Consultant Global Thematic Evaluation of WCARO “Women Peace and Security (WPS)” program for better prevention of conflicts and for peace consolidation in the Sahel region
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For many years, the Sahel region has witnessed numerous political, security and humanitarian crises exacerbated by terrorism and violent extremism with serious cases of violations of women and girls’ rights. Despite the region’s potentialities, this instability is hampering efforts towards its development. These challenges have also highlighted not only women and girls’ large-scale vulnerability, but they also provide evidence for their potential in fostering peace and resilience in the region.
Women in the Sahel have been centrally involved and affected by the prevailing development, security and governance challenges in the region. Gender indices from the Sahel confirm that women in the region stand as among the poorest in the world. The effects of peace and security crises in the region has contributed to an expansion of female-headed households, including in many of the refugee and displaced camps. The region records amongst the highest levels of maternal mortality globally, child marriage, FGM… At another level, the result of protracted levels of insecurity and conflict in the Sahel has contributed to high levels of violence against women, a situation compounded by the encroaching activities of violent extremists, which is contributing to a roll-back of fundamental rights of women. Furthermore, the extent of women’s participation in governance and decision-making remains weak across the Sahel, affording limited opportunities for them to influence and inform policies on security, governance and development. Persisting insecurity is further contributing to women’s limited engagement in political processes in the Sahel.
In seeking to draw attention to the gender dimensions of the insecurity and instability confronting the Sahel and Lake Chad Basin and underline the need to support the contributions of women to addressing these challenges, women from the G5 countries convened in Ndjamena, Chad, from 22-23 July 2015, for a Sahel Women’s Forum, held under the auspices of the Office of the Special Adviser for the Sahel, the African Union and UN Women. Women leaders at Forum issued a communique calling for Member States and international partners to recognize and engage women as partners in efforts to bring peace and security to the Sahel.
Empirical evidence from research has pointed to the need to take women’s rights into account and involve them in peace efforts as underlined in the UN Security Council Resolution 1325 and all the subsequent resolutions on Women, Peace and Security. The Declaration on Countering Radicalization and Violent Extremism in the Sahel, adopted by the G5 Sahel Heads of State in May 2015, explicitly acknowledged the crucial role of women in combating the spread of violent extremism. At the Sahel Women’s Forum, convened in Bamako in February 2017 which adopted the Bamako Declaration, women outlined a range of priority interventions with a view to facilitate their full participation as partners in addressing insecurity and violence in the Sahel countries.
Despite efforts deployed by governments and different partners, the security situation continues to deteriorate and one of the impact of this complex context is the increase of social tension and political crisis that led to a series of coups in the region. In Mali, Guinea. Burkina Faso, Military juntas in West Africa have seized power in recent months and Chad is also in a transition process.
Considering the serious security situation prevailing in the region and the priorities of the Women, Peace and Security agenda, UNWOMEN is supporting efforts for peace and security in the Sahel region. UN Women has developed in 2017 a regional program with a focus on supporting the Sahel region towards achieving three (3) major results by 2021, including specifically : (i) Creating an environment conducive to the effective implementation of commitments and norms on women, peace and security is strengthened at national and regional level; (ii) Ensuring women’s civil society organizations active involvement in the prevention of community conflict and the fight against violent extremism and in formal and informal peace mechanisms; (iii) Ensure that women and children’s rights are better respected both in conflict situation and in the fight against violent extremism and terrorism.
This Programme is in perfect line with regional instruments, including the G5 Sahel strategy for development and Security and its Action Plan as well as the 2016 ECOWAS Political Framework for Security Sector Reform and Governance (SSRG). It contributed to the implementation of the United Nations Integrated Strategy for the Sahel (UNISS) and its Sahel Support Plan, all of which recognize the primordial role women have to play in restoring peace and stability in the Sahel region.
All UNWOMEN country offices are also implementing strong programs on WPS and humanitarian response. Nine countries of the Sahel covered by the UNISS have already developed their National Action Plans for the implementation or UNSCR1325.
Several actors are trying to provide direct and indirect responses to the Sahel crisis through military interventions, development programmes and improved governance. The complexity of existing conflicts in many countries in the region as a result of problems with governance, poverty, access to natural resources, illicit trafficking, cross-border crimes and violent extremism, etc. requires more than ever that women and young people redouble their efforts and find out innovative approaches for the return of peace, fraternity and social cohesion. The COVID-19 pandemic has had multiple impacts that will affect the security and operations of women's organizations, and some are even concerned about their survival. For these reasons, UNWOMEN is planning to conduct a regional thematic evaluation of all its interventions aiming to increase the implementation of the women, peace and security agenda in the Sahel region and maximize his impact among beneficiaries.
The geographical coverage area is as follows: Burkina Faso, Guinea-Bissau, Niger, Nigeria,
Senegal, Mali, Mauritania, Gambia, Tchad, Cameroun.
Duties and Responsibilities
Evaluation purpose and objectives
The main purpose of this regional thematic evaluation is to contribute to enhancing UN Women’s intervention and approach to increase women´s leadership on peace and security in the Sahel region. Given the security, political and humanitarian situation that continues to deteriorate in the Sahel, UN WOMEN must rethink and adapt its approaches and intervention strategies taking into account this new context, but also align itself with regional peace and security instruments such as the UNISS.
This evaluation aims to analyze the relevance, effectiveness, efficiency and sustainability of UN WOMEN intervention on WPS in the Sahel region, but also to assess the relationships between the various strategies and actual changes in women’s lives and, at the same time, it will contribute to organizational learning in the area of WPS.
This evaluation is conducted under the direct leadership of the Evaluation Specialist at the regional level. The evaluation specialists will adhere to UN Women’s Evaluation Policy and UNEG Norms, Standards, Ethical and other relevant guidelines.
In order to facilitate a comprehensive review of evaluation products, UN Women - WCA is establishing a reference group.
Composition and function of the UN Women evaluation reference group
The UN Women reference group is an integral part of the evaluation management structure and is constituted to facilitate the participation of relevant stakeholders in the design and scope of the evaluation, raising awareness of the different information needs, quality assurance throughout the process and in disseminating the evaluation results.
The UN Women reference group will be composed of [WPS experts from the UN system, non-governmental organization representatives, government or academia].
Reference group members will be expected to:
- Act as a source of knowledge for the evaluation.
- Act as an informant of the evaluation process.
- Assist in the collection of pertinent information and documentation.
- Assist in identifying external stakeholders to be consulted during the process.
- Play a key role in disseminating the evaluation findings and implementation of the management response.
- Participate in any reference group meetings.
- Provide input and quality assurance on the key evaluation products: ToR, inception report and draft evaluation report.
- Participate in the validation meeting of the final evaluation report.
- Participate in learning activities related to the evaluation report.
The proposed reference group composition includes the following:
Representative/ RO Director
Policy advisor of Governance Peace and Security
Regional Evaluation Specialist
Regional programme coordinator WPS
Key criteria and questions for the evaluation
The following questions provide an indication of key information to be informed by the evaluation exercice.
The following can guide the analysis:
- What is the impact of UN WOMEN's intervention on peace and security in the Sahel region?
- Are UN WOMEN interventions aligned with local and national commitments and priorities of countries and partners?
- Are WPS project activities and outcomes consistent with overall global and national gender priorities?
- Did the WPS projects' implementation strategy meet with the agreement of the local culture or was it rather inappropriate to the geographical situation and context?
- To what extent have WPS projects played a catalytic role in addressing some of the root causes of political fragility and gender inequality, including those that impede women's political participation in peace and security?
- Are the identified targets the most relevant in terms of vulnerabilities?
- To what extent do the local population, beneficiaries and external observers perceive UN-WOMEN's intervention as relevant?
- Have the identified needs and problems remained relevant in the project implementation process or have they evolved? If they have evolved, what was the project's ability to respond to changes and new needs and priorities?
- How can UN-WOMEN improve its WPS and Youth Peace and security (YPS) intervention strategy in the Sahel region?
- How can UN-Women better integrate and align with regional peace and security instruments?
The following points should be investigated:
- What progress has been made in achieving the expected results of the work plan? What specific results were achieved, whether expected or unexpected, positive or negative? To what extent are beneficiaries satisfied with the results?
- What are the main factors that contributed to the achievement or non-achievement of the project's intended objectives?
- Do projects have effective monitoring mechanisms in place to measure progress toward outcomes?
- To what extent was monitoring data used objectively for management actions and decision making?
- Were the implementation strategies used the most effective?
- Are the partners identified for implementation the most effective on the ground? Did the project's organizational structures, managerial support, and coordination mechanisms effectively support project implementation? What are the recommendations for improvement?
- Were satisfactory results achieved in relation to the objectives set? What are the causes of achievement and non-achievement of expected results?
- What is the measure of change in the products and effects observed? What is the added value of UN Women's peace and security work compared to other peace and security actors?
- How innovative are the program's approaches and strategies for increasing women's participation in the context of peace and security? What types of innovative good practices-if any-have been introduced into the program to achieve results in this area?
- To what extent can the changes or progress made be attributed to the project?
- Is the value of the changes observed positive or negative?
- What were the constraints and enabling factors (e.g., policy, good practice, bureaucratic, etc.) that affected project implementation and outcomes? What efforts were made to mitigate risks and take advantage of opportunities?
- To what extent did the partnership strategy influence the effectiveness of the project? Was there synergy with other peace and security interventions on the ground? Was there a linkage between the activities of each implementing partner for greater project impact?
- Did the project's target populations actually benefit from the changes brought about by the project?
- To what extent have the benefits of gender mainstreaming in peace and security interventions and economic empowerment of targets had a wider impact (on more people in the region)?
- To what extent have projects linked peace and security to development?
- To what extent have the results improved the various plans of UN Women?
- Did the program’s projects use resources in the most cost-effective way to achieve its objectives? /or: Were resources (financial, human, technical support, etc.) allocated strategically to achieve program outcomes?
- Were the program’s projects implemented in the most optimal manner compared to the alternatives?
- What steps were taken during planning and implementation to ensure that resources were used effectively?
- Were the products delivered on time? If not, how did the project team mitigate the impact of delays?
- Are the programme and its components cost-effective? Could the activities and outputs have been achieved with fewer resources or in a shorter time frame, without reducing their quality and quantity?
- How effective are UN Women's operational procedures in its response to women's peace and security compared to UN agencies working on similar issues? How effective can the partnership between implementing partners be considered?
- What capacity of national partners, both technical and operational, has been strengthened?
- To what extent have the capacities of duty-bearers and rights-holders been strengthened?
- How have partnerships (with governments, UN, donors, NGOs, civil society organizations, religious leaders, the media) been established to foster sustainability of results?
- Did the intervention design include an appropriate sustainability and exit strategy (including promoting national/ local ownership, use of local capacity, etc.) to support positive changes in Gender Equality and Human Rights after the end of the intervention? To what extent were stakeholders involved in the preparation of the strategy?
- Are there indications that the project has had a catalytic effect on national actors in the commitment to pursue other peace-building activities, and are there signs of potential support from other donors?
- Is there evidence of sustainable transformations at the local and national level that can be associated with the joint intervention?
- To what extent has the intervention contributed to the momentum for peace by encouraging participants and communities to develop their own initiatives, also as a result to the initial support provided project?
- To what extent did this effort result in the creation or reform of political institutions or mechanisms that deal meaningfully with grievances or injustices?
Gender equality and human rights
- To what extent have gender equality and human rights principles been integrated into project objectives and goals?
- Were projects processes and activities conducted in a way that did not discriminate against stakeholders?
- Does the program document incorporate a gender diagnostic with disaggregated data that provides evidence of the specific needs and constraints faced by women?
- Is the program management team gender balanced?
- Are the specific outcomes of projects on men and women clearly highlighted in progress reports?
Diversity and Inclusion
- Were people with disabilities included and engaged in project planning and implementation?
- Were people with disabilities among the project beneficiaries?
- What barriers did people with disabilities face?
The list of questions is not exhaustive. The evaluation team can engage in discussions with stakeholders and consider adding additional evaluation criteria related to program value added, partnership, innovation, flexibility, etc. And/or review the list of key questions identified above.
Based on these consultations, the evaluator will develop an evaluation matrix that includes key questions, evaluation criteria, indicators, sources of information to be used, and cross-reference.
Methodology (process and method)
The evaluation will be conducted in accordance with UN Women (GERAAS) and United Nations Evaluation Group (UNEG) evaluation standards, integrating human rights and gender equality. The evaluation process will be participatory from the planning phase to the delivery of the final report.
The methodology must clearly focus on identifying gender issues in the implementation of the program. This is one of the elements through which this evaluation will be examined by reviewing the classification of reports, in accordance with UN-SWAP criteria.
Overall, the evaluation will begin with a preparatory phase and then the evaluation team will conduct a data collection mission to UN-WOMEN intervention sites in the Sahel region. Upon return from this mission, the team will submit a mission report to UN Women and prepare the aide-mémoire for a debriefing workshop. During this workshop, the team will present the main findings. If necessary, the team will undertake additional data collection to incorporate amendments from the feedback workshop. An interim report will be produced and submitted to UN Women for review. Finally, the evaluation team will produce the final evaluation report. All evaluation products submitted by the evaluation team will be reviewed against UN Women's GERAAS quality assurance standards. Only after approval by the Evaluation Management Group will these products be considered final.
The evaluation methodology will be developed by the evaluation team during the initial phase. The inception report will detail the team's proposed methodological approach, with reference to the following elements:
- An evaluation design based on the detailed and selected evaluation questions and organized into an evaluation matrix;
- The tools and means (interviews, observations, focus groups, literature review, survey, site visits, etc.) that will be used to collect relevant information and data, including the identification of a variety of key informants to be interviewed;
- Approaches to data analysis and interpretation (e.g., types of data analysis used, data collection instruments, level of precision, sampling methods);
In the inception report, the team will specify its selection of the most appropriate methods, possibly including, but not limited to:
- A literature review: A literature review including the M&E system;
- Interviews with various project stakeholders (project team, local project partners, UN Women officials, project beneficiaries, administrative authorities, etc.).
- Individual interviews and focus groups: other peace and security stakeholders, various groups of beneficiaries (GBV committees, cooperative members, GBV survivors, family members, traditional and religious leaders, etc.)
- Direct observations in the field of social cohesion,
- An analysis of basic and secondary data, using a triangulation approach.
- The list of information sources collected will be annexed to the report (sources: documents, institutional databases, financial files, beneficiaries, staff, donors, experts, civil servants and community groups, media).
Management of evaluation roles & responsibilities
The project evaluation process will be guided by the evaluation management group, which provides overall guidance and advice on the conduct of the evaluation. The evaluation manager will be responsible for the oversight of the evaluation to produce a good quality report and minimize potential risks that may arise during the process. On the other hand, the logistical aspects of the evaluation (office space, administrative and secretarial support, telecommunications, photocopying of documentation, travel, etc.) as well as the design and dissemination of data collection tools will be the responsibility of the evaluator. UN Women will organize the various workshops envisaged during the evaluation process (validation process).
The reference group is essential to ensure that the approach used in the evaluation is sound and relevant to all stakeholders involved in the implementation process. Reference group members will provide feedback and advice at each stage of the evaluation process on the terms of reference, the inception report, and the pre-evaluation report. If necessary, they will make suggestions to the evaluation commissioners to further guide the evaluation process. The Evaluation Manager will engage with the ERG.
Evaluation Team composition, skills and experiences
- Evaluation management group
- Reference Group
- Implementing partners
- Project beneficiaries
- Evaluation Team
UN Women evaluation manager
Recruitment of evaluator(s)
3 weeks post circulation
UN Women evaluation manager
3 weeks (post contract signing)
Conduct stage (data collection)
11 Weeks (post inception report submission)
Reporting stage (analysis and presentation of preliminary findings)
3 weeks (post final data collection)
Use and follow-up
6 weeks post final report
UN Women evaluation manager
The evaluator must submit the following reports in paper and electronic format (A4 format) and in electronic form (email, USB stick) in Word and Excel format in French and in English with the summaries in French and in English as indicated in the following table:
Description of deliverables
In consultation with the UN Women team and the Reference Group, the evaluation team will develop an Inception Report, which will include data collection methodology and instruments and an evaluation plan in line with the Terms of Reference.
Presentation of preliminary conclusions
Upon completion of the data collection, the evaluation team will conduct a presentation of the preliminary results in order to provide stakeholders with the opportunity to make inputs and other comments to the initial findings and other outcomes of the " data analysis.
The first draft of the report should be submitted for consideration and comments to the evaluation management group, and evaluation reference group consequently. Several rounds of feedback may prove necessary to ensure the report reflects the expected quality, in line with UN Women GERAAS standards
Final evaluation report
The final evaluation report will have taken into account all comments received from the Reference Group and the Evaluation Management Group.
Detailed Tasks of the Evaluation Consultant
Consultant’s performance will be evaluated based on timeliness, responsibility, initiative, communication, accuracy, and quality of the products delivered.
Upon completion of :
- Preparatory phase including inception report : 20%
- Data collection and presentation of preliminary conclusions: 20%
- Interim Report : 30%
- Final Evaluation Report : 20%
- Presentation of findings :10%
- Respect for Diversity
- Awareness and Sensitivity Regarding Gender Issues
- Creative Problem Solving
- Effective Communication
- Inclusive Collaboration
- Stakeholder Engagement
- Leading by Example
- Programme formulation, implementation, monitoring and evaluation skills
- Good knowledge of Results Based Management
- Ability to summarize notes taken during interviews
- Awareness of Gender analysis
Required Skills and Experience
Master’s degree in Economics, Political Science, Gender, Development Studies, Performance Management or a similar field
- 7 years’ professional experience in evaluation
- Experience/knowledge on gender equality and women’s empowerment issues, peace and security, youth issues, gender mainstreaming, normative frameworks to promote women’s rights and economic empowerment at regional and global levels; gender analysis and knowledge of the related mandates within the UN system and particularly that of UN Women’s;
- Experience or knowledge in gender-responsive social protection systems, domestic and non-remunerated care work, and women’s income security and decent work;
- Strong analytical, facilitation and communications skills and ability to negotiate amongst a wide range of stakeholders;
- Familiarity with the West and Central Africa Region regional and country level.
- Knowledge of human rights issues, the human rights-based approach to programming, human rights analysis and related mandates within the UN system.
- Fluent in French and English
Selection of applicants
Shortlisted applicants will be invited to a competency-based interview. UN Women may ask shortlisted applicants to share a sample of a report they have recently authored.
Ethical code of conduct
UN Women has developed a UN Women Evaluation Consultants Agreement Form (UNEG Code of Conduct for Evaluation in the UN System) for evaluators that must be signed as part of the contracting process, which is based on the UNEG Ethical Guidelines and Pledge of Commitment to Ethical Conduct in Evaluation. These documents will be annexed to the consultant’s contract.
All applications must include (as an attachment) the completed UN Women Personal History form (P-11) which can be downloaded from: https://www.unwomen.org/sites/default/files/Headquarters/Attachments/Sections/About%20Us/Employment/UN-Women-P11-Personal-History-Form.doc. Kindly note that the system will only allow one attachment. Applications without the completed UN Women P-11 form will be treated as incomplete and will not be considered for further assessment.
In July 2010, the United Nations General Assembly created UN Women, the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women. The creation of UN Women came about as part of the UN reform agenda, bringing together resources and mandates for greater impact. It merges and builds on the important work of four previously distinct parts of the UN system (DAW, OSAGI, INSTRAW and UNIFEM), which focused exclusively on gender equality and women's empowerment.
Diversity and inclusion:
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If you need any reasonable accommodation to support your participation in the recruitment and selection process, please include this information in your application.
UN Women has a zero-tolerance policy on conduct that is incompatible with the aims and objectives of the United Nations and UN Women, including sexual exploitation and abuse, sexual harassment, abuse of authority and discrimination. All selected candidates will be expected to adhere to UN Women’s policies and procedures and the standards of conduct expected of UN Women personnel and will therefore undergo rigorous reference and background checks. (Background checks will include the verification of academic credential(s) and employment history. Selected candidates may be required to provide additional information to conduct a background check.)