UNDP - GEF Midterm Review Lead Consultant cum Environmental Finance Specialist

United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)

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N.B.: This vacancy announcement is extended and in such, the deadline dates noted below will be discussed after the selection.

Project Title:

Enhancing Effectiveness and Financial Sustainability of Protected Areas in Malaysia

Project Description:  

This is the Terms of Reference for the UNDP-GEF Midterm Review (MTR) of the full-sized project titled Enhancing Effectiveness and Financial Sustainability of Protected Areas in Malaysia (PIMS#3967) (also knowns as PA Financing project) implemented by the Department of Wildlife and National Parks in Malaysia, which is to be undertaken in June 2016. The project started on the 5 June 2012 and is in its fifth year of implementation. The project is scheduled to end on 30 June 2019. In line with the UNDP-GEF Guidance on MTRs, this MTR process was initiated before the submission of the fourth Project Implementation Report (PIR). The MTR process must follow the guidance outlined in the document Guidance for Conducting Midterm Reviews of UNDP-Supported, GEF-Financed Projects (see http://web.undp.org/evaluation/documents/guidance/GEF/mid-term/Guidance_Midterm%20Review%20_EN_2014.pdf).

The PA Financing project was designed to address the sub-optimal management and inadequate resources invested in the protected area system in Malaysia with primary focus on the three protected area networks covering a total area of 2.98 million hectares, managed by the Federal Department of Wildlife and National Parks, Johor National Parks Corporation and Perak State Parks Corporation.

The objective of the project is to establish a performance-based financing structure to support effective protected area system management in Malaysia. Interventions to achieve this objective are structured into three outcome components, designed to address barriers at the national, sub-national network and site PA levels respectively:

Outcome 1:  Systemic and institutional capacities to manage and financially support a national PA system by addressing barriers at the national systems level to improve management effectiveness and financial sustainability of protected areas.

Outcome 2:  Technical and institutional capacities to manage sub-national PA networks, including capacities for effective financial management by strengthening the sub-PA network capacity to be able to meet the management standards set under Outcome 1 so as to decrease funding gap of the PA network. 

Outcome 3:  Effective site-level PA management by improving basic PA management capacities where required, and will also enhance the management and business planning skills of PA managers, to enable the PA system to maximize revenue generation and to streamline costs. 

See the signed project document at http://www.my.undp.org/content/malaysia/en/home/operations/projects/environment_and_energy/enhancing-effectiveness-and-financial-sustainability-of-protecte.html.

Duties and Responsibilities

Scope of Work and Key Tasks:

The MTR will assess progress towards the achievement of the project objectives and outcomes as specified in the Project Document and programme outcomes as stipulated in the Country Programme Action Plan (CPAP) 2016 – 2020 between UNDP and the Government of Malaysia, and assess early signs of project success or failure with the purpose 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 MTR must provide evidence based information that is credible, reliable and useful.

The MTR Lead Consultant will perform the key tasks as follows:

  • Lead and assign division of work for a team of two independent experts including National Protected Area Specialist and Social Scientist who will conduct the MTR;
  • Conduct a document review of project documents i.e. Country Programme Action Plan (CPAP) 2016 – 2020 between UNDP and Government of Malaysia, Project Identification Form (PIF), UNDP Initiation Plan, Project Document, Environmental and Social Safeguard Policy (ESSP), Project Inception Report, Project Implementation Reviews, Finalized GEF focal area Tracking Tools, Project Appraisal Committee meeting minutes, Financial and Administration guidelines used by Project Team, project operational guidelines, manuals and systems, etc.; provided by UNDP Malaysia Country Office and Project Team;
  • Plan and facilitate in a MTR inception workshop to clarify their understanding of the objectives and methods of the MTR, producing the MTR inception report thereafter;
  • Conduct field mission with MTR team that consist of interviews with stakeholders who have project responsibilities and site visits to Kuala Lumpur, Taman Negara National Park, Kuantan, Ipoh, Royal Belum State Park, Johor Bahru and Endau-Rompin National Park;
  • Assess the following four categories of project progress based on the Guidance for Conducting Midterm Reviews of UNDP-Supported, GEF-Financed Projects for requirements on ratings. No overall rating is required;
  • Produce a draft and final MTR report with MTR team members;
  • Plan the MTR Concluding Stakeholder Workshop.

Project Strategy

Project Design:

  • Review the problem addressed by the project and the underlying assumptions.  Review the effect of any incorrect assumptions or changes to the context to achieving the project results as outlined in the Project Document;
  • Review the relevance of the project strategy and assess whether it provides the most effective route towards expected/intended results stipulated in the project document/inception report and the CPAP 2016 – 2020;
  • Review how the project addresses country priorities. Review country ownership. Was the project concept in line with the national and sector development priorities and plans in Malaysia?
  • Review decision-making processes: were perspectives of those who would be affected by project decisions, those who could affect the outcomes, and those who could contribute information or other resources to the process, taken into account during project design processes?
  • Review the extent to which relevant gender issues were raised in the project design. See Guidance for Conducting Midterm Reviews of UNDP-Supported, GEF-Financed Projects for further guidelines;
  • If there are major areas of concern, recommend areas for improvement.

Results Framework/Logframe:

  • Undertake a critical analysis of the project’s logframe indicators and targets, assess how “SMART” the midterm and end-of-project targets are (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, Time-bound), and suggest specific amendments/revisions to the targets and indicators as necessary;
  • Examine if progress so far has led to, or could in the future catalyse beneficial development effects (i.e. income generation, gender equality and women’s empowerment, improved governance etc.) that should be included in the project results framework and monitored on an annual basis.

Progress Towards Results:

  • Review the logframe indicators against progress made towards the end-of-project targets; populate the Progress Towards Results Matrix, as described in the Guidance for Conducting Midterm Reviews of UNDP-Supported, GEF-Financed Projects; colour code progress in a “traffic light system” based on the level of progress achieved; assign a rating on progress for the project objective and each outcome; make recommendations from the areas marked as “not on target to be achieved” (red);
  • Compare and analyse the GEF Tracking Tool at the Baseline with the one completed right before the Midterm Review;
  • Identify remaining barriers to achieving the project objective;
  • Review the aspects of the project that have already been successful and identify ways in which the project can further expand these benefits.

Project Implementation and Adaptive Management:

Using the Guidance for Conducting Midterm Reviews of UNDP-Supported, GEF-Financed Projects; assess the following categories of project progress:

  • Management Arrangements;
  • Work Planning;
  • Finance and co-finance;
  • Project-level monitoring and evaluation systems;
  • Stakeholder Engagement particularly local and indigenous communities;
  • Reporting;
  • Communications.


Assess overall risks to sustainability factors of the project in terms of the following four categories:

  • Financial risks to sustainability;
  • Socio-economic risks to sustainability;
  • Institutional framework and governance risks to sustainability;
  • Environmental risks to sustainability.

The MTR Lead Consultant and his/her team will include a section in the MTR report setting out the MTR’s evidence-based conclusions, in light of the findings.

Additionally, the MTR Lead Consultant and his/her team is expected to make recommendations to the Implementing Partners and Project Team. Recommendations should be succinct suggestions for critical intervention that are specific, measurable, achievable, and relevant. A recommendation table should be put in the report’s executive summary. The MTR Lead Consultant and his/her team should make no more than 15 recommendations in total.

Expected Outputs and Deliverables:

The MTR Lead Consultant shall prepare and submit:

  • MTR Inception Report: MTR team clarifies objectives and methods of the Midterm Review no later than 2 weeks before the MTR mission. To be sent to UNDP Malaysia Country Office and project management. Approximate due date: 8 June 2016;
  • Presentation: Initial Findings presented to project management and UNDP Malaysia at the end of the MTR mission. Approximate due date: 24 June 2016;
  • Draft Final Report: Full report with annexes within 3 weeks of the MTR mission. Approximate due date: 15 July 2016;
  • Final Report*: Revised report with annexed audit trail detailing how all received comments have (and have not) been addressed in the final MTR report. To be sent to the UNDP Malaysia within 2 weeks of receiving UNDP and stakeholders’ comments on draft. Approximate due date: 15 August 2016.

*The final MTR report must be in English. If applicable, UNDP Malaysia may choose to arrange for a translation of the report into Malay language – the official language more widely shared by national stakeholders.

E.    Institutional Arrangement

The Commissioning Unit for this project’s MTR is UNDP Malaysia Country Office. UNDP Malaysia will contract the MTR Lead Consultant and ensure the timely provision of per diems and travel arrangements within the country for the MTR team. The Project Team will be responsible for liaising with the MTR team to provide all relevant documents, set up stakeholder interviews, and arrange field visits.

F.     Duration of the Work

The total duration of the MTR will be 50 working days starting 30 May 2016, and shall not exceed six months from when the Lead Consultant is hired. The tentative MTR timeframe is as follows:

  • 13 May 2016: Application closes;
  • 16 May 2016: Selection of MTR Lead Consultant and team members;
  • 23 – 27 May 2016: Prep the MTR Team (handover of project documents);
  • 30 May – 3 June 2016 (5 days): Document review and preparing MTR Inception Report;
  • 6 – 10 June 2016 (5 days): Finalization and Validation of MTR Inception Report- latest start of MTR mission;
  • 12 – 26 June 2016 (15 days): MTR mission: stakeholder meetings, interviews, field visits;
  • 24 June 2016: Mission wrap-up meeting & presentation of initial findings- earliest end of MTR mission;
  • 27 June – 11 July 2016 (15 days): Preparing draft report;
  • 18 – 29 July 2017 (5 days): Incorporating audit trail on draft report/Finalization of MTR report;
  • 1 – 5 August 2016 (3 days): Preparation & Issue of Management Response;
  • 11 August 2016 (2 days): Planning the Concluding Stakeholder Workshop (only MTR National Protected Area Specialist and Social Scientist participate);
  • 31 August 2016: Expected date of full MTR completion.

The start date of contract is 30 May 2016.

G.    Duty Station

All travels within Malaysia will be arranged by UNDP Malaysia and Project Team except international travel from home base to Malaysia. All related travel expenses will be covered and will be reimbursed as per UNDP rules and regulations upon submission of an F-10 claim form and supporting documents.


  • International travel will be required to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia during the MTR mission;
  • The Basic Security in the Field II and Advanced Security in the Field courses must be successfully completed prior to commencement of travel;
  • Individual Consultants are responsible for ensuring they have vaccinations/inoculations when travelling to certain countries, as designated by the UN Medical Director.
  • Consultants are required to comply with the UN security directives set forth under https://dss.un.org/dssweb/
  • Competence in adaptive management, as applied to biodiversity focal area;
  • Excellent communication skills;
  • Demonstrable analytical skills;
Required Skills and Experience


  • A Master’s degree or higher in conservation/environmental finance, economics, environmental or natural resource economics, environmental planning/management, public finance, or other closely related field.


The selection of Lead Consultant will be aimed at maximising the overall “team” qualities in the following areas:

  • Experience with result-based management evaluation methodologies for at least 10 years;
  • Experience applying SMART targets and reconstructing or validating baseline scenarios;
  • Competence in adaptive management, as applied to biodiversity focal area;
  • Experience working with the GEF or GEF-evaluations for at least 5 years;
  • Experience working in Malaysia, South-East Asian or Asia-Pacific region;
  • Work experience in environment and/or conservation finance for at least 10 years;
  • Project evaluation/review experiences within United Nations system will be considered an asset;

Consultant Independence:

The consultants 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.

Application Process:

Scope of Price Proposal and Schedule of Payments

Financial Proposal:

  • Financial proposal must be “all inclusive” and expressed in a lump-sum for the total duration of the contract. The term “all-inclusive” implies all cost (professional fees, domestic travel costs, living allowances etc.);
  • For duty travels, the UN’s Daily Subsistence Allowance (DSA) rates should provide indication of the cost of living in a duty station/destination.
  • The lump sum is fixed regardless of changes in the cost components.

Schedule of Payments:

  • 20% of payment upon approval of the MTR Inception Report;
  • 30% upon submission of the draft MTR Report;
  • 50% upon finalization of the MTR Report.

Or, as otherwise agreed between UNDP Malaysia and MTR Lead Consultant.  

How to Apply:

  • Kindly download the Letter of Confirmation of interest and availability, Financial Proposal Template, P11 form and General Terms & Conditions mentioned below;
  • Completed Letter of Confirmation of Interest and Availability (Annex 1);
  • Personal CV or a P11 Personal History Form,, 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;
  • Read and agree to the General Terms & Conditions;
  • Click the ‘apply’ icon and complete what is required;
  • 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 (Annex 2) that indicates the all-inclusive fixed total contract price, supported by a breakdown of costs, as per template provided.  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. 
  • Scan all documents into 1 pdf folder and then upload;
  • For clarification question, please email to [email protected] The clarification question deadline is three (3) days before the closing. When emailing for clarification questions, please put “MyIC/2016/013″ as the subject matter.

Incomplete applications will be excluded from further consideration.

Forms and General terms & conditions to be downloaded:

  • The UN Personal History Form (P11) is available at:http://www.undp.org.my/uploads/p11%20personal%20history%20form.doc.
  • Letter of Confirmation of Interest and Availability (Annex I) at https://www-author.undp.org/content/malaysia/en/home/operations/procurement.html%23?download 
  • The Financial Proposal Template at http://www.my.undp.org/content/dam/malaysia/docs/Procurement/Financial%20Proposal%20Template.doc?download
  • The General Terms & Conditions for Individual contract is available at:http://www.my.undp.org/content/dam/malaysia/docs/Procurement/General%20Conditions%20of%20Contract%20for%20IC.pdf?download
  • The General Terms & Conditions for Reimbursement Loan Agreement is available at:http://www.my.undp.org/content/dam/malaysia/docs/Procurement/Reimbursable%20Loan%20Agreement%20_%20Terms%20&%20Conditions.pdf?download  

Important Note: 

  • This Consultancy position is only accepted online. Email submission is not valid;
  • Applicant must READ and ACCEPT the General Terms and Conditions; 
  • The system DOES NOT accept multiple document upload. Please scan all the documents and save into one (1) PDF file and upload;

Criteria for Selection of the Best Offer:

The award of the contract will be made to the Individual Consultant who has obtained the highest Combined Score and has accepted UNDP’s General Terms and Conditions. Only those applications which are responsive and compliant will be evaluated. The offers will be evaluated using the “Combined Scoring method” where:

  • The educational background and experience on similar assignments will be weighted a max. of 70%;
  • The price proposal will weigh as 30% of the total scoring.
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.