International Consultant - Statistical Reform, Phnom Penh, Cambodia Country Office

Contract Type: Consultancy
Closing date: 6 August 2020 - 5:00pm(Phnom Penh time)
Duty station: Phnom Penh

Closing date: 6 August 2020 (5 pm Phnom Penh time)


Purpose of consultancy:    To assist the Royal Government of Cambodia and specifically the National Institute of Statistics, Ministry of Planning (MoP) to assess its institutional and organizational capacities in statistics with a view of reconfiguring its institutional arrangements and resources and operationalizing the National Strategy for the Development of Statistics (NSDS) 2019-2023 through successive Action Plans. 

Background and Rationale:

Among the emerging national priorities is an unprecedented demand for robust, availability of reliable, quality, real-time and disaggregated data. This is not only important for evidence-based policy formulation and implementation but also ensuring the principle of leaving no one behind is realized in national development plans and programmes to help achieve national development goals, the Cambodia Sustainable Development Goals (CSDGs), Rectangular Strategy IV, and the National Strategic Development Plan (NSDP) 2019-2023, and advancing the implementation of the UNDAF 2019-2023. Consequently, this will also help transition Cambodia’s economy from a traditional to a digital economy with efficient, computerized and quality business processes.

Partners including the UN in Cambodia (led by UNFPA) have been supporting the Ministry of Planning and the National Institute of Statistics including Line Ministries to promote availability and utilization of data to better link planning and budgeting processes and to visualize progress on Cambodia’s SDG implementation. This endeavor has become the more pressing with the high demand for data with the SDGs and specifically SDG Target 17.18 that calls for greater collaboration and coordination of efforts with all stakeholders – public and private - and enhancement of capacity building support to increase significantly the availability of disaggregated high-quality, timely and reliable data, and furthermore the high level commitment echoed for data and statistics during the Annual Dialogue of the UN system with the Prime Minister of Cambodia in May 2019.

In order to support the National Institute of Statistics (NIS) to be able to achieve this and effectively implement the NSDS 2019-2023 adequate capacities and resources need to be in place notwithstanding any statistical structural limitations. This would allow NIS, Ministry of Economics and Finance, and Line Ministries within the NSS to evolve from a role of data producer to stronger coordinator, managing various inputs from the broader data ecosystem, ensuring data quality, comparability and harmonization. Meanwhile it allows these institutions to develop a plan that is properly costed to inform their national budgeting process. 

Towards this end, a comprehensive assessment is needed in order to comprehend the current institutional context and structural challenges around which NIS and the NSS are operating, and what investments and strategies are required to respond to the growing demands for more and better data in a digital economy. The assessment need to be focused on statistical capacity of NIS in respect to institutional arrangements, planning and budgeting, physical and ICT infrastructure for statistics, data production, innovations and big data technologies for dissemination, and priorities of investment. The assessment should draw on regional and global best practices in statistical management and governance mechanisms, including organizational transformation. Based on the assessment, a costed action plan for institutional capacity development to roll out the NSDS 2019-2023 is needed to ensure that strategic objective 3 of the NSDS is fully implemented and its outputs are successfully achieved. Thus, it contributes to three immediate outcomes of the data accelerator of the UNDAF 2019-2023. 

Therefore, a consultancy would be required to undertake the assessment and review the data ecosystem and capacities with an institutional focus on NIS and the broader NSS. UNFPA has been at the forefront of efforts to ensure that more effective coordination and support to NIS and the NSS is provided specifically through its co-chairpersonship of the Data for Development (D4D) Sub-working group. 

Scope of work:

(Description of services, activities, or outputs)    A lead international consultant is being sought to assist the NIS/MoP to “Assess and map its institutional capacities against best practices, develop a Costed Action Plan for Statistical Capacity Development, and make recommendations to inform future policy directions related to statistical development in Cambodia”. This will be instrumental for rolling out the NSDS 2019-2023 in Cambodia and achieving SDG Target 17.18. The development of the plan will be through a thorough consultative process with relevant stakeholders under the leadership and coordination of the NIS/MoP through the D4D mechanism and Statistical Coordination Committee (SCC).

Together with the lead consultant, expertise on data innovation may be drawn from different sources to complement the work of the lead consultant dedicating specific attention to exploring how to integrate big data and human centred design processes into the organizational transformation of NIS/MOP. This includes identification of potential pilots to build momentum and interest in incorporating new data innovations and possible entry points.

In order to design the plan more comprehensively, the selected lead consultant will also be required to review all relevant strategies and plans of the government including findings and recommendations of reports developed by development partners or UN agencies to ensure that those key points are fully incorporated into the action plan

In addition to the above cited overall scope of work, lead consultant will provide technical support and assist the NIS/MoP in the following tasks:

•    Conduct a mapping to assess current capacities and resources in NIS and across the NSS to deliver and finance the NSDS and NSDP through a desk review of documents and consultation with relevant NIS representatives, line ministries and relevant stakeholders including development partners and UN agencies to take stock of different perspectives and analyze the current capacity gap including physical and ICT infrastructure for statistics. This mapping and assessment will include technical and administrative capacities as well as the structure of the statistical eco-system. The emphasis will be in ensuring that the system will be able to produce complete, relevant, high quality and opportune data.
•    Review institutional arrangements especially funding arrangements to data and statistics in conjunction with national budgeting processes and MEF’s role with a view of identifying efficient pooled funding mechanisms such a centralized pooled fund. 
•    Develop a draft costed action plan with result framework and costed priority statistical activities, key roles and responsibilities of those institutions in consultation with NIS and circulate it to get more inputs before presenting it at a consultation meeting with stakeholders.
•    Integrate data innovation aspects exploring options for big data and human centred-design processes and/or pilots to be imbedded in the costed action plan.
•    Consolidate and incorporate comments/feedback received from the consultative meeting and take the lead to present the draft plan in the D4D/SCC meetings. The comments/feedback would be then incorporated into the draft plan before it is endorsed by NIS/MoP and also MEF.
•    Submit the Final Report and Plan and presentations to the NIS/MoP and UNFPA prior to a completion of his/her country mission.
Duration and working schedule:    •    45 Working Days 
Place where services are to be delivered:    The NIS/MoP, MEF and UNFPA Country Office. 
Delivery dates and how work will be delivered (e.g. electronic, hard copy etc.):    The lead consultant, drawing on expertise in data innovation, is expected to commence work on August 2020 and complete the assignment by November 2020. The suggested timeframe required for each deliverable is below: 

1-    Submit the Inception Report on planning of assignment. The report will include methodology, detailed action plan of the assignment, and proposed outlines within 5 working days before coming to Cambodia. The payment of 20% of the total lump-sum will be made upon receipt of satisfaction as per the assessment of the NIS/MoP and UNFPA.
2-    Submit the Draft of the “Costed Action Plan for Statistical Capacity Development” (English) with inclusion of a comprehensive costing plan, results framework. The payment of 40% of the total lump-sum will be made upon receipt of satisfaction as per the assessment of the NIS/MoP and UNFPA.
3-    Submit the Final Assessment Report and Costed Action Plan for Statistical Capacity Development with inclusion of a comprehensive costing plan, results framework by November 2020. The payment of 40% of the total lump-sum will be made upon receipt of satisfaction as per the assessment of the NIS/MoP and UNFPA.
Monitoring and progress control, including reporting requirements, periodicity format and deadline:    The Director General of the NIS/MoP together with officials from the Ministry of Finance will oversee and monitor the consultancy. UNFPA PD Programme Analyst and relevant DPs will also assist in monitoring the progress toward achieving each of the above said deliverables. 
Supervisory arrangements:     The lead consultant will work closely under the guidance and supervision of the Director General of NIS and her assigned officials. However, the consultant is expected to report his/her work progress to the Representative of UNFPA upon a request. In addition, the consultant is also expected to interact with D4D Working Group members and relevant DPs and UN agencies. 

The Deputy Representative of UNFPA will ensure compliance with the TOR and delivery of the expected outputs/results as planned. This will be also required to have frequent interactions with the consultant at various stages in order to:
•    Brief the lead consultant and provide clarity on the assignment; the process and deliverables;
•    Introduce and facilitate the consultant to work with stakeholders and counterparts if deemed necessary; and
•    Provide feedback and get agreement/approval during the progress of the assignment.

Upon completion of contract assignment, the Deputy Representative of UNFPA will certify relevant documents and evaluate the consultant’s performance prior a release of final payment.
Expected travel:    The assignment will ideally involve travel to Cambodia but if conditions do not permit then will be conducted to the most part remotely. However, he/she would also be expected to travel to Cambodia if the COVID-19 travel restrictions is eased.

Required expertise, qualifications and competencies, including language requirements: 

•    Hold advanced degree in public management, public administration, organizational management, public policy, economics, or related field in statistics is preferred; 
•    Have at least 10 years of relevant experience and technical competency in development/design of statistical strategy, data innovation, planning, programme/project management and M&E related to statistics.
•    Be familiar with Sustainable Development Goals and their metadata.
•    Experience and sound understanding of emerging statistical capacity gaps and issues in the country, especially with regarding capacity gap for data production to track SDGs.  
•    Be knowledgeable of the government strategies and plans including UN agencies, NGOs/CSOs is an asset.
•    Be able to travel to and meet with line ministries for gathering information related to the assignment;
•    Be able to handle and facilitate in meetings/workshops with technical and high levels of government; and
•    Be proficient in English.
•    Be available for working full time during assignment.
Inputs / services to be provided by UNFPA or implementing partner (e.g. support services, office space, equipment), if applicable:    UNFPA will provide appropriate working space with reliable internet connection and other administrative support for the consultant to perform the task during in country mission. UNFPA will organize virtual consultations should in-country travel not be feasible due to COVID-19 travel restrictions.

How to apply:

Other relevant information or special conditions, if any:    Interested candidates should submit application form and a completed UN Personal History (P-11) Form by email to . The P-11 form is available for download at 

We are no longer accepting applications for this position.

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