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Consultants to conduct the review of decentralisation and regionalisation pilot in Europe

CONTEXT

In 2016, Terre des hommes started a pilot project aimed at setting up a regional management structure best fitted to implement Tdh’s 2020 ambitions in Europe.

In its global Strategic Plan 2016-2020, the Foundation committed to decentralisation. It indicated that “decentralisation will be implemented of all roles at a regional hub in Eastern Europe and partially in West Africa and Central America. These pilot schemes will be evaluated in 2019 and regional mechanisms will be harmonised and implemented in all the areas of intervention”.

The concept of variable geometry was introduced by the same Strategic Plan. It holds that different geographies of intervention can operationalise the programmatic approach in different ways, can regionalise or decentralise in different ways. However this concept needs to be refined with a goal to take a decision and promote one model in 2021.

Terre des hommes (Tdh) has been working in Central and Eastern European since the end of the nineties, addressing major child protection issues. Driven by a systemic approach, Tdh interventions have focused on strengthening preventive and inclusive child protection systems for all children. It also put a particular focus on the need of children affected by social exclusion, physical abuse, forced labour and migration. Our strategic vision for the Region foresees that “by 2018, Terre des hommes Lausanne is one of the leading child protection agencies working throughout Central and Eastern Europe for the full realization of inclusive child protection systems”.

Tdh is currently present in seven countries in Europe and is working in ten others with local or regional partners.  A regional approach is not new: a regional project was started in Budapest since 2006, later transformed into a Regional Delegation and a Regional Office since 2017. 

The project to be reviewed can be summarised as follows:

Original Title: Piloting the development of the regional hub to support the implementation of Tdh programmatic strategy in the Central and South Europe

Start and End date:  June 2016 to December 2020 (end of phase 4)

General and specific objective: To set up the regional management structure best fitted to implement Tdh 2020 ambitions in Europe.

The pilot expects to reach:

  • More efficiency : better allocation of resources, better cost structures; better and more sustainable funding capacities, more ethical fundraising practices
  • More effectiveness: better programmatic alignment; more influence, better integration with the regional context, more responsiveness (agility); improved level of expertise
  • Reinforced lagging factors : Improved knowledge across country; sharing of knowledge and peer learning; Improved understanding of contingency and regional context of Tdh; Improved project cycle management standards

Expected results / indicators and activities : as per available Key Performance Indicators

Project stakeholders: All Tdh staff in the Region, Geographic Operations Division, ProGress Division Support, Operational Partners, Funding Partners.

Brief summary of the project’s monitoring system: ongoing monitoring of KPIs and final evaluation.

OBJECTIVES OF THE EVALUATION

The objectives of this review are to enhance Accountability (towards the funders, partners and beneficiaries) and Learning and to Respond to operational concerns (what consequences will the action have), and strategic concerns (what lessons can be drawn to improve the intervention strategies of the institutions concerned). All three objectives are important but the third one was the main driver for the establishment of the Pilot and will therefore take precedence in this review.

SCOPE OF THE REVIEW

The geographic scope is “Europe Region”, comprised of the following entities:

  1. Europe Zone team based in Lausanne, Regional Office based in Budapest
  2. Eastern Europe Multi-country Delegation (covering Romania, Moldova and Ukraine)
  3. Southern Europe Multi-country Delegation (covering Albania, Greece and Kosovo)

In addition the review will cover two programmes (Migration and Justice) as well as Transversal protection, and should be focused on the level of political or institutional change, not direct aid.

REVIEW CRITERIA AND QUESTIONS

The evaluation will answer the following questions:

To what extent is regionalisation at the service of Vision 2030?  How is it an instrument of the 2016-2020 strategic plan?  Is regionalisation a factor of transformation as presented in Vision 2030?

To answer these umbrella questions, the consultants should determine what are the key specificities linked to regionalisation, what is the impact of these and whether this impact contributed to the realisation of the vision and the transformation agenda that it implies. As a first step the consultants will analyse the object of the review by identifying which functions or processes have been regionalised, decentralised or delocalized.

The review should provide recommendations for improvements to make the regional structure more contributive to the institutional strategy.

Unplanned or unexpected effects of the regionalisation pilot found should be also highlighted and analysed.

Fields for the review :

  • Decision-making

At which levels are key decisions taken?  Is it different from before? Which effects? Compared to other regions, what does that lead to?  Does that lead to more participatory decision-making processes at regional, multi-country or country level?

  • Responsibilities

How are the responsibilities shared within the organisation at different levels (HQ, region, multi-country delegation, country) compared to the previous model (without regionalisation)?

From a U team perspective (U team being composed of Regional Human Resources Manager, Regional Quality and Accountability Adviser, Regional Communication Manager, Regional Advocacy Adviser, Regional Resource Mobilisation Manager, Regional Child Protection Adviser), how did the functional and hierarchical lines work in practice?

  • Programmes and expertise

What level of autonomy does the regionalisation model allow for at programs level (regional adaptation and priorities) ?

How does this impact positively or negatively the realisation of the global programme strategy including the matrix approach? Did it have an impact on the number of regional projects?

Does it allow for the development of expertise or experience in the region that is unique to Tdh ?

  • Internal accountability and reporting

What are the accountability mechanisms that allow for follow up in the context of regionalisation (from delegation to region and from region to global) ?

  • Support services

How did support services (finance, admin, HR, IT, logs) contribute to, support and benefit from the process? What was the role of the human resources department, of regional HR functions? Did staff benefit from more or less learning and development opportunities, travel, orientations, exposure?

  • Shaping/design of interventions and Accountability to stakeholders

How does regionalisation influence the design of projects and interventions (through processes, geographic proximity etc.) and their capacities to be accountable to stakeholders at local and regional levels (beneficiaries and communities, local authorities, CSOs or services)?

From a fundraising perspective, how did regionalisation impact decisions around: types of projects, for which donors, for how long?

How did regionalisation impact the way partners are selected and the relationships with them?  Did it enhance multi-country partnerships dialogues and exchanges?

  • Efficiency, Effectiveness, Knowledge and Learning

Evaluate Key Performance Indicators and in terms of future monitoring and evaluation, make a proposal for updated KPIs particularly on additional cost-benefit analysis (see Annex 1).

We expect consultants to come up with clear recommendations on the future shape of regionalisation and decentralisation.

METHODOLOGY

The Consultants will be allowed freedom to define their methodology in dialogue with the team that accompanies the review. The methodology could include outcome-harvesting and goal-free interviewing processes. We would like to stress the participatory character of the review at the field level. Key informants will include:  CODIR (Tdh Executive Committee), COPIL (The Steering Committee for this Pilot project); Europe Executive team (also known as “E team”, composed of Heads of Delegations and Deputies), Unified Hub team (“U team”, composed of regional advisers and managers), “R Team” (Regional Office staff); Funding Partners (Oak Foundation, ADC), Implementation partners; Albanian, Romanian and Moldovan State actors; beneficiaries impacted by regionalisation in the context of the creation of multi-country delegations (for example via focus group discussions in each country).

Geographic Scope: 15-20 fieldwork days in Albania, Romania, Moldova, Hungary - (the list of countries can be amended by consultants as part of their Inception Report).

DELIVERABLES

The consultants will deliver:

  • A summary of literature review (initial documentary analysis)
  • An Inception report including: presentation of the understanding of the ToR and of the assignment, detailed methodology and tools, schedule and revised working plan
  • A de-briefing and presentation of findings after each field trip
  • A preliminary report to be provided the end of the field data collection phase, and a final version 10 days after Tdh’s feedback.

Contents of the final report incorporating:

  • 1 executive summary (max. 3-4 pages)
  • 1 narrative report (max. 30-40 pages)
  • 1 summary table with the main conclusions and recommendations (separate the short, medium and long term) and the lessons learned. 
  • Annexes: Containing the technical details of the evaluation, as well as the terms of reference, surveys protocols and questionnaires, protocols of interviews and observation, tables or graphics, secondary review references, persons and institutions contacted, a PowerPoint presentation of the findings and recommendations. There may be a need to share of transcripts (rendered anonymous) of interviews, focus groups, observation, to be determined.

All documents will be written and produced in English. 

KEY MILESTONES

Phase I: Preparation and analysis of documentation and briefings

16 January 2019: Publication, invitation to bidders with a deadline of 6 February 2019

6 February 2019: End of bidding process - Selection Committee selects consultants

15 March 2019: Presentation of Inception Report by the Consultants, following Desk review + methodology proposal and tools (presented to COPIL)

Phase II: Field work

From end March-April-May 2019:  Field data collection and analysis. Debriefing after each field trips.

Phase III: Analysis & report writing

1 June 2019: Preliminary report and Recommendations (prior to Note de Cadrage) sent to Reference Group

August-September: Restitution to the Europe executive team and presentation by consultants in Budapest

Phase IV: Validation

End September 2019: Final Report and presentation to COPIL, possibly to governance board (Conseil de Fondation).

The consultants should undertake to integrate time for briefing in the field into his schedule in addition to basic and coordinated debriefing. A debriefing in Budapest and/or Lausanne should also be incorporated in the planning.

PROFILE OF THE CONSULTANT

A team of 2 experts is recommended. One member of the team will be appointed as Team Leader and a second one as a Team member. Gender and cultural diversity will be considered as an important aspect in the selection of the team.

The minimum requirements of the team of key experts for this contract are as follows:

  • The Team Leader will need to have experience and expertise in evaluation and reviews of NGOs from an organisational/operational and financial perspective. The team leader will have the overall responsibility for the services. In addition to experience at senior level in evaluations and reviews, the Team Leader has to demonstrate experience in the management of complex projects as well as a trackrecord of successful coordination and team management.
  • One more junior team member with experience in various subjectmatters such as project cycle management, M&E, child protection, migration, justice.

Minimum requirements for the Team Leader:

Qualifications and skills:

  • At least a Master's Degree in Development, Business, Management, Change Management, International Relations, Social sciences, Law or other relevant field related to this assignment; or, in its absence, equivalent professional experience of 5 years (above the general professional experience duration fixed below) in a relevant area.

General professional experience:

  • At least 10 years of experience in organisational assessments, HR, change management;
  • Previous experience in evaluation and review;
  • Participatory assessment, in particular from a child and youth participation perspective;
  • Capacity to undertake basic financial and cost-benefit analyses.

Soft skills:

  • Excellent communication skills, in particular, liaising with different stakeholders as evidenced by previous assignments;
  • Experience in the management of complex projects as well as a track-record of successful coordination and team management;
  • Strong capacity to quickly understand complex and changing circumstances as evidenced by previous assignments.

Language skills:

  • Excellent command of English (written and spoken), level C2 in the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages, or equivalent system required;
  • Good command of French (for at least one of the team members).

Minimum requirements for the Team Member:

  • At least 5 years of experience of project cycle management (PCM) application, monitoring and evaluation of projects preferably in NGOs;
  • experience and expertise in various subject-matters such as human resources, child protection, migration, justice.

Language skills:

  • Excellent command of English (written and spoken), level C2 in the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages, or equivalent system required;
  • Good command of French (for at least one of the team members).

TO APPLY:

Interested candidates should submit a technical offer comprising:

  • A cover letter demonstrating Understanding of the objective of the study and the Terms of Reference;
  • A preliminary explanation of the methodology proposed (to be refined at end of Phase 1);
  • A chronogram showing details for the realization of each of the review phases. The schedule proposed should include time for briefing and debriefing at the mission, and at Head Office as far as possible;
  • A financial offer with a budget detailed by item (fees, other costs);
  • Updated CV;
  • An example of similar studies carried out (if possible);
  • Contacts of 3 references.

Please write to: recruitment@tdh-europe.org

Please include “External Review Regionalisation Decentralisation” in the subject line of the application email. Deadline for submission: 7 February 2019 COB

Due to an anticipated high number of applications, Tdh is not in a position to respond to every applicant individually.

More information can be found here

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