Expression of Interest to join the Health and Education Unit Consultancy Pool

Closing date: 2 May 2016

General information

The Health and Education Unit of the Commonwealth Secretariat delivers outcomes under the Commonwealth Strategic Plan 2013/14-2016/17 related to the advancement of social development across the Commonwealth in line with achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in the health and education sectors.
The Health and Education Unit focuses on strengthening health and education systems to improve the lives of all Commonwealth citizens. The unit works with a range of partners and stakeholders on key issues that have an impact on human development by providing advocacy, training, technical assistance and policy advice.
These issues include:
  • Financing quality, equitable education and health services;
  • Eliminating gender disparities in primary and secondary education;
  • Promoting and working towards Universal Health Coverage (UHC), and strengthening health systems to address health related MDGs/SDGs and other health priorities;
  • Furthering the role of health and education to combat extremism.
This Communications Plan will demonstrate that The Health and Education Unit is providing thought leadership in the health and education sectors, while also delivering ambitious, cutting-edge projects that help to improve the lives of Commonwealth citizens.

General Consultancy Pool

The Health and Education Unit is seeking to establish a pool of specialists with expertise in Health and Education, to play a key role in assisting the Unit to achieve its strategic outcomes. The expert pool will be established for a two year period, and once included, consultants will be approached to consider specific assignments as required. These short term assignments may be home-based, or in any of the Commonwealth 53 member countries. An option to extend the pool of consultants for a further 12 months may be exercised by the Health and Education Unit.
Please note that being included in the pool of consultants does NOT indicate that work will be allocated. Quotations will be requested from the pool of consultants for each task, and a selection process conducted to select a suitable candidate.

Terms of Reference

Consultants may apply for inclusion in the pool by responding to one or more of the terms of reference below:
Terms of Reference: Category 1
Health & Education researchers/writers
  • Undertaking research and analysis, including leading to production of publications such as:
  • Conceptual documents
  • Green papers, white papers, policy documents
  • Policy papers and briefs and the presentation of papers and findings
  • Articles for websites, news articles, case studies, cameos
  • Project and funding applications
  • Provision of technical support both for programme and resource development, to the Health and Education Unit or direct with Commonwealth member governments, including conduct of needs assessments and delivery of training
  • Involvement with conferences, training programmes and meetings organised by the Health and Education Unit or partners
Terms of Reference: Category 2
Technology researchers/writing
  • Undertaking research and analysis, including leading to production of publications such as:
  • Writing of ICT concept documents
  • Writing of technical specification documents
  • Must be familiar with the Azure platform in a Windows 2012 R2 environment
Terms of Reference: Category 3
Technology development/support
  • Ability to develop and support in the following environments:
  • .Net based CMS (e.g. Kentico, Umbraco. dotNetNuke)
  • Blog Commenting Hosting Service (e.g. Disqus, Discourse,
  • ASP.NET 4.5 or above
  • SQL Server 2012 SP2
  • HTML5
  • CSS3
  • JQuery
  • XML
  • JSON

Work areas

Assignments will relate to one or more of the following areas within the HEU:
  • Education
  • Health
  • Knowledge Hubs

Education and experience

Detailed job specifications will be supplied individually for each specialist role required by the Health and Education Unit at the time that consultants with relevant expertise are contacted about an available position. However, the following general requirements are listed as guidance and will be used in the assessment of submissions for inclusion in the pool.
  • Appropriate experience (minimum 5 years in the field; kindly detail past experience as this may be used to match a consult to a task);
  • Appropriate qualifications for the category of work to be undertaken (indicate countries and institutions, qualifications, levels of qualifications; 
  • The following are also an advantage:
  • Specialisation in health and/or education issues, in either the development and/or application of policy, research and/or programmes;
  • A demonstrable track record in policy development, delivery of health, education or website portal technical assistance, or the drafting of publications or official reports;
  • Experience in working as a consultant, or in an advisory capacity, with national, regional, or international institutions.
Applicants should be able to demonstrate:
  • Expert knowledge of health and education issues;
  • Proven ability to think laterally and apply innovative thought to policy, structural and/or programme issues, and to develop practical recommendations;
  • Strong analytical skills;
  • Excellent drafting and presentation skills, including the ability to communicate effectively at senior levels, and to develop and deliver training on complex subject matter;
  • Appreciation of health and education issues relevant to developing countries, in particular small states and low- and middle-income countries.

How to Apply

Individual experts, think-tanks, consultancy organisations, academic and research institutions are encouraged to apply.
Interested individuals should apply with their detailed CVs outlining their educational qualifications, professional engagements, and a list of other, relevant work undertaken, e.g. publications.
Interested bodies should submit a prospectus outlining their relevant experience and achievements together with the CVs of experts who would work on assignments (CVs should be as above).
Applicants should clearly specify up to three categories in which they wish to be considered for assignments, according to the areas listed at one to twelve above.
For the avoidance of doubt, submissions are required from both bodies and individuals, where there is a possibility that the latter is able to work independently.
Workforce diversity is essential to the Commonwealth Secretariat. Suitably qualified candidates from diverse backgrounds are equally encouraged to apply.
Applications from suitably qualified women candidates from developing countries and Small States are particularly encouraged.
All applications will be handled with the strictest confidence.

Link to apply as consultant

Link to apply as organisation

We should receive your application no later than 17:00 BST on 2 May 2016.

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