UNDAC Training Consultant
- Organization: UNOCHA - Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
- Location: Geneva
- Grade: Consultancy - Consultant - Contractors Agreement
- Education, Learning and Training
- Closing Date: Closed
Result of Service
1. Update and re-design of the UNDAC Induction course
2. Design of a new UNDAC refresher course.
01/03/23-15/05/23Duties and Responsibilities
1. Update and re-design of the UNDAC Induction course
The facilitators will be tasked with the review and redesign of the Induction Training, including part of the scenario development for Simulation Exercise (SIMEX) and Desktop Exercise (DTX), feedback sessions and evaluation methodology, working with ERS and possibly a small training working group. A non-governmental organisation that specialises in providing mapping for humanitarian emergencies will support the mapping requirements and develop the baseline data for a fictional country used as a vehicle for the SIMEX and DTX in collaboration with ERS and the consultant(s).
The new UNDAC induction course, in particular the foundational learning objectives, should be virtually based (online), using virtual tools and best practices in the areas of distance learning. Although the new Induction Course should be based on the previous methods and learning objectives in its core, it should contain some changes, meeting the following requirements:
• Building on the training design workshop in Neuhausen, the current learning objectives (LO’s) to be further reviewed and possible new ones on topics to be added (e.g. cash coordination, protection, PSEA).
• Bring up to latest developments: following from above, the content on core topics such as A&A , Information Management and USAR coordination should be updated according to the new procedures and perspectives – to ensure the content of training is relevant to what new members will actually do (i.e. not designing or leading assessment, but taking part, supporting the coordination, etc.)
• As mentioned above, the consultant(s) is/are to work together with a mapping specialist’ NGO and ERS on the development of the DTX and SIMEX context, which involves one new fictional country applicable for both, replacing currently used fictional countries of Jessore and Klanndestan from the current induction course. The initial DTX will be an earthquake scenario and the SIMEX a large cyclone and floods scenario. This new country will have natural hazards and socio-economic and geographical features that allow for various scenarios, issues, taskings, dilemmas, topics and response streams, etc. (i.e. earthquake zones, flood plains, urban/rural areas, minority and majority population groups, coastal areas/islands, main land, member of a regional response mechanism). With common baseline sets, the country context can then also be used for the new refresher course.
• Increase the space for contact with UNDAC partner organisations to increase awareness and spread more information about the possibilities of the partnership programme. Therefore, a session including UNDAC partners should be re-designed and be longer. It can be done in the online phase with pre-recorded videos.
• New induction course should include information about the OCHA mechanisms, services and toolbox for emergency management. and
• The new course should also pay attention to preparedness content and activities of the UNDAC network (e.g. CADRI), e.g. as part of the partners’ kiosk
• Increase the duration and activities in the virtual pre-course phase (e.g 25% of the total content of the course or the first part of the course virtual). The virtual stage should be engaging, with varied and some real-time engagement. The use of google classroom or similar platforms might be considered here, also considering self-paced learning. The online foundation learning should include quizzes and gamification in the whole course to assess how much learning is being achieved (i.e., a quiz at the end of the virtual learning phase; quiz in the middle of the week; gamification activities). A system should be in place to monitor the participants engagement and completion and criteria set to determines admission to the face-to-face (F2F) course.
• The online foundation part is facilitated centrally from the Geneva office, with the face-to-face part of the course facilitation supported by ERS Regional Focal Points based in OCHA regional offices. The online course could have more participants – to have multiple face-to-face courses afterwards. The online part should further include relevant elements about the regional office staff course and associate/operational partners course.
• The face-to-face course should (after initial opening) start with an “immersive” DTX where participants arrive in scenario (e.g. at an Reception and Departure Center, team meetings, etc). This will allow participants to “make mistakes” in the exercise, which is followed by thorough feedback on the quality of products, actions, team management and dynamics. DTX sessions should start with group work and then discuss takeaways in plenary, teasing out the key points that would usually be in the presentation. It should be more guided discovery instead of PowerPoint based.
• This will be followed by a full-fledged SIMEX , replicating field circumstances similar to the current Induction SIMEX. The SIMEX will then be followed again by 1,5-2 days of feedback sessions on team achievements, products and actions.
• Both DTX and SIMEX will include team mentoring by experienced UNDAC members and staff.
• The course programme should also include downtime for team building.
2. Design of a new UNDAC refresher course
For the UNDAC members to be “response-ready” at all times, continuous and updated training is a key element of the UNDAC system. Mandatory Refresher Courses are therefore conducted on a regular basis to ensure UNDAC members and UNDAC Mission Support Partners are kept abreast of the latest development in the humanitarian system. The Refresher Course cycle 2015-2017 drew on lessons from recent missions and past training (classroom based), the 2017-2019 cycle immersed participants in a 3,5-day field simulation exercise and the 2020-2022 cycle was an online course (due to the pandemic), updating members on new and evolving practice and topics.
The methodology of the new cycle of courses will emphasise the “experiential learning approach”, with a strong focus on simulation/scenario-based desk-top exercise and peer-to-peer/participant-driven learning.
The refresher course curriculum will also recognise the increased level of technical aspects in thematic topics of field coordination. As such, focus will be given on a limited number of “must-know” topics for emergency response coordination – rather that general overviews – and a particular attention will be given on soft skills, and individual and team decision making processes.
At the same time, the course should reinforce good coordination skills/practices and soft skills, for instance in dealing with humanitarian coordination challenges and dilemmas in focus areas.
This course will contribute to the participants’ personal development and confidence in the management of humanitarian relief operations.
The course format has been suggested by OCHA ERS and partners, based on the identified learning needs and training requirements. The consultant is hence expected to design a new Refresher course, including scenario development for DTX, feedback sessions and evaluation methodology, working with ERS staff and possibly a small training working group. Priority learning objectives are to be determined based on consultation between ERS and UNDAC members and stakeholders.
It is foreseen that the consultancy’s end product – an in-person Refresher Course for UNDAC members and partner organisations’ members - will be held over 3 to 4 days inside a week and include pre-course reading material and activities, for an audience of 24 participants in each course. The course will include facilitators from OCHA and the UNDAC system, under the coordination of a main course facilitator and an Emergency Response Section lead.
In detail, the new refresher course should meet the following aspects:
• Duration: The duration of the course is set for 3-5 days inside a week.
• Location: The course should be in a hotel or training facility. A field-like setting/environment (for SIMEX) is NOT required, however if the host partner is able to provide space for outdoor facilities this is preferred, e.g. for social activities, learning modalities and exchange.
• Focus: The course should have a regional focus, i.e., scenario/content should be tailored to the regional context, and real interactions with regional actors are required. In this respect it will be beneficial if the fictional country context is the same as used for the DTX and SIMEX in the Induction course, see above.
• Objective is to provide updated knowledge to UNDAC members (national members, OCHA staff and members from international organisations) but also to current partners to maximise their added value in the mission. For that reason, before starting with the development of the new refresher course, the consultant should apply a consultative approach, surveying roster members on views on priority learning areas. The focus shall not be on “evaluation” of members, but skills development and learning.
• The course itself should be structured along a modular approach: While there is no need for a whole SIMEX exercise, it should include DTX exercises (that lend themselves to refreshing knowledge and coordination skills, updating on new learning, and addressing dilemmas), allow enough space for discussion and group work (peer-to-peer learning is key), and target soft-skills practice. The challenge is not to dilute and overload the training but focus on key learning objectives.
• UNDAC Partners should be included – to maximise their value in the mission.
• Feedback mechanism: The consultant also has to develop a suitable feedback mechanism to improve the subsequent refresher courses on the cycle.
• Timeframe: The course should be designed by the first quarter of 2023. As part of this consultancy and following course design, the consultant is expected to act as a (co-)facilitator for the first pilot course scheduled to be held in second quarter 2023. Following the pilot and participants’ feedback, the required adjustments need be made to the course package. It is considered to run a Training of Trainers (ToT) for ERS Regional Focal Points (and other UNDAC members and OCHA staff available) at the HNPW in April 2023.
Bachelor's Degree level academic qualification is the minimum required.
Experience in international emergency response, disaster management/humanitarian coordination.
Experience in training/exercise design and management.
Sound knowledge of OCHA and the UNDAC system.
Fluency in written and spoken English is required.
THE UNITED NATIONS DOES NOT CHARGE A FEE AT ANY STAGE OF THE RECRUITMENT PROCESS (APPLICATION, INTERVIEW MEETING, PROCESSING, OR TRAINING). THE UNITED NATIONS DOES NOT CONCERN ITSELF WITH INFORMATION ON APPLICANTS’ BANK ACCOUNTS.
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