Consultant for Mid-Term Review of project Sustainable Management of Marine and Coastal Ecosystem Services

United Nations Environment Programme (UN Environment)
Home-Based / Remote
Position Type: 
Consultancy
Organization Type: 
International Organization
Experience Level: 
Senior (10+ Years)
Degree Required: 
Bachelor's (Or Equivalent)

EXPIRED

Please note: this job post has expired! To the best of our knowledge, this job is no longer available and this page remains here for archival purposes only.

Result of Service

• Inception Report: containing confirmation of the results framework and Theory of Change of the project, project stakeholder analysis, review framework and a tentative review schedule.

• Preliminary Findings Note: typically, in the form of a powerpoint presentation, the sharing of preliminary findings is intended to support the participation of the project team, act as a means to ensure all information sources have been accessed and provide an opportunity to verify emerging findings.

• Draft and Final Review Reports: containing an Executive Summary that can act as a stand-alone document; detailed analysis of the review findings organised by review criteria and supported with evidence; lessons learned and recommendations and an annotated ratings table.

Work Location

Homebased

 

Expected duration

4-months

Duties and Responsibilities

The United Nations Environment Programme (UN Environment) is the leading global environmental authority that sets the global environmental agenda, promotes the coherent implementation of the environmental dimension of sustainable development within the United Nations system and serves as an authoritative advocate for the global environment". Its mandate is to coordinate the development of environmental policy consensus by keeping the global environment under review and bringing emerging issues to the attention of governments and the international community for action. UN Environment's Ecosystems Division works with international and national partners, providing technical assistance and capacity development for the implementation of environmental policy, and strengthening the environmental management capacity of developing countries and countries with economies in transition. This consultancy post is in UN Environment Programme, Ecosystems Division at Marine and Freshwater Branch, under the direct supervision of the Project Manager.

The aim of this consultancy is to carry out a midterm review of UNEP Project 316.1 Sustainable Management of Marine and Coastal Ecosystem Services.

OBJECTIVE AND SCOPE OF THE MID-TERM REVIEW
Objective of the Review
In line with the UNEP Evaluation Policy and the UNEP Programme Manual , the Mid-Term Review (MTR) is undertaken approximately half-way through project implementation to analyze whether the project is on-track, what problems or challenges the project is encountering, and what corrective actions are required. The MTR will assess project performance to date (in terms of relevance, effectiveness and efficiency), and determine the likelihood of the project achieving its intended outcomes and supporting their sustainability.

Key Review Principles
Review findings and judgements will be based on sound evidence and analysis, clearly documented in the Review Report. Information will be triangulated (i.e. verified from different sources) as far as possible, and when verification is not possible, the single source will be mentioned (whilst anonymity is still protected). Analysis leading to evaluative judgements should always be clearly spelled out.
As this is Review is being undertaken at the mid-point of project implementation, particular attention will be given to identifying implementation challenges and risks to achieving the expected project objectives and sustainability, which will support potential course correction. Possible questions to be considered include:
• Does the TOC properly reflect the project’s intended change process?
• Is the stakeholder analysis still appropriate and adequate to support the project’s ambitions?
• Are results statements in keeping with UNEP definitions (e.g. outcomes are expressed as the uptake or use of outputs)
• Are roles and responsibilities commonly understood and playing out effectively?
• Is the rate of expenditure appropriate for the mid-point?
• Is there an exit strategy in place and are the elements needed for the project’s benefits to be sustained after the project end, being incorporated in the project implementation?
A Mid-Term Review is a formative assessment, which requires that the consultants go beyond the assessment of “what” the project performance is and make a serious effort to provide a deeper understanding of “why” the performance is as it is. This should provide the basis for the lessons that can be drawn from the project at the mid-point and the recommendations that support adaptive management for the remainder of the project.

REVIEW APPROACH, METHODS AND DELIVERABLES

The Mid-Term Review will use a participatory approach whereby key stakeholders are kept informed and consulted throughout the review process. Both quantitative and qualitative evaluation methods will be used as appropriate to determine project achievements against the expected outputs, outcomes and impacts. It is highly recommended that the Review Consultant maintains close communication with the project team and promotes information exchange throughout the review implementation phase in order to increase their (and other stakeholder) ownership of the review findings.

The findings of the Review will be based on the following:
(a) A desk review of:
• Relevant background documentation, inter alia:
• Project Document and Appendices
• Project design documents (including minutes of the project design review meeting at approval); Annual Work Plans and Budgets or equivalent, revisions to the project (Project Document Supplement), the logical framework and its budget;
• Project reports such as six-monthly progress and financial reports, progress reports from collaborating partners, meeting minutes, relevant correspondence etc.;
• Evaluations/Reviews of similar projects.

(b) Interviews (individual or in group) with:
• UNEP Project Manager (PM) and team members;
• Representatives of Implementing Agents and National Governments etc;
• UNEP Fund Management Officer (FMO);
• Representatives from civil society and specialist groups (such as women’s, farmers and trade associations etc).

(c) Other data collection tools: If needed, to be decided by the Review Consultant at the inception phase

The Review Consultant will prepare:
• Inception Report: (Annex 3 will be provided for guidance on structure and content) containing confirmation of the results framework and Theory of Change of the project, project stakeholder analysis, review framework and a tentative review schedule.

• Preliminary Findings Note: typically, in the form of a powerpoint presentation, the sharing of preliminary findings is intended to support the participation of the project team, act as a means to ensure all information sources have been accessed and provide an opportunity to verify emerging findings.

• Draft and Final Review Reports: (Annex 4 will be provided for guidance on structure and content) containing an Executive Summary that can act as a stand-alone document; detailed analysis of the review findings organised by review criteria and supported with evidence; lessons learned and recommendations and an annotated ratings table.

Review of the draft Review Report. The Review Consultant will submit a draft report to the Project Manager and revise the draft in response to their comments and suggestions. Once a draft of adequate quality has been peer-reviewed and accepted, the Project Manager will share the cleared draft report with key project stakeholders for their review and comments. Stakeholders may provide feedback on any errors of fact and may highlight the significance of such errors in any conclusions as well as providing feedback on the proposed recommendations and lessons. Any comments or responses to draft reports will be sent to the Project Manager for consolidation. The Project Manager will provide all comments to the Review Consultant for consideration in preparing the final report, along with guidance on areas of contradiction or issues requiring an institutional response.

At the end of the review process and based on the findings in the Review Report, the Project Manager will either circulate Lessons Learned or prepare a Recommendations Implementation Plan in the format of a table, to be completed and updated at regular intervals.

Qualifications/special skills

Academic Qualifications: a university degree in environmental sciences, international development or other relevant political or social sciences area is required and an advanced degree in the same areas is desirable
Experience: a minimum of 10 years of technical / evaluation experience is required, preferably including evaluating large, regional or global programmes and using a Theory of Change approach; and a good/broad understanding of marine and coastal ecosystem management is desired
Language: English and French are the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat. For this consultancy, fluency in oral and written English is a requirement. Working knowledge of the UN system and specifically the work of UNEP is an added advantage