Consultant for Technical Support LoCAL Scaling-up of Performance-based Climate Change Adaptation Grants Mechanism in Bhutan (with travels to different locations within the country)

Advertised on behalf of :

Location : BHUTAN
Application Deadline :25-May-21 (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 :18 months
Expected Duration of Assignment :18 months

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.


UN Capital Development Fund (UNCDF) and Local Development Finance

UNCDF works with local and central government institutions to improve the capacity of local governance institutions in planning, budgeting, public expenditure management, procurement and delivery management and other areas related to the application of development capital and other resources.

UNCDF is supporting an expanding portfolio of programmes in all regions that provide capital resources to local governance processes to enable them to meet the challenges of poverty reduction, the SDGs and climate change. These programmes promote local level public financial management and decentralized governance responses to these challenges.

The Local Climate Adaptive Living Facility (LoCAL)

The goal of the Local Climate Adaptive Living Facility (LoCAL) is to promote climate change resilient communities and local economies by increasing investments in Climate Change Adaptation (CCA) at the local level in target countries, thereby contributing to the achievement of the Paris Agreement and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), particularly the specific goals of poverty eradication (SDG1) and climate action (SDG13). The objectives are to increase local government access to climate finance to implement climate change adaptation investments in participating countries and to establish a standard and internationally recognized country-based mechanism to channel climate finance and increase local resilience through PBCRGs.

LoCAL focuses on the delivery of four outputs that will directly contribute to increasing local governments’ access to climate finance and building resilience to climate change:

Output 1 – CCA is mainstreamed into government’s planning and budgeting systems and investments are implemented in line with the PBCRG mechanism

Output 2 – Awareness of and capacities to respond to climate change at the local level are increased

Output 3 – The PBCRG system is effectively and sustainably established in participating countries and leads to an increased amount of CCA finance available to local government and local economy

Output 4 – The role of local authorities and of the PBCRGS in addressing climate change are increasingly recognized at international level, through outreach, learning and quality assurance

The LoCAL approach entails into capacity building of local governments and operates through Performance Based Climate Resilience Grants (PBCRG).

LoCAL works in three phases.

Phase I: Following scoping, the first phase entails testing in a small number (2-4) of local governments. Phase I has a budget of USD 300,000 per year. It can include co-financing from government or other partners. Phase I introduces the Performance-Based Climate Resilient Grant (PBCRG) over one or two fiscal cycles; it tests the minimum conditions and performance measures of the PBCRG and the relevance of the menu of investments (eligible adaptation measures). It provides the necessary experience and lessons for the refinement of the approach and the design of phase II in conjunction with the appropriate national authorities and partners.

Phase II: Phase II takes place in around 5 to 10 of local governments (of the appropriate tier) in a country. Phase II is usually financed by UNCDF together with financing partners and has generally a budget of USD 3,5 to USD 10 million. Funding can come directly through the LoCAL project or through parallel financing if government or other development partners make resources available to the LoCAL methodology, with TA and QA by UNCDF. The purpose of this phase is to demonstrate the effectiveness of LoCAL and create the conditions for a full national rollout of the approach.

Phase III: Phase III consist of a full national rollout of the PBCRG in the country based on the results and lessons of the previous phases. It is gradually extended to all local governments (of the appropriate tier). Phase III is expected to be financed by central government through a re-adjustment of the architecture of existing resources to enable financing of local adaptation, as well as through financing from international organizations, financing institutions and funds such as the Green Climate Fund.

In Bhutan, as a least developed, mountainous and landlocked country, Bhutan – and its population and ecosystems – are extremely vulnerable to climate change. Changing weather patterns affect communities in different ways. More intense rains, reduced soil moisture in high altitudes, flash floods and landslides put decades of development efforts at risk, with effects ranging from losses in agricultural production and food insecurity, to water stress and insecurity, climate-related disasters, changes to ecosystems and losses of biodiversity, and impacts on human health. The Government of Bhutan has a strong focus on the environment, climate change and poverty reduction in all operations from planning to implementation; this priority was most recently announced in the guidelines to central and local government agencies for the 11th Five-Year Plan. The Government of Bhutan has undergone a history of decentralization reforms. In 1981 and 1991, respectively, 20 dzongkhags (districts) and 205 gewogs (blocks) were instituted by royal decree. The role, mandate and capacities of local governments in Bhutan have been significantly strengthened in recent years. Initiated in 2008, the Joint Local Governance Support Programme aims to make finance systems effective and transparent for local government service delivery, while strengthening the central government’s policy, regulatory, supportive and supervisory functions. Its strategy includes assisting local governments in implementing block grants allocated for improving local-level infrastructure and in providing public services, while offering training and capacity development for local personnel and officials.

Against the above backdrop of emerging climate challenges, the United Nations Capital Development Fund’s Local Climate Adaptive Living Facility (LoCAL) has supported the local governments with increased financing to enhance community resilience and adaptive capacity for climate change at the local level through a system of performance-based climate change adaptation grants (PBCRGSs) in two periods, i.e. 2011-12 to 2012-13 and 2014-15 to 2015-16. The LoCAL PBCGR system is embedded in the Joint Local Governance Support Programme.

The overall goal of the LoCAL-Bhutan initiative is to strengthen the climate resilience of communities and the local economies in Bhutan through technical assistance to strengthen the awareness of climate threats and risk reduction processes and financial capacity building. The scaling up of the Performance-Based Climate Resilience Grants (PBCRG) (also called Performance-Based Climate Change Adaptation Grants) mechanism to a national level will support small-scale grants for the implementation of the adaptation interventions selected from a menu of eligible adaptation investments.  The technical assistance and capacity building support from UNCDF will ensure achievement of the program's adaptation objectives and demonstrate the program's contributions to adaptation through PBCRG.

Inspired by the success of the pilot work on PBCRGs through LoCAL Facility, UNCDF has continued to support the Department of Local Governance (DLG) of Bhutan on the Phase II of LoCAL for the further expansion over the years to 100 Gewogs across 16 Dzongkhags with budgetary support from the European Union (EU) and technical support from LoCAL.

In order to support the country to reach Phase III for the national roll out of PBCRGs, UNCDF has support the country on to receive funding from the Green Climate Fund and Adaptation Fund, including the accreditation and reediness programme and project preparation.

The Objective of LoCAL Phase III in Bhutan are to support the country to improve the resilience of local governments to climate change by increased access to climate change adaptation financing through performance-based climate resilience grants (PBCRGs). The programme’s core objectives are to ensure that Bhutan can accomplish the following:

Component 1: Awareness and capacity raised to respond to climate change at the local level

Component 2: Mainstreaming climate change adaptation into local governments’ planning and budgeting systems and adaptation interventions implemented in line with the PBCRG mechanism

Component 3: Establishment of the PBCRG and Monitoring, Evaluation, Accountability and Learning systems

Assignment background

Green Climate Fund (GCF)

The Green Climate Fund (GCF) was created to support the efforts of developing countries to respond to the challenge of climate change. GCF helps developing countries limit or reduce their greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and adapt to climate change. It seeks to promote a paradigm shift to low-emission and climate-resilient development, taking into account the needs of nations that are particularly vulnerable to climate change impacts. It was set up by the 194 countries who are parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) in 2010, as part of the Convention’s financial mechanism. It aims to deliver equal amounts of funding to mitigation and adaptation, while being guided by the Convention’s principles and provisions.

The GCF works with countries through various institutional set ups:

  • Countries nominate a National Designated Authority (NDA) to lead their engagement with the GCF and thus act as the country’s GCF focal point. NDAs can choose to enlist the assistance of non-accredited Delivery Partners to assist with readiness work and implementation of GCF-funded projects. Delivery Partners provide services such as: development of readiness request proposals; implementation and supervision; fiduciary management; progress reporting; and project completion and evaluation.
  • “Accredited Entities” (AEs) can be national (National Implementing Entities or NIEs), regional and international entities, or private sector ones (such as NGOs or banks). To become accredited, each AE has to complete a rigorous accreditation process (ensuring GCF fiduciary standards and requirements are met) and, once successful, they can develop funding proposals for projects and programmes related to climate change. In addition, prospective NIEs need to be nominated by their respective NDAs.

LoCAL provides technical support to prospective NIEs, inter alia, by supporting them with the GCF application procedures/processes, undertaking institutional gap assessment, supporting the development of documentation required by the GCF (ex. policies and procedures), supporting in answering questions raised by the GCF accreditation review committees, etc. LoCAL also supports the development and submission of GCF concept notes and full project proposals for a LoCAL scaling up in target countries.

Bhutan Trust Fund for Environmental Conservation (BTFEC)

The Bhutan Trust Fund for Environmental Conservation (BTFEC) is a national entity based in Bhutan. BTFEC is mandated to promote socioeconomic welfare of the people of Bhutan through funding projects that focus on the environmental conservation of forests, flora, fauna, wildlife, diverse ecosystems and biodiversity. BTFEC formulates its strategy and plans in line with Bhutan’s environmental conservation priorities and its strategic plan and aims to demonstrate its leadership role in environmental conservation by improving the results of grant funding and capacity-building. It finances activities in a wide range of sectors, such as agriculture and livestock, land management, environment and natural resource management, environmental sanitation, renewable energy, sustainable rural livelihoods, community development and eco-tourism.

BTFEC was nominated as the GCF NIE with a view to scaling up LoCAL. With LoCAL support, the BTFEC reached its second stage of GCF accreditation in 2019, with GCF Board approval achieved in 2020.

GCF accreditation will allow BTFEC to propose projects for GCF funding with support from the Gross National Happiness Commission (GNHC), the National Designated Agency (NDA) for GCF in Bhutan. BTFEC can propose projects between US$50 and US$250 million value for GCF assistance, with projects implemented directly by BTFEC or by nominated implementing entities. All projects must meet GCF requirements for financing.

Following GCF accreditation of the BTFEC, UNCDF/LoCAL is to support the development of a GCF concept note for scaling up PBCRGs to additional gewogs in Bhutan and develop complementary capacity of local governments to implement the grants effectively and efficiently.

Objectives of the Assignment

In view of the foregoing, the consulting assignment is to be undertaken with the main objective to support the UNCDF in the technical assistance and capacity building to the Royal Government of Bhutan in order to scale up LoCAL to the phase III, specifically by supporting UNCDF on the development of funding proposal for the LoCAL phase III scale up in Bhutan and on Implementation of LoCAL Climate Change Adaptation Framework (ACCAF) for Bhutan.

Duties and Responsibilities

Scope of Work: 

Working under the direct supervision of the LoCAL Facility Manager and in close collaboration with the UNCDF LoCAL regional or country teams, DLG/MoHAC, BTFEC, GNHC (NDA to GCF), line ministries, the consultant(s) will be responsible for the following deliverables/outputs:

Part I: Support UNCDF and Royal Government of Bhutan to develop funding proposals to GCF, Adaptation Fund or other Climate Funds

Part II: Support UNCDF develop annual investments data and information on LoCAL investment in Bhutan

Part III: Support DLG on the preparation of Annual Report 2020 for the implementation of PBCRG

Expected Outputs, Deliverables and Payment Terms

In line with the above-mentioned scope of work, duties and responsibilities, the consultant will provide for the following outputs and deliverables:

  • Satisfactory completion and submission of Annual Report 2020 for the implementation of PBCRG under DLG; Target completion: Q3/2021 (10%)
  • Satisfactory completion and submission of annual investments data and information in support of annual reporting to UNCDF; Target completion: Q1/2022 (25%)
  • Satisfactory completion and submission of GCF/AF Concept Note/Funding proposals and other technical annexes for GCF, Adaptation Fund which integrate technical inputs requested or addressed by AF/GCF/UNCDF; Target completion: Q3/2021-Q4/2022 (65%)

Monitoring and Progress Controls

A schedule of days worked, outputs produced, and costs incurred will be monitored by LoCAL Project Manager with support from UNCDF Programme Analyst and in close consultation with the UNCDF/UNDP country team

For each call-off, the consultant will have regular communication during the specific period of the assignment, on a weekly basis or bi-weekly basis, depending on the nature of the assignment, with the designated staff(s) via e-mail and skype for coordination and guidance purposes, ensuring consultants’ output quality and targets.

The Consultant is responsible for providing his/her own laptop during the course of his/her engagement with UNCDF.

This contract is under a framework agreement that will work on a call-off mechanism. The consultant will be ‘called’ upon to deliver a specific set of deliverables under a TOR and a purchasing order, indicating the total number of days required to complete the services. The contractor shall submit the invoices specifying the outputs delivered and the Certificate of Payment form for the approval of UNCDF.

Payments within each assignment will be phased and payment will be made against key deliverables. Payments will be authorized by the LoCAL Project Manager at the Regional Office after discussion and clearance at the country level.

The following supporting documents will serve as conditions for payments to an Individual Contractor:

•    Submission of an Invoice and Certificate of Payment (COP).

•    Submission of all deliverables / workplan / progress report with relevant supporting documentation; and

•    Review, approval and written acceptance of each deliverable by the LoCAL Facility Manager.

Final payment shall require a signed performance evaluation of the consultant.

Contract Modality

The successful individual under this procurement process will enter into a non-exclusive Framework Agreement, also known as Long-Term Agreement (LTA) to perform the services as described in the TORs on a need basis.

LTA is a framework agreement by and between UNCDF and individual where the latter may, at any time within the duration of the LTA, be required to render the agreed services at the agreed and fixed unit prices. An LTA specifies the unit price, scope of work, allowing for a framework agreement to be used when the services are needed. 

An LTA does not imply a financial commitment from UNCDF. LTA does not form a financial obligation nor commitment from UNCDF at the time the LTA contract is signed.  The LTA shall have a cumulative ceiling amount that may accrue to the individual contractor during the life of the LTA, but said amount shall remain as an upper limit, and must not and cannot be interpreted nor understood as neither a financial commitment nor guarantee of business volume.  It is important to note that, under an LTA, UNCDF does not guarantee that any specific quantity of services shall be made during the term of this agreement. 

When a request for service arises, and within the scope of the LTA, UNCDF can engage the individual or company holding an LTA through a “call-off” of the LTA.   Every call-off shall have specific TOR, which includes tasks, scope of services and outputs to be delivered within a specific period of time. For this particular process, the call-off shall be formalized through the issuance of a Purchase Order, attaching thereto the TOR, and any other document relevant to the call-off.  Financial commitments will only be established each time a Purchase Order for the specific services/TOR for Individual Contractor is issued.

As a result, the consultant under this position will be engaged on a needs based consultancy basis, as and when called upon to do so by the UNCDF LoCAL Facility Manager at the agreed “daily rate” and “number of days” as per TORs for each call-off.


Technical Competencies

  • Analytic capacity and demonstrated ability to process, analyze and synthesize complex, technical information;
  • Proven experience in the developing country context and working in different cultural settings;
  • Owns a comprehensive knowledge and experience with UNFCCC financing mechanisms and vertical funds;
  • Strong analytical, assessment capabilities; 
  • Proven experience writing outcome documents, actions plans and roadmap

Corporate competencies:

  • Demonstrates integrity by modelling the UN’s values and ethical standards;
  • Promotes the vision, mission, and strategic goals of UN;
  • Displays cultural, gender religion, race, nationality and age sensitivity and adaptability;
  • Treats all people fairly without favoritism.

Functional competencies:

  • Speaks confidently and exercises diplomacy in dealing with all partners, demonstrating tact, determination and sensitivity;
  • Builds strong relationships, focuses on impact and result and responds positively to feedback;
  • Consistently approaches work with energy and a positive, constructive attitude;
  • Demonstrates openness to change and ability to manage complexities;
  • Ability to lead effectively, facilitation as well as conflict resolution skills;
  • Remains calm, in control and good humored even under pressure.


  • Expert knowledge on climate change project preparation and climate finance landscape;
  • Expert knowledge of or field experience with implementing development and climate strategic documents as they related to local climate responses and related themes such as gender, environment, DRR and poverty;
  • Understanding of and respect for the interests and perspectives of different stakeholders in at the local and national level; proven ability to uphold, implement, and evaluate programmes.

Planning and organizing

  • Demonstrated ability to undertake a diversity of tasks within a demanding, multi-stakeholder environment, to prioritize among these tasks, and to work toward short deadlines.


  • Excellent drafting ability and communication skills, both oral and written, including a proven ability to communicate complex processes or technical information orally and to prepare documents that are clear, concise and meaningful.


  • Superior client orientation and inter-personal skills with a proven ability to work cooperatively with multi-disciplinary teams and staff and managers at all levels.

Required Skills and Experience

The consultant will have the following qualifications and experience:


  • At least a Master’s degree in Environmental Science or Management, Climate Change Adaptation, or sustainable Development or other related fields.

Professional Experience and skills:

  • A minimum of 10 years of consulting experience in the field of environment, climate change or sustainable development especially with the experience of working with local governments;
  • A minimum of 5 years’ experience in performance-based grant financing for local development
  • A minimum of 5 years’ experience with local governance system in LDCs particularly with regards to how local development plans are prepared, mainstream cross-cutting issues, are funded, implemented and monitored;
  • Knowledge and skill of Participatory Rural Appraisal methodology or equivalent;
  • Training facilitation skills


  • Fluency in English (written and verbal) and in Dzongkha (verbal) is required.


Application Process

Interested individuals must submit the documents mentioned below as proposals in order to demonstrate their qualifications (Note: the system does not allow multiple uploads of documents.  Applicants must make sure to upload all documents in one PDF file).

All applications must contain the following information:

  1. Duly accomplished Letter of Confirmation of Interest and Availability and Financial Proposal (do not upload your financial proposal online.), outlining all-inclusive fee (including professional fees and other professional expenses, such as insurance, taxes, etc.) supported by a breakdown of costs, as per template  The financial proposal should be emailed separately to with the subject: VA 98938-Consultant for Technical Support LoCAL Scaling-up of Performance-based Climate Change Adaptation Grants.  Mechanism in Bhutan ((with travels to different locations within the country), BHUTAN. The fees must be quoted in USD. 
  2. Personal profile including:
  • CV or P11, indicating all past experiences in similar projects as well as the contact details (e-mail and telephone number of the candidate)
  • Cover letter (1, up to max of 4 pages), indicating track record and experience of direct relevance to the assignment and describing why the candidate is the most suitable for the assignment;
  • Name, position/organization, and contact details (e-mail addresses, telephone numbers) of 3 professional references

If an Offeror is employed by an organization/company/institution, and he/she expects his/her employer to charge a management fee in the process of releasing him/her to UNCDF under Reimbursable Loan Agreement (RLA), the Offeror must indicate at this point, and ensure that all such costs are duly incorporated in the financial proposal submitted to UNCDF. 

When applying for this consultancy position, the Offeror must apply with his/her official name as shown in the government issued identification document (e.g. passport and/or driver license). Contract award is subject to this verification.

Failure to submit all the abovementioned documents may result in rejection of the application.

Evaluation Criteria

Applications will be rated on both technical and financial submissions. The following selection method will be used: Highest rated proposal using the combined scoring method, which assigns the weight distribution between the technical and financial proposals. The overall combined score will be 100 points, where weight distribution shall be 70% technical (30% desk review + 40% interview) and 30% financial.

Step I: Screening

Applications will be screened and only applicants meeting the following minimum criteria will progress to the pool for shortlisting:

  • At least a Master’s degree in Environmental Science or Management, Climate Change Adaptation, or sustainable Development or other related fields.
  • A minimum of 10 years of experience in the field of environment, climate change or sustainable development especially with the experience of working with local governments;

Step II: Shortlisting by Desk Review: (100 Points X 30%)

UNCDF will conduct a desk review to produce a shortlist of candidates and technically evaluate candidates as follows:

1. At least a Master’s degree in Environmental Science or Management, Climate Change Adaptation, or sustainable Development or other related fields (10 points)

2. A minimum of 5 years consulting experience in the field of mainstreaming environment, climate change or sustainable development into government planning system especially working with different tires of governments in Bhutan including GNHC and DLG (20 points)

3. A minimum of 5 years’ experience in performance-based grant financing for to mainstream the climate adaptation for local development in Bhutan (20 points)

4. A minimum of 5 years of the governance system in LDCs particularly with regards to how development plans are prepared, funded, implemented and monitored at the local level (20 points)

5. Knowledge and skill of monitoring and evaluation; capacity assessment and development; policy appraisal and strategic planning, environmental and social assessments pertaining to climate change adaptation and mitigation, biodiversity conservation, sustainable land management, disaster risk management, poverty-environment mainstreaming, and integrated conservation and development (20 points)

6. Track record on the assignment from international development organization to support the government of Bhutan (5 points)

7. Fluency in English (written and verbal) and in Dzongkha (verbal) is required (5 points)

Step III: Technical interviews (100 points x 40%)

A competency-based Interview shall be conducted with the top three or four candidates who score the highest in Step II (minimum of 70 points). Candidates will be tested on the same key work areas, in greater depth, with the same weighting, namely:

  • Relevant experience
  • Sector Technical Knowledge 
  • Program Development and Management
  • Understanding of the mission

Only candidates obtaining a minimum of 70% on the total of Step II: Desk Review and Step III: Interview will be considered as technically qualified and will be reviewed further for financial evaluation.

Step IV: Financial Evaluation:

The following formula will be used to evaluate financial proposal:

Lowest priced proposal/price of the proposal being evaluated x 30%.

Step V: Award of Long-term Agreement (LTA):

The award of the LTA will be made to the applicant whose offer has been evaluated and determined.

o     Responsive/compliant/acceptable vis-à-vis the requirements of the TOR and the project operating environment; and

o     Having received the highest score out of a pre-determined set of weighted technical (70%) and financial (30%) criteria.

Both individual consultants and individuals employed by a company or institution are welcome to apply.

Any individual employed by a company or institution who would like to submit an offer in response to a Procurement Notice for IC must do so in their individual capacity (providing a CV so that their qualifications may be judged accordingly).

UNCDF 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.

Individual Consultants are responsible for ensuring they have vaccinations/inoculations when traveling to certain countries, as designated by the UN Medical Director. Consultants are also required to comply with the UN security directives set forth under  If the consultant is over 65 years old, UNCDF reserves the right to require full medical certification and clearance from the consultant’s physician prior to commencing the travel.


UNDP’s Individual Consultant’s General Terms and Conditions are provided here:



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