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Climate and Market Consultant

New York City

  • Organization: IRC - International Rescue Committee
  • Location: New York City
  • Grade: Consultant - Contractors Agreement
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Environment
    • Meteorology, Geology and Geography
    • Climate Change
  • Closing Date:

Background

The International Rescue Committee (IRC) responds to the world’s worst humanitarian crises and helps people to survive and rebuild their lives. Founded in 1933 at the request of Albert Einstein, IRC offers life-saving care and life-changing assistance to refugees forced to flee from war or disaster. At work today in more than 40 countries and in 22 U.S. cities, IRC restores safety, dignity and hope to millions who are uprooted by conflict or disaster. IRC leads the way from harm to home.

The Syria crisis is often described as the worst humanitarian catastrophe since the end of the Cold War. Inside Syria, 6.1 million people are internally displaced and 13.1 million are in need of humanitarian assistance, with three million in hard-to-reach areas. There are 5.4 million Syrian refugees in neighboring countries. This is no short-term humanitarian episode. The devastating human consequences to huge numbers of people will endure for decades. The destruction of relationships, communities, livelihoods, homes and infrastructure will take years to repair. The IRC’s programming seeks to alleviate this through evidence-based programming in health, integrated protection, and economic recovery and development (including CVA, livelihoods, and agricultural programming).

As part of the IRC Syria country programs three-year Strategy Action Plan, the IRC seeks to better understand the impact of climate change on markets and value chains in northern Syria, and critically, determine how IRC’s programming can mitigate threats and build on opportunities that climate change and weather events pose to people in northern Syria. While the impact of climate change is generally well understood, the IRC is not aware of a similar study that focuses on market and livelihoods impact, including agricultural value chains, which directly effect IRC’s clients.

Scope of Work:

Leveraging guidance from USAID’s Climate Risk Screening and Management Tool, the consultants will conduct an assessment of markets, value chains and livelihoods in Northeast Syria (NES) and Northwest Syria (NWS) to determine the market-related risks of climate change, including its correlated weather events and phenomena including drought and water crises, flooding and sever winter storms, fires, pests, salination, sand storms, and crop failure; and the related mitigating practices people and NGOs can use to adapt to future climate shocks. The final written report shall analyze data collected via the assessments conducted in each hub and other literature to provide practical and feasible interventions the IRC can design. Given the IRC’s remit, and the current literature on the subject of climate change – the IRC is not looking for suggestions surrounding policies and large-scale infrastructural programs that cannot be conducted by the IRC and similar NGOs.

 

Guiding Questions:

 

While subject to further finetuning based on further literature desk research and initial discussions with key informants (KIs), assessments could aim to answer the following questions:

 

1. What are the affects of climate change on markets including processing, trading, commodity availability, financial services, seasonal work, critical agricultural value chains, Agro-businesses, etc. What barriers are there to ensuring market are resilient and adaptive to the effects of climate change?

2. What are the main drivers of the water crisis in NE/NWS? How do climate shocks and weather patterns affect flooding, drought, and water availability? What are the impacts on: displacement patterns, settlements, food systems, health?

1. What is the current community water infrastructure/system? Where are there gaps or dysfunctional segments in the system? What opportunities are there to improve water quality and availability, improve efficient use of water in agriculture, and reduce water requirements within agricultural production?

3. How does climate change effect the agricultural calendar, and what corresponding threats does that pose to markets? How can interventions address this?

2. What effect does climate change have on migration (disruptions to seasonal agricultural work, weather-related displacement, etc.)? How does climate change driven migration/displacement affect markets?

3. How does the climate-conflict relationship affect markets and livelihoods? Looking at a local-level and not macro perspective how is conflict linked to environmental degradation and change, and vice versa; and what programming can mitigate this.

4. How does gender intersect with the above, and does climate change affect men and women in northern Syria differently?

5. How can we use existing climate analysis tools and modeling, including satellite imaging (e.g., SMAP), to better design agricultural livelihoods programming: What global tools are available for NWS/NES? Locally, what weather forecast services are functioning? Who collects and analyzes the data? How accurate are they? Are we able to use the data?

6. To what degree is the local population aware of the threats of climate-related events? What is their perception of the causes of these events, and do they have plans to respond or mitigate negative effects? What are the challenges to successful adaptation/mitigating practices?

Deliverables:

1.       Conduct literature review and KIIs to identify gaps in knowledge and determine research questions.

2.       Develop assessment tools and design data collection

3.       Train assessors and oversee assessments in each hub (NWS and NES)

4.       Analyze data and develop a final written report to present main findings and programmatic recommendations

Payment Rate and Schedule:

The expected LoE for the scope of work is 80 working days for two consultants in one team, with one lead consultant identified in application (40 days per consultant), including days for report revisions and finalization. Travel to NES and if possible, NWS or Turkey is required. The IRC will pay upon approval of all deliverables.

Requirements:

  • Extensive experience in conducting similar studies in similar context to Syria, demonstrated by publicly shared reports.
  • Strong English Communication (written and spoken), and Arabic language skills preferred.

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