National Consultant for Support in the Development of New National Youth Strategy
Through the joint UN project Activate!, and other interventions, UNDP is contributing to reducing poverty and social exclusion of the most vulnerable, with a focus on young people, thereby accelerating sustainable human development. Youth in Montenegro face numerous challenges, most prominent being employment, social inclusion, quality education, participation. According to the Statistical Office of Montenegro (MONSTAT) data, the unemployment rate among young people aged 15 to 24 years stood at 25.2% in 2019, only to increase to 36% in 2020, and even to 47.1% in the first quarter of 2021. According to MONSTAT, the share of young people aged 15–29 years who are not in employment, education or training (NEET) for 2020 is 26.6%, which indicates an increase compared to the year 2019 when the percentage stood at 21.3%. Statistics further show that young people have been significantly affected by the economic consequences of the coronavirus pandemic since, in 2021, the percentage of employed young persons was 41.8% lower compared to 2020. The 2021 EC progress report states that the youth remain one of the vulnerable groups regarding employment and that it is necessary to implement effective employment measures specifically focused on this group. Regarding formal education, PISA results suggest that the quality of education and learning outcomes needs to be improved. Students in Montenegro have below-average achievements in reading, math and science – 15-year-olds lag behind their peers from OECD countries by almost two academic years. Socially disadvantaged students are 2.2 times more likely to attend vocational education compared to privileged students. Students in a socio-economically privileged position and girls have better achievement than boys and disadvantaged students.Montenegrin society remains deeply patriarchal, despite its striving for modern-day values. Patriarchal norms such as those relating to gender roles and stereotypes, as well as the non-acceptance of LGBTIQ persons, present an obstacle to equality and respect for diversity. The 2019 Gender Equality Index indicates that women in Montenegro are the least equal when it comes to the dimension of power, followed by the dimensions of time, knowledge, money, and work. If we look at the individual indicators that make up the domain of power and its subdomains (political, economic, and social power), it becomes evident that gender inequality persists and greatly affects young people in Montenegro.
As for participation, young people feel that they lack enough space and opportunities for engagement; they do not perceive their participation as meaningful or that their vote is taken into account, while most of them wish to contribute to community development.
Adolescence, as one of the crucial life periods, recognised as second chance in socio-emotional and cognitive development, is generally not recognised enough in youth development and youth policy. Thus, there are no catered services or support mechanisms for this group, including school-to-work transition, participation, etc.
Consultations with youth confirm the evidence-based findings. The main issues young persons are preoccupied with are – the quality of education and access to the labor market. They emphasize the importance of having opportunities to acquire skills and knowledge through practice and recognized the particular relevance of metacognitive skills, especially having in mind particularly vulnerable groups of young people, as well as contemporary labor market trends and necessary skills. In this sense, the quality of formal and non-formal education was assessed as extremely important. Regarding non-formal education, it was highlighted that it is necessary to provide young people with quality programs enabling them to develop their skills and attitudes outside the formal school system. In this regard, youth work and youth services – the quality and coverage of which need to be improved – have been recognized as relevant. Cross-sectoral cooperation, not only in the part of planning and monitoring of youth policy but also in the part of its implementation, was also underscored as very important. Young persons are also worried about the emigration of young people and suggested urgent interventions in that regard, not only preventive ones but also interventions that foster cooperation and support for innovative projects that can contribute to the development of the country and improve the situation of youth in Montenegro.
Governmental youth policy in Montenegro is implemented by the Law on Youth and national Youth strategy. Ministry of Education, Science, Culture and Sports (MESCS) and Sports and Youth Administration are in charge of the youth policy implementation, in coordination with other relevant institutions at national and local levels. Ministry and Administration implement youth policy through the realisation of national youth strategy, funding of CSO projects focused on youth, support to flagship initiatives such as Youth Benefits Card (EYCA), partnerships with relevant national and international institutions and organisations.
At local level, municipalities implement youth policy through local youth action plans. In cooperation with local self-governments, MESCS and Sports and Youth Administration establishes and supports local youth services (youth clubs/centres), in charge of supporting youth empowerment at local level.
Current Youth Strategy, valid for the period 2017-2021, focuses on several key outcomes contributing to youth economic and social security, access to quality education, active citizenship, health, transition to adulthood, culture and strengthening of institutional framework for youth policy implementation.
The current Strategy comes to an end and the new one is to be developed in 2022. The new strategy will be based on the findings of the evaluation of the current strategy, youth needs` assessment, other available data, as well as consultations with relevant stakeholders.
The process of new Youth Strategy development will be led by Ministry of Education, Science, Culture and Sports (MESCS) and Sports and Youth Administration.
To support the strategy design process, UNDP seeks to recruit national consultant, who will provide support in the overall design process, focusing on strategic planning, adherence to national and international youth policy standards and criteria, and coherent and evidence-based planning process and strategy document.
Duties and Responsibilities
This assignment objective is to support the Youth strategy design process, focusing on strategic planning, adherence to national and international youth policy standards and criteria, and coherent and evidence-based planning process and strategy document.
Under direct supervision of the Project manager, national consultant will ensure implementation of the following tasks:
- In cooperation with MESCS, Sports and Youth Administration and working group, develop a plan of the steps and activities necessary for the Youth strategy design.
- Produce baseline analysis related to the situation of youth in Montenegro, including the overview of relevant national and international promising practices, emerging issues and directions, strategic and legal guidelines and provisions related to youth policy development and implementation.
- Support MESCS, Sports and Youth Administration and working group in strategy design process, by facilitating strategic planning process, ensuring that the governmental strategic planning methodology is applied.
- Support facilitation of intersectoral exchange and coordination during the strategy development process, including advice on addressing intersectoral issues through the Youth Strategy.
- Provide quality draft of the strategy document, based on and including all components of the governmental strategic planning methodology.
Expected results and deliverables:
- Action plan containing the sequenced steps and activities necessary for the Youth strategy design (3 days);
- Baseline analysis related to the situation of youth in Montenegro, including the overview of relevant national and international promising practices, emerging issues and directions, strategic and legal guidelines and provisions related to youth policy development and implementation (10 days);
- Facilitation of strategy design process, ensuring that the governmental strategic planning guidelines are applied, including facilitation of intersectoral exchange and coordination during the strategy development process, including advice on addressing intersectoral issues through the Youth Strategy, and facilitation of any additional consultations deem it to be necessary (20 days);
- Provide quality draft of the strategy document (12 days);
- Conduct at least two presentations of the draft strategy in the scope of the meetings and events/public consultation processes (3 days);
- Prepare a Final report about all the activities undertaken under this assignment (2 days).
National consultant will work in team with the junior national consultant, who will contribute to all deliverables, especially drafting of the youth situation analysis and drafting of the strategy document.
Also, consultant will be provided with several inputs for situation analysis, such as current strategy evaluation report, youth needs` assessment, various youth consultations reports, and other evidence/reports/analysis. The consultant is expected to use these data and information, as well as other public data/analysis/reports.
Timing and reporting:
The Consultants will be engaged under Individual Contract (IC) for 50 days, from end January to 20th July 2022. The consultants will work in Podgorica and from home, including local travel if necessary.
- Displays cultural, gender, religion, race, nationality and age sensitivity and adaptability;
- Demonstrates integrity by modelling the UN’s values and ethical standards
- Shares knowledge and experience;
- Builds strong relationships with clients, focuses on impact and result for the client and responds positively to feedback;
- Demonstrates good oral and written communication skills;
- Consistently approaches work with energy and a positive, constructive attitude;
- Demonstrates ability to manage complexities and work under pressure, as well as conflict resolution skills.
- Excellent analytical and writing skills;
- Excellent interpersonal and communication skills and ability to operate under pressure.
Required Skills and Experience
- Relevant educational degree in social sciences, youth work/youth policy, or similar;
- Minimum 10 years of experience in youth policy design and implementation;
- Minimum 10 years of experience in strategic and policy planning in the area of youth development;
- Excellent knowledge of youth policy and related institutional, legal and strategic set up in Montenegro;
- Previous work experience/cooperation with institutional and other stakeholders in charge of youth policy;
- Strong international experience in youth policy.
- Fluency in local and English language is required.
Criteria for selection:
Combined Scoring method will be used. When using this weighted scoring method, the award of the contract should be made to the inidividual consultant whose offer has been evaluated and determined as: (i) responsive, compliant, acceptable, and (ii) having received the highest score out of a pre-determined set of weighted technical and financial criteria specific to the solicitation.
Technical criteria weight - 70% (Background and education 10%; Relevant previous experience 20%; Substantial knowledge/Required competencies 30%; Required language 10%);
Financial criteria weight - 30%.
Only offerors obtaining a minimum 490 points for technical criteria will be considered for the financial evaluation. For more information on procurement methodology for Individual Contractors, please refer to Procurement Notice.
Interested applicants are requested to submit their applications by January 16, 2022 by using the Apply now button.
The application should contain a duly completed CV or Personal History Form (P11) that can be downloaded from https://www.me.undp.org/content/montenegro/sr/home/jobs.html
Please note that UNDP jobsite system allows only one uploading of application document, so please make sure that you merge all your documents into a single file.
Only the short-listed applicants will be contacted and requested to submit a letter of interest including a price quotation indicating the lump sum (in EUR) requested for the work envisaged in the section "Description of Responsibilities".