Senior MEAL Consultant

Closing date

Senior technical expertise in the process of developing PI’s Monitoring, Evaluation, Accountability, and Learning system

Duration: One-year process starting in June 2021. Time dedication of the consultant(s) will depend on each phase. PI expects the consultant(s) to be available according to the process needs. There will be some periods with non-activity meanwhile internal decision-making processes take place.

1. Background Information

Protection International (PI) is an international non-profit organisation that supports human rights defenders in developing their security and protection management strategies.

PI aspire to a world in which fundamental human rights and fundamental freedoms are universally recognised and respected by all, and where everyone has the right to defend these rights and freedoms without fear of threats or attack. Its contribution to that world is to support HRDs through comprehensive protection programmes.

PI has been working since 2007 with local partners in over thirty countries. Its programmes enable defenders to build their capacities in order to manage their protection effectively, to allow those that protect them to fulfil their obligations, and to convince other individuals and institutions with a stake in the protection of human rights defenders to maximise their positive contribution. PI’s DNA is in essence grass-roots, as its focus has always been to act from the territories’ perspective and for the defenders’ benefit, from the local to the international level, through a bottom-up approach. This grass-roots approach aims to increase agency for the most vulnerable defenders while contributing to the creation of safe spaces for W/HRDs to continue working on the ground.

PI has an average of 80 employees distributed in 8 offices worldwide: Guatemala, Honduras, Colombia, Kenya, DRC, Thailand, Indonesia and Belgium. PI working languages are English, French and Spanish.

2. Rationale

PI is in need of a standardised system to ensure the timely and accurate transmission of information between offices, thus allowing for knowledge sharing, and learning. Under its previous strategic framework, PI already initiated work on a tailored MEAL approach for the global organisation. However, under its 2019-23 Global Strategy PI is currently undergoing a decentralisation process, which demands a full revision of the MEAL Approach. As a result, PI shall undertake the design, development, and piloting of a Monitoring, Evaluation, Accountability and Learning (MEAL) system that fits PI’s current needs.

To this end, PI has developed a roadmap in four phases:

  • Phase I. Preparation, planning and design
  • Phase II. Development
  • Phase III. Piloting
  • Phase IV. Implementation

3. Scope and objective

PI is looking for consultants with extensive technical expertise in developing Monitoring, Evaluation, Accountability, and Learning systems to provide solid technical guidance and input for achieving the deliverables and the successful implementation of phases I, II and III of its MEAL Roadmap. This consultancy should consider PI transition to a decentralised organisation and other institutional aspects that PI is currently working on to improve.

Existing material will serve as a basis for preparing and organising key components, which will contribute to integrated planning, monitoring and evaluation for the organisation. Tools and processes should be assessed based on its relevance to the current PI’s Global Strategy and indicators should be reassessed.

Findings of the preliminary research and analysis stages will determine the overall approach and methodology and may impact the complexity of the consultancy. Due to this, applications from consultancy teams/collectives are strongly encouraged in order to assure that varying sets of expertise are available according to PI’s evolving needs and to ensure continuity of the process.

4. Main activities (indicative list and timeframe)

Phase I - Preparation, planning and design from a participatory approach (up to 3 months):

  • Desk revision of internal documents: review existing MEAL documentation and planning under the organisation’s previous strategy and 2020 paper on knowledge management and MEAL;
  • Assess the existing tools and capabilities as well as MEAL needs and expectations (at the Global Office and country office levels) through a participatory approach that may include (non-exhaustive): thematic interviews and/or focus groups/ participatory workshops with regional and global team offices staff;
  • Review outcomes and performance indicators in PI’s Theory of Change as noted in PI’s 2019-23 Global Strategy;
  • Based on the identified MEAL needs and expectations, draw conclusions concerning the most effective and realistic monitoring tools/methodologies;
  • Prepare recommendations on the outreach of the system and methodology in consideration of decentralisation logic and assessment of documentation indicated in the previous point;
  • Design specific training modules on Monitoring and Evaluation concepts, tools and techniques with emphasis on Results Based Management and Human Rights Based Approach;
  • Provide preliminary consultations of MEAL/data analysis software and ideal functionalities (in accordance with PI’s IT policy);
  • Continual monitoring/update of the MEAL roadmap and workplan;
  • Determine adequate timeline, budget, and HR capacities for the full process, but specifically for phases I, II and III.

Please note, between Phase I and Phase II, there will be an internal decision-making process about the nature and scope of the MEAL system to develop in consideration of deliverables of Phase I and recommendations by consultant(s).

Phase II – Development (up to 4 months)

  • Update roadmap with observations agreed with the PI MEAL working group**;
  • Revision and validation of outcomes and performance indicators as noted in PI’s Global Strategy;
  • Develop draft of global MEAL strategy and approach document;
  • Development of MEAL tools and protocols in English, Spanish and French, in consultation with all regional/national PI offices, with a focus on joint analysis and learning within the teams and partner organisations;
  • Ensure the validation of the MEAL strategy and approach, including outcomes and indicators, for all regional/national office contexts.

* The PI MEAL working group is a team composed of members of the Global Team staff. The consultant(s) will coordinate and work closely with the MEAL working group that will be the focal point for and stay in continuous contact with the consultant(s) to agree on the methodology and procedure of the consultancy.*

Phase III-Piloting (up to 4 months)

  • Develop and validate participatory pilot methodology;
  • Support to identify at least one pilot office (ideally two) to test empowerment monitoring, evaluation and learning approach, protocols and tools developed under Phase II;
  • Support PI MEAL working group and in selected pilot office(s) in the implementation of monitoring approach, tools and protocols;
  • Post piloting review and feedback exercise on monitoring approach protocols and tools developed under Phase II (incl. adjustments of tools and protocols as needed);
  • Final documents, tools and protocols are adjusted in consultation with the MEAL working group and approved by PI.

*Please note that during this phase, the consultant(s) are expected to support and observe the process, meaning this activity will not involve full time dedication.

5. Approach

Achieving the objectives for this consultancy will require a participatory approach. In particular the assessment of needs, existing tools and capabilities of all PI offices will require group and individual self-assessment through desk review and (online) interviews with PI staff. In general, the whole process shall guarantee appropriate participation and consultation with all PI offices worldwide, including discussions on language requirements and barriers. For this, the PI MEAL working group will work closely with the consultant(s) to ensure communication and coordination.

PI works mostly qualitative, with some quantitative data, the consultancy will require a creative systematization of comparable inputs and outputs. In addition, PI has three operating languages—English, Spanish and French—. The MEAL system should be designed to easily shift/compare between them.

6. Deliverables

Phase I

  • An inception report with the main results and findings of the consultancy, including:

  • Draft assessment and need of extent revision for outcome and performance indicators of PI’s Global Strategy;

  • Different options (at least two) of MEAL systems that can be implemented by PI (estimation on investments required per recommended option, scope of the MEAL system and how this responds to current capacities and the needs of the team) and if applicable a clearrecommendation of the optimal approach for PI;

  • Recommendation on MEAL/data analysis software in consideration of effective data collection procedures, including in volatile environments or with vulnerable populations and PI’s capacities;

  • Recommendation on training modules materials, concepts, tools and techniques on Monitoring and Evaluation with emphasis on Results Based Management and Human Rights Based Approach.

This document is expected to serve the decision-making process in PI and as a result, it should be developed with this objective in mind.

Phase II

  • Final MEAL strategy and approach document;
  • Final outcomes and performance indicators as noted in PI’s Global Strategy;
  • Monitoring and evaluation plans and reporting templates;
  • Creation of handbook for the Monitoring and Evaluation working group for using the M&E tools;
  • Conceptualisation and delivery of training modules/webinars on Monitoring and Evaluation concepts, tools and techniques based on handbook (1-2 webinars for selected staff members who shall transfer knowledge to country offices).

Phase III

  • Updated and validated deliverables under Phase II incorporating the results and findings of pilot phase.
  • Final report including a recount of the pilot process, feedback and suggestions received by global and local offices and how these have been incorporated in updated deliverables under the previous point.
  • Recommendations for the continuous updating of the MEAL system.

7. Specific requirements on the consultant(s)

  • Bachelor's degree in either social sciences, international affairs, international development, or a related field; Master's degree preferred;
  • Minimum 5-7 years of experience in planning, developing, implementing, and managing MEAL activities for an international Human Rights organisation (or a combination of education, training, and professional experience);
  • Profound knowledge and experience to mainstream “gender and diversity” in MEAL processes;
  • Fluency in English, both verbally and written. Working knowledge in at least Spanish and/or French is required. Translation/interpretation can be included in the proposal. However, it is highly desirable that the consultant(s) can be autonomous communicating in different languages without depending on interpretation.
  • Experience in project design, including crafting theories of change, creating logical and results frameworks, outcome mapping, outcome harvesting and similar methodologies/approaches to MEAL and complex planning, monitoring and evaluation plans; knowledge of participatory methods, and/or advocacy evaluation techniques preferred;
  • Experience in research methods, both quantitative and qualitative data collection and research analysis methods with a gender and diversity approach;
  • Ability to work remotely and to work effectively both independently and in conjunction with a globally dispersed team. This includes coordination with teams in different time zones;
  • Ability to multi-task, meet tight deadlines, and employ creative problem-solving;
  • High standards of integrity, professionalism, ethics, and respect for different cultures;
  • Proficiency with one or more data management and data analysis software platforms;
  • Previous experience in one or more of the thematic areas in which Protection International works, including human rights, freedom of expression, democracy promotion, civil society development, LGBTIQ rights, gender equality, and/or transitional justice.

Desired qualifications

  • Knowledge of and ability to apply different evaluation approaches and methodologies;
  • Experience as a trainer, preferably on MEAL;
  • At least 6 months to a year of practical field-based experience in MEAL and/or results-based project management preferred; especially in relation to human rights defenders;
  • Familiarity with strategic planning and internal policy development processes preferred;
  • Experience supporting organisation-wide measurement systems preferred;
  • Work experience even with Human Rights defenders;
  • Group/collective of consultants preferred to order to assure that varying sets of expertise are available according to PI’s evolving needs and to ensure the continuity of the process.

8. Timeframe and venue

In consideration of Covid-19 travel restrictions, the consultancy will be implemented remotely unless contextual conditions improve allowing for field visits. Changing conditions must be discussed and agreed between the consultant(s) and PI.

An initial roadmap developed by PI considers that Phase I-III will be undertaken in a maximum of 1 year of implementation, from June 2021 to May 2022.

How to apply

Proposals will be assessed on a rolling basis, so Interested experts should submit a proposal as soon as possible to detailing:

1) A preliminary proposed methodology (max. 4 pages). In case of a collective this shall include a description on how the team will function;

2) Profile of the consultants; specifically highlighting examples of other MEAL systems developed.

3) Contact details of two references;

4) Estimated working days and fees and calendar of activities.

Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis and the position will remain posted until a qualified candidate is selected.

For further information, please contact

Protection International is an equal opportunity employer. The organization shall not discriminate and will take affirmative action measures to ensure against discrimination in advertisements for employment, recruitment and other conditions of employment, preventing discrimination against any job applicant or employee on the bases of race, color, gender, national origin, age, religion, creed, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression.

Adhering to Protection International means to comply with our Code of Conduct & Ethics, Anti-Corruption Policy, & PSEA Policy.

Candidates’ applications whose profile do not match this vacancy’s criteria but matching criteria for other current or future vacancies will be kept in PI CV database and redirect accordingly.