Mercy Corps

Consultant (Ideal Humanitarian, Development, Peace Activity 2 - Operationalizing Hdp Principles)

Mercy Corps

Job Description




Mercy Corps is a leading global organization powered by the belief that a better world is possible. In disaster, in hardship, in more than 40 countries around the world, we partner to put bold solutions into action — helping people triumph over adversity and build stronger communities from within.

The Implementer Led Design, evidence, Analysis and Learning (IDEAL) is an activity funded by USAID’s Bureau for Humanitarian Assistance (BHA) that works to support the United States Government’s goal of improving Food and Nutrition security among the world’s most vulnerable households and communities. IDEAL addresses knowledge and capacity gaps expressed by the food and nutrition security implementing community to support them in the design and implementation of effective Emergency and non-emergency Food Security activities. IDEAL is led by Save the Children and implemented by a consortium that includes Mercy Corps, TANGO International.

In January 2022 USAID published its ‘Programming Considerations for Humanitarian-Development-Peace Coherence: A Note for USAID's Implementing Partners’. This document identified seven core programming principles and one cross cutting commitment for HDP coherent programming:

Uphold and respect humanitarian principles to ensure HA remains unhindered and effective. Plan jointly and seek a common agenda. Create and strengthen communication, Coordination, and learning platforms across different kinds of assistance. Strategically sequence, layer, and integrate humanitarian, development, and peace assistance where appropriate. Promote shock-responsive programming and data-driven adaptive management. Champion conflict integration and opportunities for enabling or building peace where possible. Ensure programming is with, by, and through local partners and systems.
* Underpinning each of these key principles is USAID’s cross-cutting commitment to Gender Equality and inclusive development. Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Access (DEIA) are at the heart of USAID’s mission.

Purpose / Project Description:

IDEAL seeks to document examples of promising practices that highlight implementing partners operationalizing the HDP principles across Food Security Programs and portfolios. The mini-case studies - referred to as ‘practice notes’ -- will be short, operationally focused documents that strip the case example down to the most relevant pieces that food security activity implementers would need to consider application of the practice in other contexts.

While many food security practitioners understand the theoretical value and importance of HDP coherence, many identify a lack of practical understanding of what they need to do differently to be successful in implementing it. One of the most consistent pieces of feedback IDEAL has received across multiple consultations and interactions with food security Implementing Partners is that implementers want practical examples of how to operationalize HDP coherence in their work.

Consultant Objectives/ Activities

IDEAL seeks a consultant who will work remotely to conduct a rapid case study and develop one practice brief on HDP principles for Food Security Programming. The Consultant will produce one practice brief focused on one or more HDP Principles. The specific case study to showcase in the practice brief will be determined by IDEAL. Specifically, in collaboration with the Team Lead and Senior Advisor for Humanitarian, Development, and Peace Coherence, the consultant will:

Conduct brief review of the priority existing documentation or publications; In collaboration with MC team, identify key informants for interview; Finalize structured interview format and content; Conduct interviews and other relevant research (including reviewing any relevant documents and data)– most likely remotely; Draft a practice note with the following illustrative major content areas (adjustments to this list are likely):

key relevant elements of the context the problem the identified gender-sensitivity and/or inclusivity considerations around positive practices, and analysis of how these practices enabled the food security program or portfolio to operationalize the featured HDP coherence principle(s) the key information required and/or recommendations for implementers to replicate the learning across contexts. hooks to further information for more detail Refine practice note based on IDEAL and Donor feedback.

Each practice note will have a thematic focus that primarily features one or more of the 7 HDP principles and 1 cross-cutting commitment identified in USAID’s ‘Programming Considerations for HDP Coherence’ document’. While practice notes may be relevant to more than one of the principles, the idea of the notes is to focus on one principle and the practical behaviors, decisions or practices learned by the program to operationalize the principle rather than document the case in a comprehensive way. The idea is to isolate specific practices that can be replicated elsewhere.

While length will be driven and written with the intended IP audience in mind, the practice notes are planned to be as short as possible to communicate the learning. A target length of 5-7 pages, potentially with supplemental material if necessary is envisaged, to maximize readability and accessibility.

Consultant Deliverables:

The Consultant will deliver:
Brief report of background material.

Interview list. Contextualized interview tool/script. Detailed notes or transcript / recordings of interviews. Draft practice notes 5-7 pages long.

Timeframe / Schedule:

Early April 2023: Activity - Conduct brief review of any existing documentation or publications; Deliverable - Brief report of background material (4 days in total) Late April 2023: Activity - Identify key informants for interview; Deliverable – interview list (1 day in total) Late April 2023: Activity - Finalize structured interview format and content; Deliverable - Contextualized interview tool/script (2.5 days in total) Early May 2023: Activity - Conduct interviews and other relevant research that also represent diverse prospective and taking into consideration relevant power dynamics (including, but not limited to, monitoring data, evaluations, other documents etc.); Deliverable - Detailed notes or transcript / recordings of interviews (4 days in total) Late May 2023: Activity - First draft a practice note; Deliverable - Practice note 5-7 pages long drafted and submitted to IDEAL for revision (5 days in total) Early June 2023: Activity - Re-draft practice note; Deliverable - Second draft of the practice note based on feedback from Save the Children/BHA (3 days in total) Late June 2023: Activity - Re-draft practice note; Deliverable - Third draft of the practice note based on feedback from Save the Children/BHA (3 days in total

The Consultant will report to:

IDEAL Team Lead

The Consultant will work closely with:

The Task Manager for this engagement is the Senior Humanitarian Development Peace Advisor, with support from IDEAL Team Lead. The IDEAL Team Lead has the final sign-off on deliverables and invoices.

Required Experience & Skills:

5-10 years of experience in international relief and development either in a technical or management capacity (required). Experience with USAID Food for Peace and/or USAID BHA food security programming Experience in developing and deploying gender-sensitive/inclusive key informant interview protocols 3-5 years of experience in HDP programming environments with demonstrated capacity in understanding complex programming environments. Relevant educational experience in international development or a related field. Significant experience with research and learning documentation. Demonstrated excellence in written communication. Demonstrated cultural competency and ability to work effectively across cultures and backgrounds.Proposal Requirements:

Evaluation criteria

The consultant has the necessary qualifications and skills to conduct the assignment. The consultant has the necessary experience to execute lean assessments/research work including, but not limited to, computer –aided telephone interviews. The consultant has proof of successfully handling similar assignments.

Payment Terms and Schedule

The estimated project timeline is 22.5 days from contracting as stipulated in the deliverable table of this SOW. Payments will be deliverable-based, and invoice payable upon deliverable completed and approved.


Please submit your CV and a COVER LETTER explaining your suitability in response to the criteria. Please include a "COST PROPOSAL" in line with the expected deliverables and your availability by February 20, 2023.

Diversity, Equity & Inclusion
Achieving our mission begins with how we build our team and work together. Through our commitment to enriching our organization with people of different origins, beliefs, backgrounds, and ways of thinking, we are better able to leverage the collective power of our teams and solve the world’s most complex challenges. We strive for a culture of trust and respect, where everyone contributes their perspectives and authentic selves, reaches their potential as individuals and teams, and collaborates to do the best work of their lives.

We recognize that diversity and inclusion is a journey, and we are committed to learning, listening and evolving to become more diverse, equitable and inclusive than we are today.

Equal Employment Opportunity
We are committed to providing an environment of respect and psychological safety where equal employment opportunities are available to all. We do not engage in or tolerate discrimination on the basis of race, color, gender identity, gender expression, religion, age, sexual orientation, national or ethnic origin, disability (including HIV/AIDS status), marital status, military veteran status or any other protected group in the locations where we work.

Safeguarding & Ethics
Mercy Corps team members are expected to support all efforts toward accountability, specifically to our stakeholders and to international standards guiding international relief and development work, while actively engaging communities as equal partners in the design, monitoring and evaluation of our field projects. Team members are expected to conduct themselves in a professional manner and respect local laws, customs and MC's policies, procedures, and values at all times and in all in-country venues.

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