International Consultant to conduct a mid-term review of the UN Women Project “Enhancing Access to Justice for Women in Asia and the Pacific: Bridging the gap between formal and informal systems through women’s empowerment.”
UN Women is the United Nations entity dedicated to gender equality and the empowerment of women. A global champion for women and girls, UN Women was established to accelerate progress on meeting their needs worldwide. UN Women supports the UN Member States as they set global standards for achieving gender equality and works with governments and civil society to design laws, policies, programmes and services needed to ensure that the standards are effectively implemented and truly benefit women and girls worldwide. It works globally to make the vision of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) a reality for women and girls and stands behind women’s equal participation in all aspects of life, focusing on four strategic priorities: (i) Women lead, participate in and benefit equally from governance systems; (ii) Women have income security, decent work and economic autonomy; (iii) All women and girls live a life free from all forms of violence; and (iv) Women and girls contribute to and have greater influence in building sustainable peace and resilience, and benefit equally from the prevention of natural disasters and conflicts and humanitarian action.
The Project “Enhancing Access to Justice for Women in Asia and the Pacific: Bridging the gap between formal and informal systems through women’s empowerment and reduction of gender biases” is a five-year programme that began implementation in 2018, thanks to the generous support of the Government of Sweden. The overall goal of the project is to enhance access to justice for women in formal and informal systems in Asia and the Pacific, bridging the gap between these systems through women’s empowerment and reduction of gender biases. In realizing this goal, the programme partners – UN Women, the International Commission of Jurists (ICJ) and the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights both the regional offices of South East Asia and the Pacific (OHCHR) – focus on achieving the following outputs: (1) Domestic laws adopted and court decisions are consistent with international human rights law and standards, including CEDAW; (2) Gender discriminatory attitudes and stereotyped behaviours towards women by formal and informal justice providers are addressed; and (3) Grassroots women’s organizations and community-based women’s organizations are empowered and well-positioned to document, monitor, liaise and facilitate interactions with formal and informal justice providers.
In this context, UN Women Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific will hire a consultant International Consultant to conduct a mid-term review of the UN Women Project” Enhancing Access to Justice for Women in Asia and the Pacific: Bridging the gap between formal and informal systems through women’s empowerment.
The mid-term review (MTR) will take place during the 3rd year of the Project implementation and aims to inform the future direction of the Project as well as new access to justice programming in selected countries. The recommendation resulting from the MTR shall be utilized for improving project implementation and identify the lessons learn and good practices for the Project to grow and adapt accordingly to achieve the intended results. The MTR shall also identify the shifting justice environment due to the impact of the COVID pandemic. In this respective, the review will be used for both accountability and learning purposes, as well as contributing to inform future decision-making.
The target audience of the evaluation will be the UN Women project management, the partner organizations OHCHR and ICJ, the UN Women country offices, the donor of the Project, other donors interested in UN Women’s portfolio.
Duties and Responsibilities
Roles and responsibility
The MTR shall focus on the effective implementation of the Women’s Access to Justice Project, establish the level of progress and impact, evaluate how Project adjustments due to the COVID-19 crisis reached rights holders and supported duty-bearers. Considering the mandates to incorporate human rights and gender equality in all UN work and the UN Women Evaluation Policy, which promotes the integration of women’s rights and gender equality principles, the mid-term review will pay specific attention to these dimensions.
The overall objectives of the MTR are to:
- Analyze how a Human Rights Approach and gender equality principles are integrated into the interventions.
- Assess the relevance of Project measures taken to address the COVID pandemic impact on Women’s Access to Justice.
- Assess the effectiveness and organizational efficiency in achieving expected results, including the effectiveness of programming strategies in implementing global commitments (OHCHR, ICJ and UN Women). The review should also investigate the contextual factors that are enabling or restricting the achievement of results, including financial management and human resource investment.
- Assess the initial impact of the intervention on the lives of beneficiaries, communities, and institutions involved in the Project.
- Assess the potential sustainability of the interventions to advance women’s access to justice.
- Review the UN Women country portfolios of existing and new potential priority countries to strengthen a coordinated approach to Women’s Access to Justice (WA2J).
- Assess the added value of existing partnerships, evaluate the effectiveness of current inter-agency partnerships and identify potential allies to strengthen WA2J.
- Assess the effectiveness and gaps in the Project communication efforts.
Key MTR Questions
The following draft review questions serve as a first reference point for the inquiry. The specific MTR questions, performance criteria and relevant evaluation instruments will be determined during the inception stage and in close consultation with the Project team (UN Women, ICJ and OHCHR)
- To what extent is the intervention relevant to the needs and priorities as defined by beneficiaries?
- To what extent does the Project address the major obstacles to WA2J at the country and community level?
- To what extent does the Project impact policy and legislative developments.
- To what extent are the interventions relevant to beneficiaries to respond to the new challenges, including the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic and political landscape?
- What changed in the lives of the beneficiaries (both direct and indirect beneficiaries)? (Assess scenarios before and after the Project).
- What have been the capacities (technical, administrative, HR and advocacy skills) of the Project management structure to deliver the Project objectives and how could they be strengthened to improve the impact?
- What are the social changes the intervention contributed to at community level? (Attitudes, behavior, knowledge, socio-cultural practices & norms related to gender equality)
- What institutional changes did the intervention achieve in the partner organizations?
- How did the Project change the understanding of women’s rights and WA2J within selected communities, individuals, justice, and service providers?
Contribution to the Intended Outcomes and Impacts
- To what extent has the intervention achieved, or is expected to achieve, its objectives, and its results, including any differential results across groups?
- What are the enabling and limiting factors that are contributing to the achievement of results and what actions need to be taken to overcome any barriers that may limit the progress?
- To what extent do the activities contribute to the intended outputs and outcomes and how did the Project partners contribute towards them? Is there an area for improvement? If so, how can the Project team improve?
- To what extent has the intervention delivered results in an economic and timely way?
- How compatible has the Project been with other interventions in the region where it is being implemented?
- To what extent was capacity developed to ensure the sustainability of efforts and benefits?
- What are the contextual factors for sustaining and replicating the Project interventions and their impact at a national and regional level? To what extent have civil society organizations and women´s organizations be consulted and are committed to promoting WA2J?
- To what extend did the Project enhance the capacity of stakeholders to effectively implement WA2J interventions?
- To what extent have Government Partners committed to advancing women’s access to justice?
- What are areas for improvement or what could be done better in future interventions?
Human Rights approach, gender equality principles and intentionality
- To what extent has and human rights considerations been integrated into the programme design and implementation?
- How has attention to/integration of gender equality and human rights concerns advanced the area of work?
- To what extend were marginalized groups involved in the Project? What approach was used to ensure that minority groups are integrated and empowered?
- Has the Project contributed to poverty reduction? Who (de facto) has benefited from the Project in the short- and the long run, directly or indirectly? Which dimensions of poverty were addressed by the Project?
- Has the Project been implemented in accordance with the poor people’s perspective and a human rights-based approach? To what extend were marginalized groups involved in the Project? What approach was used to ensure that minority groups are integrated and empowered? For example, have target groups been participating in project planning, implementation and follow up? Have the priorities of people living in poverty been reflected in project planning and implementation? Has the Project been implemented transparently? Are there accountability mechanisms in the Project?
- How has attention to/integration of gender equality and human rights concerns advanced the area of work?
- Has the Project been implemented in a conflict-sensitive manner?
- Could environment considerations have been improved in planning, implementation or follow up?
- What is the level of engagement between the partners and key stakeholders at all levels and the ability to leverage the partnership process to inform the advocacy strategy?
- How has the Project enabled the WA2J team to develop a position of knowledge holders and agents of transformation regarding WA2J?
- What is the value addition of UN Women in terms of the resources oversight and technical support?
Monitoring, Evaluation and Knowledge Management
- Is there a need to improve the Monitoring & Evaluation Framework including logical frame indicators, tools and processes used to monitor and report activities, outputs?
- To what extent has lessons learned from what works well and less well been used to improve and adjust the Project implementation?
- Is the knowledge produced by the Project sufficiently used, published and disseminated?
- Which are potential good practices, challenges and lessons from the interventions and recommendations to improve project strategies in the remaining implementation period?
- Is the donor visibility satisfactory?
Scope of the MTR
The scope of the evaluation is cross-national with a focus on 7 priority countries (Timor-Leste, Nepal, Sri-Lanka, Indonesia, Solomon Islands, Fiji, and the Philippines) and 3-5 countries that might potentially be integrated into the regional Project (The selection of the countries will be conducted after the inception report, currently proposed are Cambodia, Bangladesh, Thailand, Papua New Guinea, Samoa). The MTR shall also include the regional dimensions of the Project. It will assess the implementation from June 2018 to June 2021. To identify and assess the effectiveness of project links with other thematic areas, the evaluation scope includes also other impact areas addressed by the partner organizations (UN Women, ICJ and OHCHR). In addition, the review is expected to shed light on key relevant issues and emerging Project risks.
The MTR methodology will be developed by the Consultants and presented for approval to the Project management team. The methodology should use a combination of quantitative and qualitative research methods that are appropriate to address the main MTR questions and account for the complexity of gender relations and ensure participatory and inclusive processes that are culturally appropriate. These methods should be responsive to human rights and gender equality principles and facilitate the engagement of key stakeholders. Measures will be taken to ensure the quality, reliability and validity of data and data collection tools. Limitations with respect to the sample (representativeness) should be stated clearly.
Data and information collection will be undertaken through desk reviews, consultations with partner and individual key informant, interviews, reports prepared during the course of missions, and focal group discussions with representatives of relevant government institutions (duty bearers), development partners, beneficiaries (right holders) and key community players seeking to address gender equality and human rights issues. Data collection methods such as appreciative inquiry, most significant change, case study, survey could also be implemented.
Due to the current COVID-19 context, the review will be conducted virtually, supported by the regional project team, country focal points and national consultants assigned to the MTR.
Contract period and work location
- From 1 July 2021 – 20 November 2021. The consultant will be home-based.
· Initial consultation with regional Project management team (UN Women, ICJ, OHCHR and SIDA)
· Desk review, data collection and initial consultation with Project country staff members.
· Finalized MTR methodology
· Inception report and proposed MTR methodology (including the scope of the review, methodology for data collection and review work plan.)
30 July 2021
· Stakeholder analysis, partner consultations/ relevant stakeholders’ interviews in Project priority countries and selected additional, potential new project countries.
· Draft MTR report
8 October 2021
• Data and information analysis and follow up interviews.
• Validation consultation with the Project team.
• Finalization of MTR report with specific recommendations to shape future women’s access to justice programming and the identification of potential additional priority countries.
· Final MTR report
8 November 2021
- Respect for Diversity.
- Awareness and Sensitivity Regarding Gender Issues.
- Creative Problem Solving.
- Effective Communication.
- Inclusive Collaboration.
- Stakeholder Engagement.
- Leading by Example.
- Knowledge of Women’s Access to Justice, Human Rights and Gender equality
- Ability to pragmatically apply in-depth knowledge and experience of issues and practices in the fields of judiciary systems; legal reform; gender equality,
- Strong skills and experience in presenting evidence and ideas for policy and programme.
- Consistently approaches work with energy and a positive, constructive attitude.
- Demonstrates openness to change and ability to manage complexities.
- Strong communications skills (written and oral)
- Demonstrated experience in gender, legal and development-related research.
- Leadership and skills to work with autonomy and initiative.
- Knowledge of gender equality and women’s human rights in the Asia-Pacific region.
- Strong knowledge of the UN system.
Required Skills and Experience
Required Skills and Qualifications
- Post-Graduate degree (Masters) in law, development studies, gender studies or other related fields.
- A strong record (minimum 7 years) in designing and leading evaluations and reviews including in gender, justice and RoL fields.
- At least 5 years of work experience with a focus on Women’s Human Rights preferable in the Asia-Pacific region.
- Extensive knowledge of Women’s Access to Justice is a strong asset.
- Experience with remote/virtual methods and data collection and stakeholder’s engagement.
- Proven knowledge of Results-Based Management, and a Human Rights Approach.
- Excellent analytical skills and prior experience in both quantitative and qualitative data analysis.
- Proficiency in English writing skill.
Each payment will be issued upon acceptance and approval of a monthly delivery report showing progress on deliverables stipulated in the table below by the Programme Specialist - Access to Justice - Governance, Peace and Security, ROAP. The expected deliverables will be done in close collaboration/supervision of UN Women personnel. Payments will be made in 12 installments.
Applications will be evaluated based on the cumulative analysis.
- Technical Qualification (100 points) weight; [70%]
- Financial Proposal (100 points) weight; [30%]
A two-stage procedure is utilised in evaluating the applications, with evaluation of the technical application being completed prior to any price proposal being compared. Only the price proposal of the candidates who passed the minimum technical score of 70% of the obtainable score of 100 points in the technical qualification evaluation will be evaluated.
Technical qualification evaluation criteria:
The total number of points allocated for the technical qualification component is 100. The technical qualification of the individual is evaluated based on following technical qualification evaluation criteria:
Technical Evaluation Criteria
B) Experience and knowledge
C) Language and report writing skills
Total Obtainable Score
Only the candidates who have attained a minimum of 70% of total points will be considered as technically qualified candidates who may be contacted for validation interview.
Submission of application
Submission package includes:
- Updated CV, P11 form Personal History Form (P11)
- Financial proposal
- A cover letter with a brief presentation of your consultancy explaining your suitability for the work.
- Writing sample or links to access the portfolio of the work.
1.Lump Sum fee (equivalent to daily fee x no. of days)
2. Other (please provide details as applicable)
Total Financial Proposal