Consultancy: Assessment of WASH Enabling Environment (EE) in the East Asia and Pacific Region

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Job Number: 504203 | Vacancy Link
Location: Thailand
Work Type : Consultancy

If you are a committed, creative professional and are passionate about making a lasting difference for children, the world’s leading children’s rights organization would like to hear from you.

For 70 years, UNICEF has been working on the ground in 190 countries and territories to promote children’s survival, protection and development. The world’s largest provider of vaccines for developing countries, UNICEF supports child health and nutrition, good water and sanitation, quality basic education for all boys and girls, and the protection of children from violence, exploitation, and AIDS. UNICEF is funded entirely by the voluntary contributions of individuals, businesses, foundations and governments.

In its recent WASH EE Guidance Note[1], WASH Enabling Environment (EE) is defined as a set of interrelated functions that creates necessary conditions for a country to be able to deliver sustainable WASH services (toward WASH SDGs) and is structured around the following 9 key governance factors: i) Sector Policy and Strategy, ii) Sector Coordination, iii) Service Delivery Arrangements, iv) Regulation and Accountability, v) Sector Planning, vi) Sector Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning, vii) sector Budgeting, viii) sector Financing,  ix) Sector Capacity Development. UNICEF East Asia and Pacific Regional Office is seeking an individual consultant to carry out a thorough review of the WASH sector in UNICEF supported countries in the East Asia Pacific region in line with UNICEF Guidance Note on Strengthening the Enabling Environment in WASH and the SWA collaborative Behaviors and Building Blocks including  testing the Theory of Change in the EE Guidance note and providing country benchmarks on WASH Enabling Environment in each of the Enabling Environment Functions and Factors.  The assignment will also provide documentation of countries best practices in the EE areas to reach scale, equity and sustainability of WASH services in the region.


Current globally recognized figures indicate that 650 million people lack access to safe water and a staggering 2.3 billion people lack access to improved sanitation.  Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 6 sets the ambitious target of achieving universal access to water and sanitation for all by 2030. The WHO/UNICEF Joint Monitoring Program for Water Supply and Sanitation (JMP), will continue to track global progress towards SDG targets 6.1 and 6.2.

East Asia and Pacific region[2] remains one of the main drivers of the world economy, accounting for nearly two-fifths of global economic growth. Home to an estimated 2 billion people, the Asia-Pacific region holds over half the global population and over one-quarter of the world’s children – around 580 million children in total.  Many countries in the region have achieved middle income status, with a steady decline in extreme poverty from 80% in 1981 to 4% in 2015 (The World Bank, 2015). Despite these progress, sanitation and hygiene is still a significant contributing factor to high child mortality, under-nutrition and stunting.  Improved sanitation is still unavailable for a significant proportion of households in the East Asia and Pacific Region, and large disparities persist between rural and urban households.

Across the region, an estimated 100 million people still practice open defecation out of which around 52 million people are from Indonesia which is a middle income country and around 14 million people are from China. Some countries like Solomon Islands has as high as 54% of the population practicing open defecation followed by Cambodia with 47% open defecators. This represents a large unfinished development agenda and is a stark manifestation of the persisting and sometimes widening inequities in the region. Many countries still have unacceptably high levels of child stunting with seven countries having a prevalence of over 30 per cent, and two countries with a staggering 50 per cent of children stunted. The poorest and most deprived children are much more stunted than their wealthier and urban peers. An estimated 18 million children under 5 years are affected.

The vision laid out in its Global WASH Strategy 2016 – 2030 and as well as the Headline Results of East Asia and Pacific Regional Office recognizes focus on universal access to safe drinking water, sanitation and hygiene as the cornerstone of child survival and development in a safe and sustainable environment. UNICEF in its new upcoming Strategic Plan 2018-2021 and the new Regional Office Management Plan (ROMP) has identified clean and safe environment as a critical goal in realizing the right of every child and particularly the most vulnerable to survive and thrive.

An increasing important strategy in the region has been around ensuring that favorable Enabling Environment (EE) conditions and national capacity is strengthened for quality WASH services in communities and institutions in 12 countries in the East Asia and Pacific region.

[1] Strengthening Enabling Environment in Water Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH), Guidance note, May 2016

[2] EAP region covers 16 countries including Japan, China, Cambodia, Indonesia, Korea, Lao PDR, Malaysia, Mongolia, Myanmar, Pacific Islands (14 Countries), Papua New Guinea, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Timor Leste and Vietnam.

Work Assignment:

Under the supervision of the Regional WASH Advisor and in close coordination with the regional WASH Specialist, the consultant will:

1. Stock take of global/regional lessons and Examples: This assignment will involve i) a systematic review of the WASH sector in UNICEF supported countries (based on secondary data/information sources) in line with WASH EE Guidance note, SWA Collaborative Behaviors and Building blocks and ii) undertake a more in-depth analysis of WASH EE functions and Factors in eight countries in the region including China, Cambodia, Indonesia, Myanmar, PNG, Philippines, Pacific Islands and Vietnam.

2. Analyze and document adaptability of WASH EE Theory of Change to specific country contexts and develop a WASH EE Benchmarking model – work with respective country teams of UNICEF via email/phones and based on the analysis and country realities, develop a benchmarking model that characterizes country typology and EE performance across the EE factors and functions and SWA Collaborative Behaviors and Building Blocks. This may require travel to at least 6 countries (Cambodia, Myanmar, Pacific Islands, Indonesia, Philippines and Vietnam).

3. Analysis and Documentation :

a. Produce Country Profiles on WASH EE, SWA Collaborative Behaviors and SWA Building Blocks based on country typology and analysis highlighting key successes and critical gaps and a maximum 2 – 4 page advocacy brief per country including EE strengthening action plan per country particularly on Rural and Urban Sanitation sub-sector and WASH in Institutions.

b. A learning note with at least three best case experiences for strengthening EE as a benchmark for the attainment of national goal and SDGs for sharing with large scale audience.

A regional synthesis report (not more than 20 pages) summarizing the country feedback and recommendations on WASH EE benchmarking and strengthening with a power point presentation on WASH EE in the region.

Main Tasks:

1. Inception – Desk/Document Review and Work planning

Task Details: 

  • Develop Inception Report with update of detailed workplan, including finalizing methodology (refinement of research/learning questions and tools, revise the EoI as necessary)
  • Undertake a thorough review of latest (global/regional) documents on WASH Sector EE, and develop a consolidated overview report


  • Revised / agreed updated Inception Report[3]

When: 2 weeks, end May 2017

Main Tasks:

2. Analyze and document adaptability of WASH EE Theory of Change to specific country contexts and Country Benchmarking on EE factors and functions  

Task Details:

  • Undertake field study including consultations with key partners at national / local levels in selected countries (Cambodia, Indonesia, Philippines and possible Vietnam, Pacific Island and Myanmar) and test the TOC for country benchmarking on WASH EE factors and functions


2) Country EE Benchmarks; Country Mission reports

When: 6 weeks, till mid-July 2017

Main Tasks:

3. Analysis and Documentation:

3.1   Country Profiles and Analysis with critical gaps and recommendations for country action plans 

Task Details:

  • Analysis and consolidate findings from desk/document review and country visits
  • Develop the Draft of Country EE Profiles


3) Draft Country profiles with critical gaps and recommendation for country actions plans   

4) Draft Advocacy briefs per country for EE Strengthening

When: 2 weeks, Mid-August 2017

Main Tasks:

a) Documentation of three best cases on EE strengthening

Task Details:

  • Undertake field visits to develop three best cases on WASH EE strengthening efforts


5) Final Country Case Study documents (3x), 15 pages each


2 weeks, end August 2017

Main Tasks:

b. Regional synthesis report with a power point presentation 

Task Details:

  • Final regional synthesis report
  • Develop a PowerPoint presentation plus a draft (6-8)


6) Final country Profiles and

When: 3 weeks, end October 2017

[3] Inception report to detail workplan, methodology, list of references (initial) as well as draft outlines of regional analysis update and country case study documents

Estimated Duration of Contract:  90 working days, starting around mid-May 2017 and completed by November 2017.  

Official Travel: Travel to Bangkok for consultation and guidance, and travel to/from case study countries in agreement with supervisors and partners.

Qualifications or Specialized Knowledge/Experience Required:

  • Master’s Degree in Public Health, Civil Engineering, Public Finance/economics, Institutional Development or related fields;
  • At least 8-10 years of work experience in the areas of sanitation & hygiene, water supply field with demonstrated experience in qualitative and quantitative research and analysis related to WASH is essential;
  • Previous relevant experience in assessment of WASH Enabling Environment to scale up access and quality of WASH services and proven track record of conducting research and producing documentation based on in-depth literature review and field work, proven track record of coordinating between different stakeholders (staff, beneficiaries, officials), demonstrable knowledge of the WASH sector, awareness of gender issues essential;
  • Experience of conducting multi-country research projects;
  • Prior experience of working with UNICEF/in EAP (and/or case countries) and experience in working in East Asia and the Pacific in WASH Sector policies and strategies, financing and sector capacity mapping and strengthening is  an asset;
  • Experience of writing peer reviewed articles is as asset; and
  • Fluency in oral and particularly written English is essential.

Application process: Interested applicants are requested to submit Application Package and Expression of Interest by 3 May 2017 detailing:

  • Qualification and technical capacity (CV/P-11)
  • Sample(s) of relevant work/reports
  • A detailed work plan (outlining milestones with timeframe) and proposed methodology (including plans for any in-country visits and methodology for in-depth country analysis based on secondary data/information)
  • Financial proposal: Daily professional fee in USD. The consultant is requested to submit a travel cost proposal from home base to the regional office in Bangkok (and for the case study countries once the country list is finalized). Please note the air tickets under UNICEF contract shall be re-routable, refundable type (economy class and most direct route). The consultant will be responsible for own travel insurance, visa fee and terminal expenses.

Download File FORM P11.doc

Opening Date Wed Apr 19 2017 23:00:00 GMT-0300 (BRT) SE Asia Standard Time
Closing Date Wed May 03 2017 13:55:00 GMT-0300 (BRT)