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Social Policy Consultant for Development of the ECOWAS Regional Social Protection Framework

Date : 02 May 2018 - 11 May 2018
Venue : Dakar, Sénégal,
Town : Dakar
Country : Senegal

Job no: 512562
Work type: Consultancy
Location: Senegal
Categories: Social and Economic Policy

Here to Apply

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1. Background and Justification

Worldwide studies reveal that social protection powerfully contributes to reducing poverty, exclusion, and inequality while enhancing political stability and social cohesion. It also contributes to economic growth by supporting household income and thus domestic consumption. Also noteworthy is the fact that governments globally, including ECOWAS states, committed through the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to ending poverty in all its manifestations, including its extreme forms, over the next 15 years, with social protection being one of the key pillars.

In the past three decades, several continent-wide deliberations have emphasized the need for Africa to initiate social protection schemes. These include the African Common Position on Human and Social Development in Africa in 1994; the Ouagadougou Declaration and Plan of Action in 2004 on the Declaration on Employment and Poverty Alleviation in Africa; the Social Policy Framework for Africa in 2008; the Yaoundé Tripartite Declaration on the Implementation of the Social Protection Floor in October 2010; the Social Minister’s Khartoum Declaration on Social Policy Action in 2010; and the Addis Ababa Declaration on Social Protection for Inclusive Development in April 2015.

The Copenhagen World Summit on Social Development (1995) recommended that Regional Economic organizations support countries in developing and implementing policies to ensure that all people have adequate economic and social protection during unemployment, ill health, maternity, child-rearing, widowhood, disability and in old age. In 2008, the conference of ministers in charge of social development also validated the African Union’ Social Policy Frame work in Windhoek-Namibia that highlights the necessity for Regional Economic Communities to establish a process for best practice learning and cross- border mechanisms in the sector of social policy, including in social protection.

All this points to a strong role for ECOWAS Commission in facilitating information-sharing and harmonization of policies and best practices for the implementation of efficient social protection systems regionally. Within the region, respective member states responses to poverty, vulnerability and social exclusion are diverse and varied. While a number of countries have developed social protection programs/policies tailored to their peculiarities and needs, the scope of coverage of such initiatives and their effectiveness in reducing poverty and fostering inclusiveness need to be reinforced through harmonized approaches and standards for better results. Many member states are reviewing and updating their policies and strategy documents. Extensive cash transfer projects are being developed, mainly with major funding provided by external donors. Discussions around universal health care schemes are also being launched in different countries in the region. A quick review of the present systems in most of these countries identifies management, policy and financing constraints associated with donor-driven implementing approaches and diversified concepts

definitions. The establishment of harmonized standards and guidelines for social protection systems in the region is likely to play a key role in improving the quality of programs and support the achievement of social protection-related SDGs in the region.

The development of an ECOWAS social protection framework is therefore key – a starting point for a collaborative agenda with member countries and partners and to maximize social protection as a vehicle for achieving equitable and sustainable social protection systems in the region.

The Social Affairs Division of the ECOWAS Commission Social Affairs and Gender Department, in partnership with UNICEF and ILO, is therefore recruiting a consultant to lead discussions with key stakeholders on the development of a social protection framework to be validated by member states.

2. Purpose and Objective

2.1. Objectives of the Consultancy:

  • To assess gaps in existing social protection policies and strategy documents in Member States of ECOWAS in relation with African and international standards
  • To set regional standards and guidelines for social protection policies and strategies in ECOWA

2.2. Outcomes

  • The ECOWAS Region has a validated Social protection framework that underlines minimum social protection policies and strategy standards for state members.
  • ECOWAS member states have appropriate social protection policies and strategies that comply with regional and international set standards.

3. Scope of the review and Technical Approach

  1. Review of concepts and definitions related to social protection in the region
  2. Mapping of existing social protection policies in the region, constrains and lessons learned
  3. Desk review of social protection tools used in designing policy documents and social protection programs in the region
  4. Assessment of the sustainability of government funding for social protection
  5. Review the expectation of countries for the role of the ECOWAS in the development of countries’ social protection systems

4. Activities, Tasks, Outputs and Deliverables

4.1. Main tasks/responsibilities:

  1. Conduct literature review and a situational analysis of existing social protection policies/strategies in ECOWAS Member States with a view to identifying gaps and levels of compliance with international standards among others:
  2. Conduct a desk review of international principles, standards and tools for social protection frameworks and identify what exists at African Union level, including traditional solidarity mechanisms.
  3. Review the expectations of countries for the ECOWAS’ role in reinforcing countries’ social protection systems (to include field visits in 2 countries for face to face discussions; stakeholder consultations; liaison with the Social Affairs Division, Social Affairs & Gender Department of the ECOWAS Commission and UNICEF throughout consultancy).
  4. Mapping of existing social protection programmes being implemented within ECOWAS Commission Directorates, and other ECOWAS institutions to avoid duplication and build synergy:
  5. Based on desk review findings and lessons learned, design a social protection framework for ECOWAS.

4.2. Deliverables :

The consultant will provide an overall picture of social protection policies and strategy documents and lessons learned in the ECOWAS region, through the following deliverables:

  1. A summary desk review report of countries social protection policies and strategy documents, challenges and lessons learned, and recommendations for the ECOWAS’ role in supporting social protections systems in member states countries and monitoring progress towards set targets
  2. A social protection Framework for the ECOWAS, with clear insight of harmonized guiding principles, objectives, concept definitions and minimum standards for social protection policies and programs in the region
  3. Presentation of the final report (Framework and Desk review report) to UNICEF (Social Policy regional advisor) for technical validation, in consultation with the Social Affairs Division, Gender and Social Affairs Department of the ECOWAS Commission and other social protection stakeholders in the region.

5. Management, Organization and Timeframe

The Estimated timeframe is 35 working days, with overlapping activities during the implementation (May / June 2018)

  • Discussion of the TOR & finalization of the contact => Month 1
  • Literature review and a situational analysis of existing social protection policies/strategies (8 working days) =>Month 1
  • Field visits in 2 selected countries (Senegal, and Nigeria) & stakeholders consultation (8 working days) => Month 1 / Month 2
  • Desk review of international principles, standards and tools for social protection frameworks (4 working days) => Month 1
  • Mapping of existing social protection programmes being implemented within Directorates in the ECOWAS Commission and other ECOWAS institutions (4 working days) => Month1
  • Desk review report (4 working days) => Month 2
  • First draft of the protection framework for the ECOWAS (5 working days) => Month 2
  • Presentation of the final report (Framework and Desk review report) (2 working days) => Month 2

6. Supervision

The consultant will work under the supervision of UNICEF (Regional Advisor, Economic & Social Policy, UNICEF WCARO), in consultation with the ECOWAS Commission (Chief, Social Affairs Division, within the Social Affairs and Gender Dept.)

7. Qualifications and Specialized Knowledge/experience required

It is proposed that the scoping study will be conducted by an international consultant, who could seek support from national consultants or another international consultant.

7.1. Specific qualifications and work experience:

  • Advanced degree, Masters, or PhD in related subject area (Social Policy and Planning, Economics, Public Economics, Social Sciences, Development Studies, or related field)
  • At least 12 – 15 years progressively responsible experience including evaluative and analytical work in the area of social policy / social protection at a regional or international level
  • Experience in working on non-contributory social protection agenda in ECOWAS region
  • Knowledge of current evaluative and analytical literature on Social protection
  • Excellent English and French speaking and writing skills
  • Excellent and proven research skills including development and application of analytical frameworks and tools and production of analytical papers
  • Excellent interviewing capacity
  • Excellent facilitation skills

7.2. Shortlisting criteria:

  • Educational Qualifications (20%)
  • Directly relevant work experience in conducting social protection related research (25%)
  • Evidence of exemplary drafting skills (25%)
  • Excellent Presentation Skills (15%)
  • Demonstration of in-depth knowledge of the social context in the West Africa region (15%)

8. Conditions of Work

The consultant is expected to use his own computer.

The consultant will work from his home country. UNICEF and ECOWAS will facilitate field visits (2 countries), skype calls and other contacts.

UNICEF and ECOWAS will also support in providing work related documents and reports to the consultant.

9. UNICEF recourse in case of unsatisfactory performance:

Payment will only be made for work endorsed and approved by UNICEF WCARO.

10. Competencies:

UNICEF’s core values of Commitment, Diversity and Integrity and core competencies in Communication, Working with People and Drive for Results.

The technical competencies required for this post are….

View our competency framework at

UNICEF is committed to diversity and inclusion within its workforce, and encourages all candidates, irrespective of gender, nationality, religious and ethnic backgrounds, including persons living with disabilities, to apply to become a part of the organization.


Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted and advance to the next stage of the selection process.

Candidates are invited to upload their updated CV through TMS.

Advertised: 25 Apr 2018 Greenwich Standard Time
Applications close: 11 May 2018 12:00 AM Greenwich Standard Time

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