International Terminal Evaluation for Project: Strengthening targeted capacities for improved decision making and main streaming of global environmental obligations

United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)

Khartoum, Sudan 🇸🇩

Background

INTRODUCTION:

In accordance with UNDP and GEF M&E policies and procedures, all full- and medium-sized UNDP-supported GEF-financed projects are required to undergo a Terminal Evaluation (TE) at the end of the project. This Terms of Reference (ToR) sets out the expectations for the TE of the medium-sized project titled: “Strengthening targeted capacities for improved decision making and mainstreaming of global environmental obligations”. The project started in 2018 and is ending Dec 2022. The TE process must follow the guidance outlined in the document ‘Guidance For Conducting Terminal Evaluations of UNDP-Supported, GEF-Financed Projects’ ( Guidance for Terminal Evaluations of UNDP-supported GEF-financed Projects ).

PROJECT BACKGROUND AND CONTEXT

The goal of this project is to strengthen Sudan’s ability to achieve environmentally sound and sustainable development that also protects the global environment as defined by the three Rio Conventions.The immediate objective of this project is to strengthen targeted national capacities to deliver and sustain global environmental outcomes within the framework of sustainable development priorities.This will be achieved through five project components, within which activities to strengthen systemic, institutional, and individual capacities will be organized largely through learning-by-doing exercises and demonstrations.

At the end of the project, activities will have resulted in a set of improved capacities to meet and sustain Rio Convention objectives.This project will have strengthened and helped institutionalize commitments under the Rio Conventions by ensuring a flow of assistance and information between the local, national and global level.

The expected outcome of the project is that Sudan will be able to achieve global environmental benefits at a lower transactional cost as well as being able to respond faster and more appropriately to conservation needs.To this end, Sudan is expected to: a) improve access to best practices and best available knowledge, including innovative research; b) improve coordination, collaboration, and delegation of responsibilities among key agencies and other important organizations; c) enhance institutional and technical capacities; d) improve awareness of global environmental values; and e) update the NCSA to reflect post 2015-SDGs.While the expected outcomes of the project from a GEF perspective are improved capacities to meet and sustain global environmental priorities, the expected outcomes from a national socio-economic development perspective are improved capacities to plan and make decisions that will meet and sustain sustainable development priorities.The project will achieve this by mainstreaming global environment into planning and decision-making process (i.e., integrating environmental-development best practices that reflect global environmental priorities and the Post-2015 Sustainable Development Goals).

This project will be implemented through five linked project components:

  1. Strengthened policy and legal instruments
  2. Enhanced capacities to mainstream, develop, and apply policies and legislative frameworks for the cost-effective implementation of the three Rio Conventions
  3. Setting up and early implementation of an environmental management information system for improved monitoring and assessment of global environmental impacts and trends
  4. Improved environmental attitudes and values for the global environment
  5. Updated National Capacity Self-Assessment (NCSA) document

The project will assist the Government of Sudan to achieve the national priorities as set out in its National Strategic Plan (2007- 2031), which takes into account the national policies, strategies and comprehensive plans, including the Twenty-Five-Year National Strategy (2002-2027), the Five Year Plan (2012-2016), the Five Year Programme for Economic Reform (2015-2019).In particular, the Twenty-Five-Year National Strategy contains an Environment and Physical Development Strategy that consists of 20 goals that align with the CCCD project. These goals range from strengthening human capabilities and developing administrative systems, strengthening bilateral relations between the ministry and its counterparts institutions, local, regional and international organizations and professional and scientific societies, and activating laws and regulations.

This project is also in line with Sudan’s UNDAF (2018-2021) (Government of Sudan; United Nations Country Team, 2017).The UNDAF incorporates the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, national development priorities, and the Sustainable Development Goals.The UNDAF aims to increase accountability, governance, and institutional capacities at both the federal and state level. This project is most closely aligned with two UNDAF Outcomes, namely:

Outcome 2: “By 2021, people’s resilience to consequences of climate change, environmental stresses and natural hazards is enhanced through strengthened institutions, policies, plans and programmes”, and

Outcome 4: “By 2021, national, state and local institutions are more effective to carry out their mandates including strengthened normative frameworks that respect human rights and fundamental freedoms and ensure effective service delivery.”

Another important set of national priorities are outlined in Sudan’s Interim Poverty Reduction Strategy Paper (PRSP), which is the framework and the road map for the elaboration and implementation of the full PRSP.The PRSP works to achieve the MDGs as the medium-term development targets for Sudan.Along with other national priorities, the PRSP identified the following needs for addressing serious environmental challenges:

  • Increasing public awareness and ensuring  community participation to change behaviors regarding the environment
  • Integrating environmental concerns into all development policies, planning and activities at   all levels
  • Strengthening the institutional and technical capacities for environmental management
  • Enhancing cross-sectoral institutional coordination on environmental issues
  • Increasing the enforcement of environmental laws and regulations

While the point of entry for GEF funding is the global environment, the relevance of the project to national socio-economic development will be its contribution to strengthening the institutional sustainability of Sudan’s development pursuits in ways that are more environmentally friendly and resilient to the impacts of climate change. The project will make these connections through its strategy to mainstream obligations under the Rio Conventions into national development and sectoral planning framework and supporting capacities.

This project will serve as an important mechanism to implement capacity development recommendations of the National Capacity Self-Assessment (NCSA) that was prepared in 2008 even though many of these would have been addressed to a certain extent by subsequent capacity development projects.Notwithstanding, this project is intended to make an important contribution to reconciling the most recent capacity development recommendations that emerged from other national assessments and communications under the three Rio Conventions, namely the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), Convention to Combat Desertification (CCD), and the Framework Convention on Climate Change (FCCC).

COVID-19 had largely affected Sudan causing deaths and had negatively restricted movements. As well, COVID had also impact on the implementation of the project/ programme/outcome that will be  evaluated.

TE PURPOSE

The TE will assess the achievement of project results against what was expected to be achieved and draw lessons that can both improve the sustainability of benefits from this project, and aid in the overall enhancement of UNDP programming. The TE report promotes accountability and transparency and assesses the extent of project accomplishments. Both UNDP and the implementing partner will benefit form the results of the evaluation. The TE will be conducted at this time as the project is approaching its operational closure date by the end of 2022.

The Scope and objectives of the TE should detail and include: aspects of the project to be covered by the TE such as the time frame and the primary issues of concern to users that the TE needs to address.  The TE will also address issues relate directly to the questions in the evaluation matrix regarding the relevance, efficiency, effectiveness, sustainability etc. of the project.

It is to be noted that project was very much affected by COVID and its restrictions since the bulk of its interventions were dependent on interactions amongst institutions ad individuals. A large set of capacity development workshops and event had to be delayed because of COVID.

Duties and Responsibilities

TE APPROACH & METHODOLOGY

The TE report must provide evidence-based information that is credible, reliable and useful.

The TE 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 APRs, project budget revisions, lesson learned reports, national strategic and legal documents, and any other materials that the team considers useful for this evidence-based evaluation. The TE team will review the baseline  and GEF focal area Core Indicators/Tracking Tools submitted to the GEF at the CEO endorsement and the terminal Core Indicators/Tracking Tools that must be completed before the TE field mission begins. 

The TE team is expected to follow a participatory and consultative approach ensuring close engagement with the Project Team, government counterparts (the GEF Operational Focal Point), Implementing Partners, the UNDP Country Office, the Regional Technical Advisor, direct beneficiaries and other stakeholders.

Engagement of stakeholders is vital to a successful TE. Stakeholder involvement should include interviews with stakeholders who have project responsibilities, including but not limited to:

  • Higher Council for Environment & Natural Resources
  • Ministry of Agriculture.
  • National Forestry Corporation.
  • Ministry of Finance and economic planning.
  • Ministry of Animal Resources.
  • Ministry of Education.
  • States Councils for Environment and Natural Resources
  • States ministries of production and economic resources.
  • The National Centre for Research.
  • Agricultural Research Corporation.

The specific design and methodology for the TE should emerge from consultations between the TE team and the above-mentioned parties regarding what is appropriate and feasible for meeting the TE purpose and objectives and answering the evaluation questions, given limitations of budget, time and data. The TE team must, however, use gender-responsive methodologies and tools and ensure that gender considerations and women’s empowerment, as well as other cross-cutting issues and SDGs are incorporated into the TE report.

The final methodological approach including interview schedule, field visits and data to be used in the evaluation must be clearly outlined in the TE Inception Report and be fully discussed and agreed between UNDP, stakeholders and the TE team.

The final report must describe the full TE approach taken and the rationale for the approach making explicit the underlying assumptions, challenges, strengths and weaknesses about the methods and approach of the evaluation.

The TE team Evaluators should conduct field visits for 10 days to be able to meet with relevant stakeholders and project teams form 15-25 June, if situation permits. Otherwise, field missions will be conducted by the National evaluator, while the International evaluators can work remotely.

DETAILED SCOPE OF THE TE

The TE will assess project performance against expectations set out in the project’s Logical Framework/Results Framework (see ToR Annex A). The TE will assess results according to the criteria outlined in the Guidance for TEs of UNDP-supported GEF-financed Projects( Guidance for Terminal Evaluations of UNDP-supported GEF-financed Projects ). The Findings section of the TE report will cover the topics listed below.

A full outline of the TE report’s content is provided in ToR Annex C.

The asterisk “(*)” indicates criteria for which a rating is required.Findings

Project Design/Formulation

  • National priorities and country driven-ness
  • Theory of Change
  • Gender equality and women’s empowerment
  • Social and Environmental Safeguards
  • Analysis of Results Framework: project logic and strategy, indicators
  • Assumptions and Risks
  • Lessons from other relevant projects (e.g. same focal area) incorporated into project design
  • Planned stakeholder participation
  • Linkages between project and other interventions within the sector
  • Management arrangements

Project Implementation

  • Adaptive management (changes to the project design and project outputs during implementation)
  • Actual stakeholder participation and partnership arrangements
  • Project Finance and Co-finance
  • Monitoring & Evaluation: design at entry (*), implementation (*), and overall assessment of M&E (*)
  • Implementing Agency (UNDP) (*) and Executing Agency (*), overall project oversight/implementation and execution (*)
  • Risk Management, including Social and Environmental Standards

Project Results

  • Assess the achievement of outcomes against indicators by reporting on the level of progress for each objective and outcome indicator at the time of the TE and noting final achievements
  • Relevance (*), Effectiveness (*), Efficiency (*) and overall project outcome (*)
  • Sustainability: financial (*)   , socio-political (*), institutional framework and governance (*), environmental (*), overall likelihood of sustainability (*)
  • Country ownership
  • Gender equality and women’s empowerment
  • Cross-cutting issues (poverty alleviation, improved governance, climate change mitigation and adaptation, disaster prevention and recovery, human rights, capacity development, South-South cooperation, knowledge management, volunteerism, etc., as relevant)
  • GEF Additionality
  • Catalytic Role / Replication Effect
  • Progress to impact 

Main Findings, Conclusions, Recommendations and Lessons Learned

  • The TE team will include a summary of the main findings of the TE report. Findings should be presented as statements of fact that are based on analysis of the data.
  •  The section on conclusions will be written in light of the findings. Conclusions should be comprehensive and balanced statements that are well substantiated by evidence and logically connected to the TE findings. They should highlight the strengths, weaknesses and results of the project, respond to key evaluation questions and provide insights into the identification of and/or solutions to important problems or issues pertinent to project beneficiaries, UNDP and the GEF, including issues in relation to gender equality and women’s empowerment.
  • Recommendations should provide concrete, practical, feasible and targeted recommendations directed to the intended users of the evaluation about what actions to take and decisions to make. The recommendations should be specifically supported by the evidence and linked to the findings and conclusions around key questions addressed by the evaluation.
  • The TE report should also include lessons that can be taken from the evaluation, including best and worst practices in addressing issues relating to relevance, performance and success that can provide knowledge gained from the particular circumstance (programmatic and evaluation methods used, partnerships, financial leveraging, etc.) that are applicable to other GEF and UNDP interventions. When possible, the TE team should include examples of good practices in project design and implementation.
  • It is important for the conclusions, recommendations and lessons learned of the TE report to include results related to gender equality and empowerment of women.

The TE report will include an Evaluation Ratings Table, as shown below:

TE ARRANGEMENTS

The principal responsibility for managing the TE resides with the UNDP Sudan CO. The UNDP Sudan CO will contract the evaluators and ensure the timely provision of per diems and travel arrangements within the country for the TE team. The Project Team will be responsible for liaising with the TE team to provide all relevant documents, set up stakeholder interviews, and arrange field visits.

TE TEAM COMPOSITION

A team of two independent evaluators will conduct the TE; a Team Leader (International Expert) and a National Expert. The team leader will be responsible for the overall design and writing up of the TE report and the National Experts will support the leader, in data collection, verifications, documentation  and work with the Project Team in developing the TE itinerary, etc.

The evaluator(s) cannot have participated in the project preparation, formulation and/or implementation (including the writing of the project document), must not have conducted this project’s Review and should not have a conflict of interest with the project’s related activities.

The selection of evaluators will be aimed at maximizing the overall “team” qualities in the following areas:

Education (For both the national and international evaluators)

  • Advanced degree in (Science, Natural Resources, Environmental Science/Studies ) or other closely related field;
  • EVALUATOR ETHICSThe TE team will be held to the highest ethical standards and is required to sign a code of conduct upon acceptance of the assignment. This evaluation will be conducted in accordance with the principles outlined in the UNEG ‘Ethical Guidelines for Evaluation’. The evaluator 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 evaluator must also ensure security of collected information before and after the evaluation and protocols to ensure anonymity and confidentiality of sources of information where that is expected. The information knowledge and data gathered in the evaluation process must also be solely used for the evaluation and not for other uses without the express authorization of UNDP and partners.PAYMENT SCHEDULE 
  • 20% payment upon satisfactory delivery of the final TE Inception Report and approval by the UNDP Sudan CO
  • 40% payment upon satisfactory delivery of the draft TE report to the UNDP Sudan CO
  • 40%payment upon satisfactory delivery of the final TE report and approval by the UNDP Sudan CO and RTA (via signatures on the TE Report Clearance Form) and delivery of completed TE Audit Trail
  • Criteria for issuing the final payment of 40%:
  • The final TE report includes all requirements outlined in the TE TOR and is in accordance with the TE guidance.
  • The final TE report is clearly written, logically organized, and is specific for this project (i.e. text has not been cut & pasted from other TE reports).
  • The Audit Trail includes responses to and justification for each comment listed.
  • APPLICATION PROCESSRecommended Presentation of Proposal:
  • Letter of Confirmation of Interest and Availability using the template provided by UNDP;
  • CV and a Personal History Form (P11 form);
  • 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 that indicates the all-inclusive fixed total contract price and all other travel related costs (such as flight ticket, per diem, etc), supported by a breakdown of costs, as per template attached to the Letter of Confirmation of Interest template. If an applicant 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 UNDP under Reimbursable Loan Agreement (RLA), the applicant must indicate at this point, and ensure that all such costs are duly incorporated in the financial proposal submitted to UNDP.
  • All application materials should be submitted online in the  UNDP Procurement website indicating the following reference “Consultant for Terminal Evaluation of the project (Strengthening targeted capacities for improved decision making and mainstreaming of global environmental obligations)” by closing date of 5 May/2022). Incomplete applications will be excluded from further consideration.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.TOR ANNEXES
  • ToR Annex A: Project Logical/Results Framework
  • ToR Annex B: Project Information Package to be reviewed by TE team
  • ToR Annex C: Content of the TE report
  • ToR Annex D: Evaluation Criteria Matrix template
  • ToR Annex E: UNEG Code of Conduct for Evaluators
  • ToR Annex F: TE Rating Scales
  • ToR Annex G: TE Report Clearance Form
  • ToR Annex H: TE Audit Trail
  • ToR Annex C: Content of the TE report
  • Title page
  • Tile of UNDP-supported GEF-financed project
  • UNDP PIMS ID and GEF ID
  • TE timeframe and date of final TE report
  • Region and countries included in the project
  • GEF Focal Area/Strategic Program
  • Executing Agency, Implementing partner and other project partners
  • TE Team members
  • Acknowledgements
  • Table of Contents
  • Acronyms and Abbreviations
  • Executive Summary (3-4 pages)
  • Project Information Table
  • Project Description (brief)
  • Evaluation Ratings Table
  • Concise summary of findings, conclusions and lessons learned
  • Recommendations summary table
  • Introduction (2-3 pages)
  • Purpose and objective of the TE
  • Scope
  • Methodology
  • Data Collection & Analysis
  • Ethics
  • Limitations to the evaluation
  • Structure of the TE report
  • Project Description (3-5 pages)
  • Project start and duration, including milestones
  • Development context: environmental, socio-economic, institutional, and policy factors relevant to the project objective and scope
  • Problems that the project sought to address: threats and barriers targeted
  • Immediate and development objectives of the project
  • Expected results
  • Main stakeholders: summary list
  • Theory of Change
  • Findings
  • (in addition to a descriptive assessment, all criteria marked with (*) must be given a rating[4])4.1 Project Design/Formulation
  • Analysis of Results Framework: project logic and strategy, indicators
  • Assumptions and Risks
  • Lessons from other relevant projects (e.g. same focal area) incorporated into project design
  • Planned stakeholder participation
  • Linkages between project and other interventions within the sector
    1. Project Implementation
  • Adaptive management (changes to the project design and project outputs during implementation)
  • Actual stakeholder participation and partnership arrangements
  • Project Finance and Co-finance
  • Monitoring & Evaluation: design at entry (*), implementation (*), and overall assessment of M&E (*)
  • UNDPimplementation/oversight (*) and Implementing Partner execution (*), overall project implementation/execution (*), coordination, and operational issues
    1. Project Results
  • Progress towards objective and expected outcomes (*)
  • Relevance (*)
  • Effectiveness (*)
  • Efficiency (*)
  • Overall Outcome (*)
  • Country ownership
  • Gender
  • Other Cross-cutting Issues
  • Social and Environmental Standards
  • Sustainability: financial (*), socio-economic (*), institutional framework and governance (*), environmental (*), and overall likelihood (*)
  • Country Ownership
  • Gender equality and women’s empowerment
  • Cross-cutting Issues
  • GEF Additionality
  • Catalytic Role / Replication Effect
  • Progress to Impact
  • Main Findings, Conclusions, Recommendations & Lessons
  • Main Findings
  • Conclusions
  • Recommendations
  • Lessons Learned
  • Annexes
  • TE ToR (excluding ToR annexes)
  • TE Mission itinerary
  • List of persons interviewed
  • List of documents reviewed
  • Summary of field visits
  • Evaluation Question Matrix (evaluation criteria with key questions, indicators, sources of data, and methodology)
  • Questionnaire used and summary of results
  • Co-financing tables (if not include in body of report)
  • TE Rating scales
  • Signed Evaluation Consultant Agreement form
  • Signed UNEG Code of Conduct form
  • Signed TE Report Clearance form
  • Annexed in a separate file: TE Audit Trail
  • Annexed in a separate file: relevant terminal GEF Tracking Tool(Capacity Development Scorecard at TE stage)

ToR Annex E: UNEG Code of Conduct for Evaluators

Independence entails the ability to evaluate without undue influence or pressure by any party (including the hiring unit) and providing evaluators with free access to information on the evaluation subject.  Independence provides legitimacy to and ensures an objective perspective on evaluations. An independent evaluation reduces the potential for conflicts of interest which might arise with self-reported ratings by those involved in the management of the project being evaluated.  Independence is one of ten general principles for evaluations (together with internationally agreed principles, goals and targets: utility, credibility, impartiality, ethics, transparency, human rights and gender equality, national evaluation capacities, and professionalism).

ToR Annex H: TE Audit Trail

The following is a template for the TE Team to show how the received comments on the draft TE report have (or have not) been incorporated into the final TE report. This Audit Trail should be listed as an annex in the final TE report but not attached to the report file. 

To the comments received on(date)from the Terminal Evaluation of (project name) (UNDP Project PIMS #)

Competencies

Experience (For the International Evaluator):

  • Relevant experience with results-based management evaluation methodologies;
  • Experience applying SMART indicators and reconstructing or validating baseline scenarios;
  • Experience in evaluating projects;
  • Competence in adaptive management
  • Experience working in the Arab region countries (RBAS) is an asset.
  • Experience in relevant technical areas related to multilateral environmental agreements for at least 10 years;
  • Demonstrated understanding of issues related to gender and GEF Multiple focal area; experience in gender responsive evaluation and analysis;
  • Excellent communication skills;
  • Demonstrable analytical skills;
  • Project evaluation/review experience within United Nations system will be considered an asset;

Language

  • Fluency in written and spoken English. Fluency in Arabic language is an asset

Required Skills and Experience

Education (For both the national and international evaluators):

  • Advanced degree in (Science, Natural Resources, Environmental Science/Studies ) or other closely related field;

To Review the TOR and Offerors Letter please go through the link below:-

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1XfhPFBhATH0WLlw1MfYotHDp7LcDubiR/editusp=sharing&ouid=102444831886032845295&rtpof=true&sd=true

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1tcDeIGGCo7aQLvX7vmno702L3RHycOWr/editusp=sharing&ouid=102444831886032845295&rtpof=true&sd=true


POSITION TYPE

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EXPERIENCE-LEVEL

DEGREE REQUIRED