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Voluntary Local Review Lead Report Specialist
Deadline for applications: 2 December 2021
Duty station: Prishtina (Kosovo)

VACANCY ANNOUNCEMENT

Issued on 17 November 2021

Functional title: Voluntary Local Review Lead Report Specialist
Duty station of assignment: Prishtina
Contract type: Consultancy Assignment (IC)
Duration of assignment: 7 working months
Closing date for applications: 2 December 2021

BACKGROUND
The United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat) is the lead United Nations agency for cities and human settlements. The agency is mandated by the UN General Assembly to promote socially and environmentally sustainable towns and cities with the goal of providing adequate shelter for all and sustainable development. UN-Habitat, being the focal point for all urbanization and human settlement matters within the UN system, has a role in delivering the 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda, adopted by Member States in 2015, specifically goal 11: make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable. UN-Habitat promotes good local governance, urban environmental action, access to affordable housing, sustainable human settlements development and inclusive spatial planning in Kosovo since 1999.
Three years after the global adoption of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development Goal the Assembly of Kosovo adopted the Resolution in 2018. The resolution endorses the Sustainable Developments Goals and Agenda 2030 finds Kosovo committed to the global goals. Kosovo’s aspiration to the EU integration process and the 2030 Agenda will create a context for structured and concise management of all policies – national and local level – leading to an accelerated EU integration criteria fulfilment through successful implementation of the SDGs and contributing to better standards for everyone living in Kosovo.
Kosovo has committed to the Sustainable Development Goals and contributed to shaping this new global agenda. Its commitment began with extensive public consultations conducted with the support of the United Nations Kosovo Team from 2012 to 2015, developed the United Nations Sustainable Development Cooperation Framework 2021-2025 for Kosovo and continued with an ambitious plan for the integration and implementation of the SDGs, in line with the National Development Strategy 2016-2021, the Stabilization and Association Agreement (SAA), and the European Reform Agenda (ERA).
The United Nations Sustainable Development Cooperation Framework 2021-2025 (Cooperation Framework) articulates the United Nations development system’s cooperation with Kosovo* institutions and partners over the next five years. Underpinned by solid analysis of key social, economic and environmental challenges, the Cooperation Framework aims to support progress towards sustainable development in Kosovo* anchored around the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in line with government and regional integration priorities. The process leading to the elaboration of the Cooperation Framework entailed extensive consultations with key stakeholders among government institutions, civil society organizations and international community in order to identify areas with the greatest potential for transformative and inclusive development, taking full advantage of the United Nation’s comparative advantage. Consequently, five catalytic development solutions for 2030 materialized, aligned with key areas of the National Development Strategy 2021-2030 and the Government Programme 2020-2030, as outlined below:

1. Accountable governance
2. Inclusive and non-discriminatory social policies and services
3. Resilient, sustainable and inclusive economic development
4. Social cohesion
5. Cross-cutting: Increased gender equality and right holders

To further support the measure progress in Kosovo towards SDGs and their targets and indicators, the United Nations Kosovo Team conducted a Rapid Integrated Assessment of alignment of strategic documents with the SDG. In line with Kosovo’s efforts to mainstream the SDG agenda at central and local level, and following discussions with the relevant institutions and stakeholders, the recommendations were grouped in three major categories:

1. Advocacy and coordination mechanisms for SDG implementation and progress monitoring in line with the SDG Resolution endorsed in January 2018;
2. Alignment and integration of the SDGs within newly developed strategies and policies at central and local level; and;
3. Advancing efforts to increase data availability in line with the international methodology for tracking progress towards the SDGs

Implementation of these priorities will be guided by the overarching principles of leaving no one behind (LNOB); a human rights-based approach; gender equality and women’s empowerment; (UNKT) will be focused on the provision of the policy advise, technical assistance, capacity development, leveraging partnerships and resources, social mobilization, brokering knowledge, and piloting and scaling up innovations based on evidence.

UN-Habitat’s Strategic Plan for the years 2020–2023 reinforces UN-Habitat’s position as the global centre of excellence on sustainable urban development, offering solutions that help seize the opportunities presented by urbanisation, while bringing about transformational change for the benefit of millions of people, ensuring that no one and no place is left behind. The Strategic Plan lays out a recalibrated vision and mission, and a sharpened focus. UN-Habitat proposes to serve Member States, sub-national and local governments, and other key urban actors in the pursuit of four mutually reinforcing and integrated domains of change:
1. Reduced poverty and spatial inequality in urban and rural communities;
2. Enhanced shared prosperity of cities and regions;
3. Strengthened climate action and improved urban environment; and
4. Effective urban crisis prevention and response.

To contribute to UN-Habitat’s mandate to ensure a “better quality of life for all in an urbanizing world” and help the agency to deliver on its Strategic Plan, UN-Habitat Kosovo Office in active partnership with the United Nations Kosovo Team will develop Kosovo’s first Voluntary Local Review Report as the first step of a process to localize the 2030 Agenda in Kosovo. The Voluntary Local Review opens avenues for local government in Kosovo to understand better their current standing in achieving the 2030 Agenda, identifies policy gaps needing attention, and giving them the opportunity to join the global conversation on sustainable development.

The Voluntary Local Review Report: VLRs analyze the SDGs for a specific local context, thus, a very important monitoring tool for their implementation at the city or regional level. The process of SDGs localization that starts with the VLR allows local authorities to identify their priorities and territorial specificities. When it combines a careful analysis of indicators with a participatory process that involves citizen and local stakeholders and coherence analysis of existing policies as a basis for planning and policy design, it also becomes a strategic planning tool.

To support the implementation of this project, UN-Habitat Kosovo is seeking a Lead Report Specialist, who will fulfill the following duties and responsibilities under the direct supervision of the UN-Habitat Kosovo Head of Office and Project Coordinator.

PURPOSE OF THE ASSIGNMENT
The general purpose of the VLR Lead Report Specialist is to provide comprehensive technical guidance throughout the first development of the Voluntary Local Review for one municipality (tbc) in Kosovo. The Lead Report Specialist’s main objective is to develop and draft a VLR Report.

SKILL SETS REQUIRED
Excellent research, communication and writing skills in the fields of sustainable development and localizing SDGs, economic development, environment, and natural resources; social and inclusive development; local governance stakeholder and civil society participation; ability to analyze and interpret data; strong knowledge of the SDGs; knowledge of relevant planning legislation in Kosovo at central and municipal levels.

MAIN TASKS
Under the general guidance and direct supervision of the UN-Habitat Kosovo Head of the Office and VLR Project Coordinator, the Lead Report Specialist will be responsible for performing the following main tasks:
1) Responsible for drafting the VLR Report based on the UN-Habitat’s and UN-DESA’s guidelines;
2) Responsible for the research of current trends in SDGs at the local level and preparation of at least three SDG discussion papers on social, environmental, and economic dimensions for the chosen municipality;
3) Responsible for the elaboration of SDG discussion papers, linking to the participatory process, and integrating the outcomes into the main draft paper;
4) Responsible for the systematization of data received from the VLR data expert, local government, and other entities;
5) Liaise regularly with the national, sub-national, and local government association(s) for inputs in the VLR preparation;
6) Responsible for implementing the VLR validation with local government, stakeholders, and experts;
7) Contribute to knowledge-management, communication, and outreach activities of the project;
8) Assist with translation and interpretation, both verbal and written, when required. Provide language quality checks of written materials;
9) Provide monthly progress reports to the UN-Habitat Kosovo Head of Office and inputs to progress reports for the Prishtina/ Pristina office; and
10) Perform any other functions and tasks which may be required by the nature of the projects’ activities.

DELIVERABLES AND IMPLEMENTATION SCHEDULE
The assignment is expected to be for 7 working months. During the assignment, the Lead Report Specialist should provide/submit:

# TASKS DELIVERABLES DURATION
 1. Draft outlines of all preparatory documents for conducting VLR Finalized VLR workplan

Finalized VLR report annotated outline

Stakeholders’ consultation plan

0.25 w/months

2.

Draft at least three SDG discussion papers Finalized three or more SDG discussion papers 0.75 w/months

3.

Develop first draft of the outputs produced First draft of VLR report with incorporated key messages 3 w/months

4.

Integration of comments from municipality, UN-Habitat, UNKT and other related stakeholders, including central level institutions, into the final draft of the VLR report Second adjusted draft of VLR report with integrated comments 2 w/months

5.

Review, integrate final comments and submit the final production ready version of the VLR and final report Final VLR report and progress report 1 w/month

The Consultant will be responsible for:
• Conducting and delivering activities and outputs as outlined above
• Demonstrating professional and ethical standards in conducting the tasks
• Performing the tasks in line with the allocated time-frame
• Informing UN-Habitat management about the progress of the assignment
• Delivering high-quality products

A monthly progress report should be submitted regularly to the UN-Habitat Kosovo Head of Office. A final report should be submitted at the end of the working period, detailing the activities, outputs, and key observations. Both reports should be in English.

PROGRESS CONTROLS AND PAYMENT INSTALLMENTS
The fees will be paid in installments upon completion and acceptance of the outputs as specified in section Deliverables and Schedule above. A timesheet must be submitted by the individual contractor, duly approved by the UN-Habitat Kosovo Head of Office which shall serve as the basis for the payment of fees.

DUTY STATION
The work shall be performed from Prishtina/Pristina with travel to the selected municipalities. Transport to and from work will be the Data Expert’s responsibility. Travel to the selected municipality will be covered by the project.

COMPETENCIES
Professionalism: Demonstrates professional competence and mastery of subject matter; – Ability to conduct data collection using various methods; – Conceptual analytical and evaluative skills to conduct independent research and analysis, including familiarity with and experience in the use of various research sources, among which electronic sources on the internet, intranet, and other databases; – Is conscientious and efficient in meeting commitments, observing deadlines and achieving results. Teamwork: Works collaboratively with colleagues to achieve organizational goals; – Solicits input by genuinely valuing others’ ideas and expertise; – Is willing to learn from others; – Places team agenda before personal agenda; – Supports and acts in accordance with a final group decision, even when such decisions may not entirely reflect own position. Planning & Organizing: Develops clear goals that are consistent with agreed strategies; – Identifies priority activities and assignments; adjusts priorities as required; – Allocates appropriate amount of time and resources for completing work; -Uses time efficiently. Communication: Excellent and effective written and oral skills; ability to persuade people with varying points of view and to present information in a concise and accurate manner, ability to clearly communicate links between the organizations.

QUALIFICATIONS AND REQUIREMENTS
Education and experience
• Advanced University Degree (Masters Level) or higher in the field of sustainable development, development policy, economics or social science and/or relevant fields;
• At least 5-7 years of experience with strategy development, policy support, monitoring and evaluation, technical support in areas of sustainable development at the local level;
• Proven experience of strong facilitation skills, analytical skills, report writing, and presenting in English;
• Proven capacity to coordinate multilevel governance coordination and cooperation and sharing of information between government agencies, the private and NGO sectors, and other entities;
• Proven experience in advising government and/or UN agencies on sustainable development policies, strategic plans, spatial development plans, or relevant;
• Strong capability to analyze policies, regulatory frameworks, barriers and the like related to sectoral sustainable development approaches;
• Knowledge of sustainable development concepts, principles, and issues and the ability to apply to strategic and/or practical situations, covering the economic, social, and environmental dimensions; and
• Good knowledge and experience working with cross-cutting issues for 2030 Agenda: Human Rights, Gender Equality, and sustainability criteria.
Language
• English is the working language of UN-Habitat Kosovo Office; very good command of English is required – reading, writing and speaking; and
• Fluency (reading, writing, and speaking) of at least one local language of Kosovo is required.
Others
• Good analytical, solution defining, creative and interpersonal skills;
• Knowledge and understanding of innovative participatory planning and urban design approaches;
• Knowledge of online communication, networking and collaboration tools;
• Capable of working in a team and undertaking initiative to ensure smooth relations and open communication within the team and with partners, incl. local level, and other entities, etc.;
• Experience working with the UN system is an advantage; and
• Valid driving license and the ability to obtain a UN driver’s license.
Special considerations
The candidate should be:
• Willing to take responsibility, act professionally at all times, and make sure tasks are fully completed;
• Be willing to work across the entire partner stakeholders geographical area, including temporary placements at other field offices;
• Sensitive to gender issues and issues of concern to vulnerable groups;
• Flexible and prepared to pursue goals through teamwork;
• Able to meet deadlines for reporting and all project work;
• Express enthusiasm and willingness to continue learning new skills and share experiences with other members of the team;
• Able to adapt to a multi-ethnic environment.

HOW TO APPLY

Interested candidates must submit an email quoting the post title and the duty station to the email address:    recruitment@unhabitat-kosovo.org

with the following documents/information to demonstrate their qualifications:

1.       Cover letter explaining why they are the most suitable for the work

2.       Completion of a CV in P11 Form which can be downloaded at: http://unhabitat-kosovo.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/08/p11_form.doc

The CV shall include information on the past experience in similar projects and at least 3 references.

3.       Financial Proposal. The offeror’s letter including form for the financial proposal can be downloaded at: http://unhabitat-kosovo.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/08/Financial_proposal_IC.docx

Deadline for applications: 2nd December 2021

UN-Habitat does not charge a fee at any stage of the recruitment process. If you have any questions concerning persons or companies claiming to be recruiting on behalf of these offices and requesting the payment of a fee, please contact: recruitment@unon.org