Impact Evaluation Principal Investigator Consultancy, Suaahara II

  • Posted on 12 June 2019

Job Description

REQUEST FOR SERVICES to

HELEN KELLER INTERNATIONAL

Impact Evaluation Principal Investigator Consultancy, Suaahara II

(Nepal)

Established in 1915 with Helen Keller as a founding trustee, Helen Keller International (HKI) is dedicated to saving the sight and lives of the most vulnerable and disadvantaged. Headquartered in New York City, HKI currently conducts programs in 21 countries in Africa and Asia, as well as in the United States. Renowned for its reliability, efficiency and high level of technical expertise, HKI promotes the development of sustainable, large-scale programs that deliver effective preventative and curative services for nutrition, eye health and neglected tropical diseases. The hallmark of the organization’s work is its proven success in developing, testing and scaling-up health interventions, and integrating them within government and community structures to support and build local capacity and sustainable solutions.

Suaahara II is a five-year (2016-2021), $63 million integrated program dedicated to improving the health and nutrition status of women and children who fall within the 1000-day period from conception until the child reaches 24 months of age; the crucial period during which nutritional interventions have optimal impact on child growth and development.[1] In 42 of Nepal’s 77 districts, Suaahara II supports the Government of Nepal in expanding health and nutrition services. Suaahara II also works at the household and community levels throughout all communities of these districts to improve behaviors related to health and family planning; diets and nutrition; water, sanitation and hygiene including menstrual hygiene; agriculture/homestead food production; and integrated nutrition governance. Suaahara II collaborates with existing projects and private sector groups towards shared objectives. Suaahara II builds on its predecessor, Suaahara I, which was also a five-year (2011-2016) investment in many of the same communities and with overlapping thematic areas and intervention activities.

Prior to the start of household and community level interventions, an impact evaluation was designed for Suaahara I. The main research question of the impact evaluation was the effect of Suaahara on key maternal and child under-nutrition indicators (e.g. stunting, wasting, underweight, and anemia). The impact evaluation is a quasi-experimental design, with matched pairs of intervention and comparison districts and multi-stage cluster sampling for sub-district random sampling. The impact evaluation baseline survey of about 4,000 households with a child 0-5 years of age (half in intervention and half in comparison areas) was conducted in 2012. Given the earthquakes of 2015 in Nepal, the endline survey was canceled.

Scope of Work:

The Impact Evaluation Principal Investigator, working closely with the Suaahara II Sr. Technical Advisor and an Impact Evaluation Technical Advisory Group, will lead the Suaahara II impact evaluation endline, in line with the baseline done in 2012. Conversations will need to be held with Suaahara II Sr. Managers of each thematic area, as well as the STA and Deputy Chief of Party of Programs to understand the context and specific program impact pathways. Approaches should be proposed that answer the original research design and also provide insights on other areas of interest including: Suaahara’s effects on secondary knowledge and behavioural outcomes of interest; how HFP (a sub-set of overall Suaahara beneficiaries) families and communities have benefited from Suaahara and Suaahara’s effectiveness at reducing inequities in primary and secondary outcomes.

Three phases of work are envisioned for this consultancy, with the following estimated dates for each:

1) Phase 1: September 2019 to Feb 2020,

2) Phase 2: March 2020 to August 2020, and

3) Phase 3: Sept 2020 to Feb 2021.

In the first phase, the objective is to finalize the study design. For this, the original quasi-experimental design will need to be updated, with careful attention to how contextual factors have changed since the original design and this includes but is not limited to: 1) earthquakes, floods, and other natural disasters wiping out program inputs, 2) program expansion into 4 of the 8 original comparison districts, 3) age range of households in the evaluation versus program expansion timeline, and 4) interventions in comparison areas because of Suaahara spill over, but also other government and NGO activities. Most of this work will be desk-based and will include review of baseline survey and programmatic documentation, as well as the baseline survey dataset. Meetings via skype, email, and other means will be necessary to engage with Suaahara and HKI staff. A trip to Nepal (or other location TBD) will be required with the Principal Investigator proposing at least 2 study design options and engaging the team and an advisory group to finalize the design.

In the second phase, the objective is to finalize study tools and support survey implementation study. For this, the study tools will need to be updated from 2012, in line with the final design. Oversight of the local survey firm responsible for data collection during survey implementation is also needed. Suaahara II will sub-contract and manage this local survey firm (training, piloting, data collection, management, etc.) on a daily basis. Suaahara II will take primary responsibility for translation/back-translation and ODK programming of the study tools and local ethics approval.

In the third phase, the objective is data analysis and reporting. This consultant will lead the analysis, writing-up, and dissemination of key findings, in collaboration with other consultants hired to support this work and Suaahara II staff. A trip to Nepal (or other location TBD) will be required with the Principal Investigator leading a workshop to share the findings with the Suaahara team, Advisory Committee, and other stakeholders to facilitate interpretation and ownership of key findings, prior to a wider sharing.

Deliverables

  • Facilitate Design Workshop for Suaahara II Impact Evaluation (Nov/Dec 2019)
  • Final impact evaluation protocol (Feb 2020)
  • Final impact evaluation endline survey tools (April 2020)
  • Facilitate Results Sharing Workshop of Suaahara II Impact Evaluation Key Findings (Nov 30, 2020)
  • Report/manuscript and PPT slide-deck up of all key findings (Dec 31, 2020)
  • All final cleaning and analysis Stata do files (Dec 31, 2020)

Qualifications (Evaluation Criteria for Shortlisting):

  • Doctoral degree, preferably in Statistics or economics (7 pts)
  • Experience leading on quasi-experimental impact evaluations, with a preference for prior experience on multi-sectoral program impact evaluations (5 pts)
  • Technical proposal including design finalization ideas (5 points)
  • Previous work experience in Nepal or another South Asian context (3 pts)

The top three candidates will be shortlisted by the technical evaluation committee and will be required to provide a recent sample of relevant works for review. Based on a review of the relevant works and estimated costs, the technical evaluation committee will make a best value trade-off evaluation of the technical quality and the consultant’s daily rate, associated travel and incidentals costs will be made to identify the successful candidate.

The Impact Evaluator(s) will report to the Suaahara II Sr. Technical Advisor.

To Apply:

Qualified candidates should submit a cover letter, resume, a brief 1-2 page proposal including study design, timeline and budget, and USAID form 1420 to Suaahara.consultants@hki.org, noting “Impact Evaluation Principal Investigator Consultancy” in the subject line. The USAID form 1420 can be downloaded at the following address: https://www.usaid.gov/forms/aid-1420-17.

Applications will be accepted for at least two weeks from date of posting.

Helen Keller International is an Equal Opportunity Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, genetic information, disability, or protected veteran status.

We are committed to providing reasonable accommodation to individuals with disabilities. If you are a qualified individual with a disability and need to request an accommodation during the application or interview process, please contact us at the email above or:

Tel: 646-356-1789; Fax: (212) 532-6014

[1] Lancet 2008 series on Maternal and Child Nutrition

About the Organization

Co-founded in 1915 by Helen Keller, Helen Keller International is dedicated to saving the sight and lives of the world’s vulnerable. We combat the causes and consequences of preventable blindness, malnutrition and diseases of poverty with more than 120 programs in 20 African and Asian countries, as well as in the United States. Renowned for its reliability, efficiency and high level of technical expertise, Helen Keller International promotes the development of large-scale, sustainable solutions to some of the most pressing issues in public health. We deliver scientific rigor and effectively leverage donor dollars with our hallmark characteristics of grit, compassion and integrity. If you share these characteristics, we invite you to apply to open positions at Helen Keller International.

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