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Study on best practices of social cohesion and social and solidarity economy in Italy

Posted on Jun 29th, 2020 in Humanitarian Aid and Development Aid
Location: Nairobi, Kenya
Contract: Consultancy
Salary: Competitive Salary
Deadline: days, hours

Role Purpose

With the adoption of the 2030 Agenda, all UN Member States together with the UN System and development partners at large have embarked on a major process to address the challenge of not only implementing the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) at national level but also locally. The real challenge indeed lies in transforming the aspirations of the SDGs into a reality for communities and individuals by supporting an inclusive and sustainable development of the territories.

The implementation of the SDGs requires an integrated approach that will allow to coordinate and articulate the action among local, regional, national and global facets. The SDGs provide a powerful illustration of the challenges and opportunities that cities and their surroundings present

It is only by considering the entirety of the territory, its endogenous potential, and the role and the relationships between multiple public and private actors, who inhabit it, that it will be possible to effectively implement the development goals and achieve a positive impact, going well beyond the traditional project approach and avoiding the risk of working in silos.

Advancing integrated territrial development will require empowered local and regional governments, together with other key local governance stakeholders; so that they can fulfil role as development actor by better coordinating and aligning development plans; strategies and interventions in their territories.

The implementation of integrated territorial development has been a central axis of the cooperation between Italy and UNDP during the years. Over the past decade, through the support of the UNDP’s ART Initiative, this collaboration has strongly contributed to the set-up of integrated local development systems in more than a dozen countries and hundreds of Italian decentralized cooperation actors have been supported to align their actions to the locally identified priorities and to have a strong development impact in the territories.

The Overall UNDP effort toward the SDGs localisation recognises that the challenges are often interconnected and mutually re-enforced. While providing clear pragmatic guidelines and targets for countries, UNDP also recognises that countries will need to be able to adopt these goals in relation to their own development trajectory, specific priority and characteristics as well as considering regional and global challenges.

UNDP would like to capilaze upon th elong-standing commitment of Italy to implment integrated territorial development initiatives in partner cuntires as well as its experience and excellence in supporting sustainable regionla and local development in its own territories.

Italy excels in pro,oting sustainable territorail development in its own territories. Starting from policies for territorial cohesion, Italy has developed and implemented numerous strategies fo rmore balanced and sustainable development, including through the set-up of a development and cohesion fund and the agnecy for territorial cohesion. The Italian government has made it a priority to respond to the development needs of its territories and to create the structural conditions for improving th equality of life of its citizens. The wealth of experience has the potential to also inform SDG localizing processes also within a development cooperation context.

Over the past decade, aware of the value of the experiences developed by local and regional governments and other territorial actors, UNDP, through the ART initiative and its Hub for territorial partnerships, has facilitated the sharing of experiences, the activation of dialogues, peer-to-peer learning that contributed to shape the development pathways of many territories. These territorial partnerships have been recognized as a strategic modality to deliver mutual benefits between all partners involved.

The coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic has unleashed disruption and devastation around the globe, bringing into focus our global connectedness and the interdependencies. Economies have slowed down; daily routines stopped; enterprises are stopped producing; millions of people unemployed simultaneously; and more than a hundred thousand lives lost, the most disadvantaged being also the most affected.   COVID 19 puts the territories and sustainable development pathways of the territories even more in the focus when searching for sustainable socio-economic recovery options.

UNDP would like to identify and systematize the most relevant and territorial experiences and policies as a strategic input towards UNDP’s country programmes.  UNDP hence looks to identify relevant territorial experiences, tools and methodologies that can support the localization of the SDGs through fostering social cohesion and equitable and sustainable economic development models like social and solidarity economy in its different forms

Accountabilities & Responsibilities

Overall Objective

  • Identify the most relevant Italian territorial experiences and policies as potential key enablers for localizing the SDGs globally, with focus on social cohesion and social and solidarity economy practices.
  • Systematize the relevant experiences and practices and turn them into policy and programmatic guidelines to catalyse and inform policy making and programming outcomes in third countries and territories.

Foreseen Activities

  • Elaboration of an inception report that presents a work-plan including information sources, applied competences, processes and tools, key outputs/milestones and calendar.
  • Preparation (based on existing literature, and the ongoing debate and reviews of emerging policy responses to the current crisis),of a concise but clearly structured conceptual and analytical framework that frames the focus research areas (SSE and cohesion practices) and connects them to the SDG localising context, with a specific view to their potential in contrasting growing exclusionary patterns and social and territorial inequalities as basis for more sustainable and inclusive recovery processes.
  • Desk review and preliminary mapping of the nature, magnitude and scope of existing practical experiences and policies, leading to the preliminary identification of a body of potentially relevant practices and related actors.
  • Selection and comparison of a number (at least 3 in each area, i.e. SSE and Social Cohesion) of relevant experiences and practices that would lend themselves to be systematized and adapted as applicable inputs for different contexts. This would include issues such as innovation, replicability, potential to catalyse SDGs localisation processes, institutionalisation, impact on livelihoods and access capacity of specific vulnerable categories, activation of multi-actor and multi-level territorial processes and dynamics, relation with integrated policy and programming frameworks, civic participation, trust and social capital.
  • In direct consultation (in the form of interviews and/or if conditions allow field visits) with relevant actors and key interlocutors (with different roles and at different governance levels) collect information and data to verify the relevance, deepen the understanding and profile the key determinants, features and implications of each selected experience.
  • In coherence with the adopted analytical framework, systematization of selected experiences though structured templates, as basis to develop comprehensive guidelines to inform policy and programming processes in other countries.


  • An inception report including methodological framework and work-plan (indicative 10 pages)
  • A comprehensive paper including a conceptual and analytical framework, an overview/mapping of Italian approaches and experiences in applying SSE and territorial cohesion in the current context 3 example of SSE and 3 for Social Cohesion, and a thorough description and analysis of selected practices based on homogenous criteria and format (indicative 25 pages)
  • Report on the mapping of relevant experiences (indicative 15 pages)
  • A set of 6 guidelines three for each focus areas for policy and programming support in other countries and territories (max 15 pages each)

Time frame and deadlines

We consider following working days as reference for applicants.

  • The study will start 2 days after the signature of the contract and the expected total duration of 4 months.
  • Inception report (7 working days after the beginning of the contract)
  • Conceptual and analytical framework paper (15 working days after the beginning of the contract)
  • Report on the mapping of relevant experiences (20)
  • The set of 6 guidelines for policy and programming support (50 working days after the beginning of the contract)

Drafts of the respective products will have to be submitted earlier in order to allow feedback and inputs by UNDP.

Corporate competences:

  • Demonstrates integrity by modelling the UN’s values and ethical standards;
  • Promotes the vision, mission, and strategic goals of UNDP;
  • Displays cultural, gender, religion, race, nationality and age sensitivity and adaptability.
  • Demonstrates experiences on territorial researches.

Technical and functional competences:

  • Professional in social, political, economic or administrative sciences;
  • Proven experience in investigation and deep knowledge of investigation methodologies and data collection tools (questionnaires, interviews, observation protocols);
  • Solid knowledge and experience in the establishment, consolidation and analysis of integrated and multilevel local governance and local development systems;
  • Knowledge of Social and Solidarity Economy Practices.
  • Solid knowledge and experience in decentralized cooperation modalities and practices;
  • Solid knowledge of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, and SDGs implementation frameworks at different levels;
  • Capacity to work in multidisciplinary teams;
  • Capacity to Program, plan and work for results;
  • Ability to structure a task in terms of the analytic/investigative process and to produce a well-structured output;
  • Openness to change and ability to receive / integrate feedback;
  • Ability to work under pressure and stressful situations;
  • Excellent communication and writing skills;

Knowledge, Skills & Experience

  • Advanced Degree (or equivalent degree/experience) in Political Science, Development Studies, Development Cooperation, International Relations, or a related field.
  • Experience: Minimum 15 years work experience.
  • Demonstrated capability as an effective investigator and researcher with expe­rience leading and conducting international development evaluation of large development projects in democratic governance and local development.
  • Familiarity with project implementation in complex multi donor-funded projects.
  • Strong competencies in Investigation methods for develop­ment projects; knowledge of UNDP’s results-based management orienta­tion and practices.
  • Relevant publications in the field of sustainable human development an asset.
  • Language: English will be the language in which the reports and products must be submitted. Fluency in written and oral English is therefore required. In addition, fluency in Italian is also required.

Job Expired

The application deadline date has passed.

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