dominant risk governance approaches

   X

 

 

 

  • Chapter 2: A synthesis of the key characteristics of a new risk governance paradigm

   X

   X

 

 

Second tranche payment

  • Chapter 3: Status of systemic risk governance in case study countries

 

   X

   X

 

  • Chapter 4: Guide for policy-makers with recommendations

 

 

 

   X

Third tranche payment

  • Final paper on systemic risk governance

 

 

 

   X

  • Concept note and support for in-house and external consultations

 

 

   X

 

  • Slide decks

 

 

   X

 

Management Arrangements:

The assignment will be implemented under short-term consultancy arrangements with clearly identified work plan, tasks, responsibilities and deliverables to be achieved by 12th March (total duration of 14 weeks beginning 7. Dec. 2020). The assignment will be implemented under short-term consultancy arrangements through individual contracts under the guidance and direct supervision of the global DRR Team Lead, and overall leadership of the Head of the DRT. It will require close collaboration with DRT’s global and regional teams and key GPN teams representing UNDP’s practices on gender, governance, sustainable development, conflict prevention, climate change, SDGs, environment. The consultant9s) will be responsible for providing their own laptop. Payments will be made against satisfactory completion of deliverables as per the above time line. The payment will be based upon the certification and acceptance of the outputs of the relevant approval officer.

Travel:

The assignment will be home-based and does not envisage any travel. However, depending on the need, any travel outside the regular place of stay (home/office), if required, would be paid for separately and should not be included in the consultant’s fees.


Competencies

Corporate competencies:

  • Demonstrates integrity by modelling the UN’s values and ethical standards;
  • Understanding of the mandate and the role of UNDP would be an asset;
  • Promotes the vision, mission and strategic goals of UNDP;
  • Displays cultural, gender, religion, race, nationality and age sensitivity and adaptability;
  • Treats all people fairly without favouritism

Functional competencies:

  • Strong communication and analytical skills;
  • Demonstrated skills in drafting reports;
  • Ability to work under pressure with several tasks and various deadlines;
  • Actively generates creative, practical approaches and solutions to overcome challenging situations;
  • Excellent writing, presentation/public speaking skills;
  • A pro-active approach to problem-solving;
  • Computer literacy

Leadership and Self-Management skills:

  • Builds strong relationships with the working group and with the project partners; focuses on impact and results for the project partners and responds positively to feedback;
  • Cooperates with working group effectively and demonstrates strong conflict resolution skills;
  • Consistently approaches work with energy, positivity and a constructive attitude;
  • Demonstrates strong influencing and facilitation skills.


Required Skills and Experience

  • Master’s degree or higher in public administration, public infrastructure management, development / environmental studies or a discipline relevant to governance, institutional and policy analysis, development and risk management;
  • A minimum of 15 years of professional experience in research or planning, implementing and evaluating programs and projects related to risk governance and resilience building;
  • Strong research and analytical skills with a focus on systems thinking, risk and governance;
  • Advanced understanding of systemic risk governance and how to strengthen the governance of interconnected/multi-dimensional risks;
  • Professional experience in research or planning, implementing and evaluating programs and projects related to risk governance and resilience building;
  • Professional experience and understanding of working in development with a focus on the relationship of development, governance and risk;
  • Research or working experience in different regional contexts across Africa, Asia Pacific, Arab States and Latin America and the Caribbean.

Languages:

Fluency in English, both oral and written is required.

Working knowledge of other official UN languages (preferably French or Spanish) is an asset.

Recommended Presentation of Offer

The following documents should be submitted:

  1. Duly accomplished Letter of Confirmation of Interest and Availability using the template provided by UNDP; http://procurement-notices.undp.org/view_file.cfm?doc_id=45780 
  2. Personal CV or P11 http://sas.undp.org/Documents/P11_Personal_history_form.doc, indicating all your past experience from similar projects, as well as the contact details (email and telephone number) and at least three (3) references;
  3. Brief description of why you consider yourself as the most suitable for the assignment;
  4. Financial Proposal that indicates the all-inclusive fixed total contract price, supported by a breakdown of costs, as per template provided. The term ‘all-inclusive fee’ implies that all costs (e.g. living expenses, fees, health insurance, vaccination costs, visa costs, travel to duty station costs, taxes and social security and any other relevant expenses related to the performance of services). If you are employed by an organization/company/institution, and you expect your employer to charge a management fee in the process of releasing you to UNDP under Reimbursable Loan Agreement (RLA), you must indicate at this point, and ensure that all such costs are duly incorporated in the financial proposal submitted to UNDP. The interested candidates should provide their financial proposal on all-inclusive total lump sum for requested services with detailed breakdown.

IMPORTANT: The application is a separate two-step process. Failing to comply with the submission process may result in disqualifying the applicants.

Step 1: Interested candidates must include the following documents when submitting the applications in UNDP Job Site (Please note that only 1 (one) file can be uploaded therefore please include all documents in one file)

  • Personal CV or History Form (P11), 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 (the template can be downloaded from this link: www.sas.undp.org/Documents/P11_Personal_history_form.doc).
  • Brief description of why the individual considers him/herself as the most suitable candidate for the assignment. Indicate available start date.

Step 2: Submission of Financial Proposal. Applicants are requested to submit their financial proposals in US Dollars by an email to Mahmood Zahir mahmood.zahir@undp.org, using the financial proposal template available here: http://procurement-notices.undp.org/view_file.cfm?doc_id=45780. The proposals should be sent via an email with the following subject heading: 95427 - Consultant - Governing Systemic Risk by the deadline of this vacancy.

NOTE: Applications received after the deadline will not be considered.

Criteria for Selection of the Best Offer: Candidates will be evaluated using a combined scoring method with the qualifications and methodology weighted at 70% and the price offer weighted at 30%.  Only candidates obtaining a minimum of 49% (out of 70%) points on the technical qualifications part will be considered for the Financial Evaluation. The candidates will be required to provide three references which may be contacted to ascertain the skills and qualifications of the candidates.

Criteria for evaluation of qualifications (70 points maximum): Review of CVs against the below mentioned criteria:

  • Education: Master’s degree or higher in public administration, public infrastructure management, development / environmental studies or a discipline relevant to governance, institutional and policy analysis, development and risk management (5 points);
  • Competency: Research and analytical skills with a focus on systems thinking, risk and governance (15 points);
  • Competency: Understanding of systemic risk governance and how to strengthen the governance of interconnected/multi-dimensional risks (15 points);
  • Experience: At least 15 years of professional experience in research or planning, implementing and evaluating programs and projects related to risk governance and resilience building (10 points);
  • Experience: professional experience and understanding of working in development with a focus on the relationship of development, governance and risk (10 points);
  • Experience: Research or working experience in different regional contexts across Africa, Asia Pacific, Arab States and Latin America and the Caribbean (10 points);
  • Language: excellent command of oral and written English; Spanish or French is an asset (5 points).

Criteria for financial evaluation (30 points maximum): The following formula will be used to evaluate financial proposal: p = y (µ/z)

Where p=points for the financial proposal being evaluated;

y=maximum number of points for the financial proposal;

µ=price of the lowest priced proposal;

z = price of the proposal being evaluated.

(e.g. living expenses, fees, health insurance, vaccination costs, visa costs, travel to duty station costs, taxes and social security and any other relevant expenses related to the performance of services).

Annexes to the TOR

Annex 1 - IC Contract Template

Annex 2 – IC General Terms and Conditions

Annex 3 – RLA Template



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