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Short-term Consultancy for
Senior Specialist for Design and Support Research/Consultations

May 2020

I. Summary

The document presents the Terms of Reference for the services of a Senior Specialist to Design a Plan for Public Policy Consultations/Research for Federal Governance Issues in Somalia (hereinafter ”Consultant”), on a consultancy basis, with the Forum of Federation. Working closely with the project team, the role of the Consultant is to lead the design of a research/consultations plan for the initiative described below. This aims to ensure proper application of the most appropriate, state-of-the-art methods for consultations with important stakeholders involved in federal governance debates in Somalia.

This assignment does not entail travel to Somalia and is expected to be conducted remotely (ie, using email, Google Docs, Zoom, etc).

II. Background

The Political Accommodation and Reconciliation in Somalia program focuses on two complementary areas that contribute to a more stable and peaceful future for Somalia. The areas are: 1) support Somali leaders and communities to design and implement arrangements that accommodate different interests in the federal structures of Somalia, and 2) support reconciliation and structures for peace at the district level.

Conflict Dynamics International (CDI) and its partner the Forum of Federations (FoF) seek to support the Federal Government, Federal Member States and all stakeholders in reaching greater consensus on practical and politically accommodating distribution of powers and intergovernmental relations, and begin to implement these, thereby reducing Somali citizens’ vulnerably to conflict.

For at least two years federal-state relations in Somalia have been at a deadlock. Indeed, there has been an even more longstanding paralysis in agreeing to basic federal arrangements to finalize the 2012 Provisional Constitution. To help build a stronger understanding of and national consensus on the long-term direction and critical design details of federalism in Somalia, CDI and FOF intend to develop a series of “Discussion Papers” (currently planned to be in a Q&A format). These are to be developed with inputs from federal governance subject matter experts but with the principal focus on the actual debates, issues, concerns and aspirations of Somalis. To ensure that the papers are grounded in the realities of Somalia, and to maximize their potential impact on political discourse and future negotiations, the consultation dimension of this work is as important as the subject matter content. It is also important to consider whether training (virtual or in-person) can be included in the process in order to strengthen the quality of inputs from the consultations.

Concretely, this initiative will initially involve the production of two discussion papers 1) Envisioning Somali Federalism (working title), and 2) Distribution of Powers (DoP) and Intergovernmental Relations (IGR). Subject to inputs from the consultant the basic steps are expected to be: (i) develop initial draft of the two discussion papers (led by project staff), (ii) consultations (to be defined) with a significant sample and cross-section of Somali stakeholders to gather data on their views, debates, concerns, etc., producing a findings report, (iv) drafting of the Discussion Papers based on the consultation findings and inputs by federal governance experts, (v) validation of the Papers, (v) translation, printing and distribution of the papers as well as development of consultation and training materials based on the Papers for various uses (TBD), and (vi) ongoing dissemination using the Papers as means of inclusive participation and effective political dialogue.

III. Objective of the assignment

Working with the project team and content experts, CDI wishes to engage the services of a senior specialist Consultant to help design and implement the best possible public policy research/consultation plan that will suit the overall objective of producing “Discussion Papers” that are genuinely and convincingly based on needs and views of an inclusive cross-section of key actors concerned about and actively engaged in federalism debates in Somalia, as well as inputs on best methods for ongoing use of the Papers to widen and enrich the public discourse on federalism in Somalia.▪In light of ongoing Covid-19 restrictions on travel and public contact, the plan should cover scenarios relying on different mixes of remote and face-to-face interactions.

IV. Tasks and expected level of effort for the assignment

Preparation – 3 days

Review documentation and conduct individual and/or group interviews with team members and provide a brief initial assessment report (2-3 pp) of the initiative’s objective, relevant research/consultation needs, expected approach, issues and options, clarification of scope of the assignment, and next steps for finalizing a detailed Plan (next step). This is to include options using remote technology as well as face-to-face tools and methods. Review with project team and make revisions as necessary.

Draft Research/Consultation Plan – 3 days

Develop a valid, tailored, innovative and state-of-the-art methodology and plan for consultation in support of the initiative, including but not limited to: rationale for selection of methodologies, identification of research targets, instrument(s)design, including but not limited to specification of research questions, data collection guidelines, documentation and reporting. This should include options with different scenarios ofCovid-19 impact (as delineated in step 1 above). Review with project team and make revisions as necessary.

Instruments/Guidelines – 4 days

Develop all related instruments, guidelines, etc. for consultations (pre- and post- completion of the Discussion Papers). Review with project team and make revisions as necessary.


Advise on an as-needed basis during collection and report writing. (delivered by email or teleconference). – Max 2 days

Review report – Max 2 days

Other tasks agreed with project team

V. Qualifications

  • Graduate degree (PhD preferred but not required) and/or other training indicating senior-level specialist knowledge of public policy research and consultation methods.
  • Demonstrated knowledge of and practical experience in using a full range of state-of-art public policy research and consultation methodologies.
  • At least 10 years’ experience as a specialist with progressively increased responsibilities in design and implementation of public research and consultation projects.
  • ▪Extensive knowledge and experience in use of remote technologies (mobile apps, social media, teleconferencing, etc.) for public research and consultation.
  • Experience in public policy research and consultations for programs related to governance, peacebuilding in fragile environments desirable.
  • Demonstrated strong skills in coordinating and working with diverse and widely distributed team.▪Self-motivated, well-organized individual that can guide the team effectively and efficiently.
  • Excellent writing skills.
  • Somali language skills desirable.

VI. Application Process

Interested candidates should submit a brief expression of interest including the following:

i.  Detailed CV

ii.  Brief summary (2-4 pp) of projects completed of similar scope

iii.  Proposed number of days for each of the tasks in the table above

iv.  Your daily fee rate and estimates for any other costs.

Please submit by 22 May, 2020 to Consult.Somalia@gmail.com.

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