Scope of Work – Senior Western Balkans Technical Expert in Tourism (Ecotourism, Rural Tourism, and Adventure Tourism)
The EDGE project is looking for a Senior Western Balkans Technical Expert in Tourism with a focus on Ecotourism, Rural Tourism, and Adventure Tourism. The position is a part-time consulting contract of a continuing nature and expected to be part of a series of sequential annual contracts. Applicants from Western Balkans Countries of Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, North Macedonia, Montenegro and Serbia are invited to apply.
The Economic Development, Governance and Enterprise Growth in Europe and Eurasia (EDGE) project will have three primary Intermediate Results (IRs) based on the Bureau’s Economic Growth Development Objective (DO): Inclusive, sustainable economic growth supporting intra-regional and Euro-Atlantic integration. EDGE will also seek to address current regional policy priorities through a cross-cutting IR of countering malign influences, corruption, and extremism. All activities are to align to the technical areas in three IR areas defined below:
IR 1: Improved Business Enabling Environment and Reduced Barriers to Trade
IR 2: Improved Financial Sector Stability and Increased Access to Finance
IR 3: Improved Competitiveness through Value Chains and Trade Promotion
Cross-Cutting IR: Countered Malign Influences, Corruption and Violent Extremism
EDGE will implement regional economic development activities in the Balkans (Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia, Kosovo, Montenegro, North Macedonia), Ukraine, Moldova, Belarus (UMB), and the Caucasus (Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia) through its “Core Component,” as well as through the “Buy-In Component,” which is a flexible mechanism that individual Missions, other USAID Operating Units, and other donors can utilize using their own funds.
GRANTS UNDER CONTRACT
Local Capacity Building and Greater Intra-Regional Linkages through Grants Under Contract (GUC)
A primary objective of the EDGE GUC Program is to build the capacity of local organizations to enable them to implement EDGE activities in support of EDGE’s IRs. EDGE will use a Grants Under Contract (GUC) mechanism for this purpose, to promote capacity building and sustainability of local associations and organizations, government entities, and the private sector. The GUCs will address local sustainability and capacity building when applicable, while contributing to the achievement of the IRs. This approach supports USAID’s focus on building Self-Reliance, in which Government entities, the private sector and other stakeholders assume greater ownership of development initiatives. The grants will support a variety of partnerships that will leverage both public and private sector resources. Grants must include beneficiaries or implementers in a minimum of two countries in the region in order to build partnerships and linkages among local organizations and the private sector to work regionally. This regional approach to grant awards is intended to allow for networking, information-sharing, knowledge transfer and joint advocacy.
Principal Duties and Responsibilities:
Under the direction of EDGE COP, the Western Balkans Technical Expert will apply highly specialized and technical research skills to the design, management, and analysis of the economic impact of existing programs and activities in the tourism sector currently implemented under EDGE. The Expert will also be expected to develop concepts for other tourism activities that EDGE can carry out with stakeholders and to lead the implementation of those activities.
The Western Balkans Technical Expert will perform the following specific tasks:
· Liaise with relevant stakeholders from the 6 Western Balkan Countries including USAID Missions and Projects, other donors, implementing partners, Government Officials, Local NGOs, and companies, etc. and build and maintain relationships in order to identify opportunities for interventions and generate ideas for activities that support the implementation of IR 1 and IR 3
· Keep abreast and inform EDGE of developments in the Western Balkans Region that are relevant to EDGE’s mandate
· In cooperation with the Sub-Regional Representatives, support EDGE efforts in the tourism sector beyond the Western Balkans sub-region, as well
· Design and lead the implementation of interventions that involve at least two EDGE countries to improve competitiveness of the tourism sector with a focus on Ecotourism, Rural Tourism, and Adventure Tourism and increase trade with EU and other markets, including compliance with EU standards and supporting SMEs to leverage opportunities from the EU trade agreements in the region. An important part of this work will entail coordinating with USAID projects working in the tourism value chain to identify joint activities that contribute to EDGE’s IRs and give the bilateral projects a regional dimension. The Expert is expected to organize at least three activities/events depending on the resources available. The Expert will prepare a written description of the activity/event and a budget that will be approved in advance by the Chief of Party
· Activities may include:
o Identifying and addressing skills, knowledge, and information gaps of SMEs in the Tourism Value Chain
o Improving the institutional capacity of tourism business associations, chambers of commerce, other private sector support organizations’ members- SMEs, spanning the export and regional trade process
o Supporting the digitization of SMEs in the tourism sector
o Proposing interventions that strengthen business service providers management and operational capacity
o Assisting Project stakeholders in creating new opportunities and establishing linkages to new buyers by organizing B2Bs, trade shows, buyer inbound visits, familiarization trips etc.
o Organizing and conducting regional workshops
· Under the direction of the M&E Specialist, collect information and data for EDGE’s AMELP. Prior to implementing an activity/event, the Expert will work with the M&E Specialist to determine M&E data needed and the appropriate data collection forms to be utilized. The Expert will ensure that the required data are collected from activities/events and submitted in timely manner. The Expert may also be requested to collect other data for EDGE’s AMELP.
· Under the guidance of the Grants Manager, facilitate constructive engagement with the EDGE tourism related Grantees, monitoring closely the implementation of the technical portion of the Grant and assisting in gathering relevant information and documentation from the Grantees.
· Provide technical assistance to tourism-related Grantees as needed which could entail formal or on-the-job training and mentoring.
· Provide written input and pictures for EDGE’s newsletters (produced 3-4 times/year) and other media channels which could include articles, success stories on EDGE activities in the tourism value chain, relevant trends, best practices implemented by EDGE or other USAID projects, events, etc.
· Submit weekly bullets on activities undertaken during the week and planned activities for the following week.
· Provide regular written reports and support the preparation of EDGE’s Annual Work Plans, Annual Reports, Quarterly Reports, Budgets, M&E reports, success stories, etc.
· Other tasks assigned by the Chief of Party.
· At least 5 activities/events developed and successfully implemented.
· A written report from each activity/event summarizing results (a template for the report will be provided).
· Data and other input for EDGE’s AMELP
· Weekly bullets on the work performed.
· Written input to EDGE’s Annual Work Plans, Annual Reports, Quarterly Reports, M&E reports, media communication, success stories, etc.
· Additional oral and written reports as requested by the COP or Grants Manager.
Qualifications and skills:
· Minimum 10 years of relevant professional experience in eco, rural or adventure tourism preferably related to the international development projects
· Prior experience with donors funded projects will be considered and asset
· Master’s degree in tourism, international development, or relevant disciplines
· Fluency in English, excellent writing and verbal skills are required
· Superb communication skills and strong interpersonal skills
- Detail oriented, organizational skills
- Strong computer skills (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook)
- Strong organizational and time management skills with proven ability to work efficiently under pressure
- Strong initiative, sound judgement
This position reports to the COP.
How to Apply:
Please submit the required documents listed below to the following email address: firstname.lastname@example.org
· Cover Letter
· University Diploma
· List of 3 References
NOTE: Due to the high volume of applications received, we will only contact applicants who are being considered. Thank you for your understanding.