Environment Assessment: Needs and Gaps Study Consultant

United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)

Nairobi, , KE


  1. After 25 years of armed conflict and violence in Somalia, most of the government institutions and infrastructure have been destroyed. The environment has been neglected and greatly damaged. The country’s current environmental situation reflects a continuing crisis due to the absence of a strong governance structures and institutions, a regulatory and legislative framework and inspectorate and monitoring systems.

Over the last 10 years no significant environmental assessment has been conducted to document the state of the Somali ecosystems, habitats and human and animal health. The mounting environmental challenges are not only a threat to public health but also indicate progressive environmental contamination, destruction of biodiversity/ecosystems, and loss of beaches and coral reefs.

In Somalia, the effects of climate change, increased population pressure, natural resource based conflicts, increased urbanization, lack of economic opportunities, unemployment and the effects of decreasing remittances – are all likely to impose further pressures on the environment. Degradation of catchments, range areas, agricultural lands and the marine environment, are also critical issues to address.

The environment is the foundation for sustainable development in Somalia, and underpins livelihood plans and strategies. With respect to the socio-economic development of Somalia, the environmental goods and services need to be appreciated (economically, socially, and politically) for the true values they provide to society (family, local, national, international).

Environmental issues are multi-sectoral and impact on all aspects of life, and call for “mainstreaming”. The development of, and agreement to environmental management plans and green indicators at all sectoral levels is an imperative and could be linked to poverty reduction plans, as a basis for resource prioritization, allocation, and programme implementation and reporting.

UNEP was requested by Somalia’s Office of Environment in the Office of the Prime Minister to conduct a Post-Conflict Environmental Assessment (PCEA). The PCEA will be both backward as well as forwarding looking. It will assess how the conflict directly and indirectly damaged the environment and the natural resource base. At the same time, the PCEA will also help the Government, development partners, the private sector, civil society and the Somali public in identifying how the natural resources can contribute to sustainable economic development and peacebuilding while avoiding new social and environmental risks from poor resource governance and insufficient safeguards.

This desk review (and study) is the first step in this process. It examines the history of Somalia’s conflict and traces the development of its political economy over time by narrowing in on main natural resource sectors that have contributed to conflict as well as underpinned its development. It will further look at any relevant information on current environmental situation in the country. The study will assess the state of governance of key natural resource and environment sectors, examine the current capacity to carry out good governance, as well as identify the opportunities for peacebuilding and sustainable development from natural resources.

Number of environmental studies/reports on Somalia are available on open access platforms (mainly the internet), and more than three dozen works have been published in various forms. In 2006, UNEP Regional Office for Africa (ROA) worked closely with the UNEP Post-Conflict Assessment Unit in Geneva to implement post-conflict needs assessment activities in Africa, provide rapid analysis of environmental conditions in areas affected by conflicts and identify short and long term needs. UNEP also participated in the Joint Needs Assessment (JNA) in Somalia, co-led by the World Bank and the United Nations. The purpose of the JNA was to develop a needs assessment report for the period 2006 – 2011. The objective was to provide a comprehensive analysis of the critical needs, while ensuring that the resulting Reconstruction and Development Programme can be funded and implemented. UNEP was the focal point for the environment within cluster 5 (Productive sectors and the environment). In addition, UNEP was to ensure that environmental considerations were adequately reflected in other cluster reports.

Other main organizations that have prepared and published these resources include UNDP, World Bank, European Commission, Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (IGAD), FAO, World Vision, Oxfam, CARE, ADESO and USAID.  There have also been a number of scholarly works that cover different environmental themes.

Duties and Responsibilities

The Federal Government of Somalia (FGS), UNEP, and UNDP are jointly seeking the services of an international consultant to carry out a desk review (secondary data collection) and study to extract/extrapolate relevant information from published documents on main areas of environment and natural resources over the last 10 years. These will include annual reports and communications from UN agencies, development and research organisations.

The review will identify the specific needs and gaps to be used as an input to define the scope of the Post Conflict Environmental Assessment (PCEA) for Somalia.

The Consultant’s specific tasks are as follows:

  • Conduct a comprehensive review of available reports on the environmental situation in Somalia in the last 20 years;
  • Conduct a comprehensive review of the available reports on the issues relating to natural resources management and degradation in Somalia;
  • Review the current institutional arrangement for environmental and natural resources governance in Somalia;
  • Review studies and reports which deals with natural resources and conflict linkages in Somalia;
  • Review studies and reports which deals with the impact of climate change on Somalia, including future scenarios;
  • Identify key segments of the environment which have been impacted by the conflict or are key to the peacebuilding process;
  • Explore ways and means for the creation of environment information resource center in the Environment Office, Office of the Prime Minister;
  • To prepare a desk study which documents the findings from the above review and presents recommendations for the Post Conflict Environmental Assessment (PCEA).

The two underlying principles to be considered in the assessment relating to environment and natural resources are:

  • Protection of the human population from the effects of adverse environmental risk factors;
  • Protection of the environment from the potentially damaging effects of human activities and the overall improvement of the environment for the benefit of human health, well-being and development.

Corporate Competencies:

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

Functional Competencies:

  • Technical Expertise in environment or natural resources management;
  • Experience in conducting desk-based and field research, and writing and submitting reports of a high technical standard;
  • Knowledge of Results Based Management concepts and tools.

Knowledge and Learning Management:

  • Shares knowledge and experience across partners;
  • Encourages colleagues to share knowledge.

Coordination Effectiveness:

  • Ability to build and sustain effective partnerships within Government entities, UN Agencies and main constituents;
  • Ability to advocate effectively, communicate sensitively across different constituencies.

Communication and Information Sharing:

  • Speaks and writes clearly and effectively; listens to others, correctly interprets messages from others and responds appropriately; asks questions to clarify, and exhibits interest in having two-way communication; tailor’s language, tone, style and format to match the audience; demonstrates openness in sharing information and keeping people informed;
  • Facilitate and encourage open communication and strive for effective communication.


  • Demonstrates consistency in upholding and promoting the values of UNDP inn action and decisions, in line with the UN Code of Conduct.

Core Values and Ethics:

  • Demonstrate cultural sensitivity and able to work in a multi-national environment;
  • Support the Organisation’s corporate goal;
  • Comply with UNDP policies, regulations and code of conduct and integrity.


  • Demonstrate ability to work in a multicultural, multi ethnic environment and to maintain effective working relations with people of different national and cultural backgrounds;
  • Build effective client relationship and partnerships;
  • Interact with all levels of staff in the organization;
  • Excellent interpersonal skills;
  • Build and share knowledge;
  • Make valuable practice contributions.

Self-management and Emotional Intelligence:

  • Stay composed and positive even in difficult situations, handle tense situations with diplomacy and tact, and have a consistent behaviour towards others.
Required Skills and Experience


  • Master degree (or equivalent) in environment or natural resources management.


  • Atleast 9 years of proven experience in environment or natural resources;
  • Proven experience in conducting desk-based and field research, and writing and submitting reports of a high technical standard;
  • Previous working experience in Somalia, especially with government officials and academics, is desirable.


  • Fluency in English.