Consultant - Design of Dignity Measurement Methodology of the Girl Child, UNICEF Regional Office for South Asia
The subject of measuring dignity and esteem requires specialized experience in that field. There is no one in ROSA with that experience. Consequently an external consultant is required. The low status of girls in particular is a prominent phenomenon in much of South Asia. It is based on a belief that girls are not as valuable as boys and that they are not as worthy of care and support. The low dignity of the girl child is a major contributing factor to pre-natal sex-selective abortion, child marriage, sexual violence against girls, deprivations in education and nutrition, and exclusion and discrimination in general. Societies, communities, and families will not change these negative practices unless they sincerely believe in the dignity of the girl child.
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Human motivation to sustain or change behavior is often based on concepts of individual and group dignity. Dignity refers to how persons are seen by themselves and others as deserving care and consideration due to their inherent and earned traits. Dignity is linked to related terms like worth, value, respect, esteem or honor. Persons or groups that are thought to be without dignity or of low dignity are frequently persecuted or otherwise denied their rights. Persons who perceive themselves to be of low dignity may set themselves apart or accept discrimination. Dignity is a gateway to status, respect and success or, alternately, to marginalization, shame, and lost potential.
The low status of girls in particular is a prominent phenomenon in much of South Asia. It is based on a belief that girls are not as valuable as boys and that they are not as worthy of care and support. The low dignity of the girl child is a major contributing factor to pre-natal sex-selective abortion, child marriage, sexual violence against girls, deprivations in education and nutrition, and exclusion and discrimination in general. Societies, communities, and families will not change these negative practices unless they sincerely believe in the dignity of the girl child.
Projects or campaigns or other attempts to increase the dignity accorded the girl child must know how to target their efforts and if they are working. They need evidence like any other intervention. This requires that there be valid methods to measure dignity. Despite the acceptance of dignity as a major factor, there is at present no compendium of methods that help researchers and evaluators measure dignity or to causally associate it with negative or positive outcomes. Nonetheless it is known that methods do exist around dignity and related concepts. They can be collated. The assignment is to locate and summarize those methods, and to create a reference library of techniques that can be employed when dignity must be measured.
The subject of measuring dignity and esteem requires specialized experience in that field. There is no one in ROSA with that experience. Consequently an external consultant is required.
The methods to be collected will allow researchers to perform any of the following:
- To obtain direct measures (i.e. self-reported) from individuals about their perceptions of their own dignity or status, and to describe how this affects their own behavior and life planning.
- To obtain direct measures (i.e. self-reported) from individuals about their perceptions of the dignity of other groups.
- To elicit perceptions of dignity by individuals and/or small groups through the use of exercises [e.g. household budget expenditures, role plays, forced choices etc] that reveal direct or latent views of dignity.
- To locate within socio-economic statistics indications of unjustified differential treatments of boys versus girls that can then be subject to follow up investigation to see if dignity is a contributing factor (e.g. care seeking behavior for sick children that privileges boys)
- To locate and summarize direct and revealed views about dignity in the mass media and on social media platforms.
Note: Methods applicable to all age groups is sought. Methods that can be employed with elementary age children will be especially welcome.
- Potential methods to be identified via a literature search in public domain data bases such as those maintained by universities and development organizations. Access will be provided by UNICEF for paywall protected subscription data bases (e.g. EBSCO)
- Based on the initial search for material and key informant discussions, an analytic framework will be agreed on. This to include definitions of dignity and related terms, and to precisely define the range of methods to be sought [I.e. refine what is stated in the purpose above].
- ‘Grey’ material of relevance—i.e. unpublished items—to be located and used as appropriate. UNICEF to facilitate contact with organizations and ask them to look for their ‘grey’ material.
- Leading practitioners in program or research fields that require that dignity be measured to be located. Key informant interviews with a representative few to be conducted.
- Relevant material to be summarized and analyzed as described in the deliverables.
Note #1: In the event of abundant material, preference to be given to that which originates in or describes South Asia
Note #2: Only English language material is required to meet the tasks of the assignment. If the consultant has the capacity to locate and summarize information in any other language—especially those of other UN official languages or of any major South Asia language--they may do so as long as the English material is completely covered first.
- Inception Report: A 5-6 page report on the results of initial scoping. To include an analysis of how Dignity is defined, a refinement of the Scope of the exercise, a description of the kinds of materials observed to be present, as well as a plan for completing the assignment.
- An archive of methods. The archive to exist virtually, i.e. simply aggregate in one place the examples identified. Basic cataloguing information will be registered for each in a consolidated Excel/data base file.
- Methods write-ups. For each of the 20 most relevant methods, a 1-1.5 page synopsis will discuss the method’s utility and technique, and link to examples. If there are more than 20 methods found, then additional write ups for the less relevant items will be in the half page range.
- Overview/Final Report. A 3-5 page summary will indicate where there is ample methodological guidance, where there are remaining gaps.
Consultant works from home and provides own computer with relevant Office software. No upfront expenses to be needed by the consultant as UNICEF to ensure access behind paywall protected sites.
Required Qualifications and Competencies:
Education: Master’s degree minimum, in any social science field required.
Sociological/psychological/social psychology training, in particular with demonstrated understanding of dignity and related concepts, required
At least 7 years’ experience in evaluation or research, including at least two assignments that closely relate to the theme of Dignity.
At least 2 of the 7 years’ experience to have related to or occurred in developing nations.
- Sociological research or evaluation methods expertise--required
- Strong gender research abilities—required
- Ability to search data bases for relevant material; knowledge of effective search procedures in global data bases—required
- Familiarity with social-developmental programming related to girls and women in South Asia--an advantage
Excellence in written and spoken English
1st September to 30th October (maximum 30 working days)
Note: Please quote your daily rate and other cost estimates while submitting the application. Application without daily rate, etc. will not be entertained.
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