UN Women Job Vacancy: International Technical Expert on Gender - Hanoi, Viet Nam

Grounded in the vision of equality enshrined in the Charter of the United Nations, the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN Women) works for the elimination of discrimination against women and girls; the empowerment of women; and the achievement of substantive equality between women and men. The fundamental objective of UN Women is to enhance national capacity and ownership to enable national partners to formulate gender responsive laws, policies and upscale successful strategies to deliver on national and international commitments to gender equality.

Viet Nam has 54 ethnic groups, in which Kinh is the largest, comprising 87% of the total population of Viet Nam. The 53 ethnic minorities (EMs) reside mostly in remote and mountainous areas in the Northern Mountains and Central Highlands.[1] Although Viet Nam has made remarkable socio-economic achievements and met most targets of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), ethnic minorities still lag behind from the national averages in many areas. For example, while only 5.1% of the Kinh/Hoa ethnic population was below the poverty line in 2014, this figure was 29.1% for all other EM groups aggregated.[2] Among ethnic minorities, women and girls are generally worse-off than men and boys in terms of educational attainment, economic opportunities, and access to livelihood support as well as healthcare services. Despite legal guarantees of equality – in reality, customary norms and traditions often governed inheritance, succession and marital property relations, and familial property division disadvantaged women.[3] Limited access to land rights and property rights further adversely affects their access to credit as well as other economic and natural resources.[4] While 78% of EM women in rural areas are self-employed in agriculture,[5] only one in five of them have their names on land use certificates.[6]

An area of particular concern is the high ratio of child marriage among ethnic minorities and in mountainous areas. 29.5% of ethnic minority women aged 20-49 years were married before turning 18, compared to that of 6.5% among Kinh/Hoa women.[7] Child marriage closely relates to dropping out of school, childbirth at an early age, premature births, prenatal death, and reproductive health complications. Such harmful practice is tolerated due to the lack of economic and social opportunities for girls and the belief that young women are needed to undertake unpaid labour for household production and care work.[8]

These multiple layers of depravation and challenges faced by EM women and girls have not been comprehensively understood due to lack of systematic collection of information and data which enables disaggregation for gender analysis. At the same time, laws and policies governing ethnic minorities are overlapping, inconsistent and fragmented, posing a challenge for effective and evidence-based interventions.

In this regard, UN Women Country Office in Viet Nam has been closely collaborating and assisting the Committee on Ethnic Minority Affairs (CEMA) since 2014 for the development and implementation of gender responsive ethnic minority policies and programmes in Viet Nam. CEMA is a ministerial-level agency of the Government which functions to perform the State management over ethnic minority affairs. Under the project ‘Strengthening legal framework through mainstreaming gender into ethnic minority related laws and policies in Viet Nam’, UN Women is currently supporting CEMA to conduct a gender assessment of relevant laws and policies governing EM communities. In parallel to the assessment, the project will build capacity of the legal drafters and policy makers of CEMA to respond to gender-based needs and multiple and intersecting forms of deprivations faced by EM women and girls.

Objective of the Consultancy
The Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW) is the authoritative legal instrument on women’s human rights and a binding source of international law for those States that have ratified it, including Viet Nam. CEDAW calls for the elimination of all forms of discrimination against EM women and girls through, but not limited to, ensuring that they are protected from intersecting forms of discrimination and have access to education, employment, water and sanitation, and health care among others.

The consultancy is aimed at equipping CEMA with knowledge and understanding of CEDAW and other international standards on gender equality and human rights, particularly concerning EM women and girls; identifying gaps in laws and policies governing EM women and girls in light of their compliance with international standards;; and proposing policy change and programme intervention to address those gaps as well as harmful practices including child marriage and its root causes by introducing international best practices.

Scope of Work and expected tasks
Under the overall guidance of the Country Representative, the international consultant will work under the supervision of UN Women Programme Officer in charge of project management. The consultant will lead on the following tasks, while closely working with the national consultant and engaging with national partners such as the legal drafters and policy makers of CEMA, government officers, national experts and members of civil society organizations (CSOs) working on women’s rights and ethnic minority affairs.

Activities include but are not necessarily limited to the following tasks:
  • Develop research methodology, analytical framework, and report outline (home based) 
  • Conduct a desk review including the following elements (home based);
  • Provide an overview of the international standards[1] and good practices concerning the rights of ethnic minority women and girls, with particular attention to intersectional discrimination and harmful practices faced by EM women and girls; 
  • Review available documents, reports and studies on the situation of EM women and girls in collaboration with a national consultant to identify concerns and strategic needs of EM women and girls, and examine the implementation gaps of the international and national legislative frameworks; 
  • Conduct a gender and rights based analysis of the national legislative framework in collaboration with a national consultant to identify compliance gaps with international normative standards as well as overlaps and fragmentation within the national legislative framework; 
  • Develop recommendations for policy change and programme interventions based on the findings. Where applicable, a link between the recommendations and the Sustainable Development Goals shall be made. Develop interview questions for key stakeholders working on ethnic minority affairs and gender equality to obtain their views on the issues and to understand their capacity to apply gender and human rights based approach to law and policy making. The national consultant will conduct the interview under the guidance of the international consultant, UN women and CEMA. (home based) 7. Develop a training module on gender and human rights based approach to law and policy making and programming for EM women and girls, particularly addressing the capacity gaps of the duty bearers. With support of the national consultant, the training will be piloted in two locations with participants including key policy makers of CEMA, line ministries, provincial government officers and CSOs. The training will include a session on theory of international human rights principles particularly that of CEDAW and CERD, and a practical session using case studies in the Vietnamese context. (home based) 
  • Co-facilitate one training (two-day-long) with the national consultant to build capacity of CEMA officers and other key stakeholders engaged in the development of the Plan of Action (POA) on Gender Equality of Ethnic Minority Affairs for the period 2016-2020. The training will directly contribute to the POA development which is led by CEMA. (in Ha Noi) 
  • Provide half-day briefing for UN staff to introduce the draft desk review report. Develop a presentation for two consultative workshop with relevant stakeholders including government, CSOs and development partners to receive comments and inputs on the findings and recommendations from the desk review. The presentation will be delivered by UN Women unless the consultation is organized back-to-back with the aforementioned training. (home based)
  • Support CEMA and the national consultant to finalize the desk review report which addressed comments and feedbacks gathered during interviews and consultations. The final report shall include an executive summary no longer than 4 pages.
Duration of Assignment and Duty Station
The consultancy will be for a maximum of 16 working days between May and June 2016. The assignment is home‐based with required travel to Viet Nam. UN Women will issue Travel Authorization for the consultant prior to the travel dates and cover travel costs as per UN Women Rules and Regulations.

Fluency in written and spoken English is essential to be considered for the assignment. Additionally, qualified candidates shall fulfill the following requirements:
  • Master’s Degree in Human Rights, Law, Political Science, Gender Studies, Development or other relevant disciplines;
  • At least 10 years of relevant experience in the field of gender and law, particularly in applying international normative framework on human rights to national legislations, including EM related laws and policies;
  • Sound expertise on gender and rights based approach to law and policy making, particularly in regards to women and minority rights;
  • Prior experience in building capacities of government officers, law makers and women’s rights activists on international normative framework on human rights;
  • Prior experience supporting UN agencies for policy advocacy will be an asset;
  • Knowledge on the Vietnamese legal system will be an asset.
Application Evaluation Criteria** 

The applicant will be evaluated based on technical capacities (70%) and financial proposal (30%). Technical evaluation will be based on the following criteria stated as below.
  • Master’s Degree in Human Rights, Law, Political Science, Gender Studies, Development or other relevant disciplines (20 points)
  • At least 10 years of relevant experience in the field of gender and law, particularly in applying international normative framework on human rights to national legislations (30 points)
  • Sound expertise on gender and rights based approach to law and policy making, particularly in regards to women and minority rights (25 points)
  • Prior experience in building capacities of government officers, law makers and women’s rights activists on international normative framework on human rights (15 points)
  • Prior experience supporting UN agencies for policy advocacy (5 points)
  • Knowledge on the Vietnamese legal system (5 points)
A two-stage procedure is utilized in evaluating the submissions, with evaluation of the technical components being completed prior to any price proposals being opened and compared. The price proposal will be opened only for submissions that passed the minimum technical score of 70% of the obtainable score of 100 points in the evaluation of the technical component.

The technical component is evaluated on the basis of its responsiveness to the Term of Reference (TOR).

Technically qualified consultants may be selected for an interview before financial evaluation.
Maximum 100 points will be given to the lowest offer and the other financial proposals will receive the points inversely proportional to their financial offers. i.e. Sf = 100 x Fm / F, in which Sf is the financial score, Fm is the lowest price and F the price of the submission under consideration.

The weight of technical points is 70% and financial points is 30%.

Individual consultants will be evaluated based on Cumulative analysis, the award of the contract will be made to the individual consultant whose offer has been evaluated and determined as:
  • Responsive/compliant/acceptable; and
  • Having received the highest score out of a pre-determined set of weighted technical and financial criteria specific to the solicitation.
How to apply:

Application Procedure and Deadline
(Note: Please refer to the below link for more information)

Interested applicants must submit the following document/information (in PDF format) to demonstrate their qualifications

Technical component:
  • Letter of interest explaining why you are the most suitable for the work
  • Signed Curriculum vitae with contact details for 3 references
  • Technical proposal with suggested methods and work plan for the assignment
    Financial proposal (with your signature)
  • The financial proposal shall specify a total lump sum amount in US Dollar including consultancy fees and all associated costs i.e. airfares, travel cost, meal, accommodation, tax, insurance etc. There will be one occasion where the consultant is required to be physically present in Viet Nam for a minimum of 5 days.
  • Please note that the cost of preparing a proposal and of negotiating a contract, including any related travel, is not reimbursable as a direct cost of the assignment.
  • If quoted in other currency, prices shall be converted to US Dollar at UN Exchange Rate at the submission deadline.
    Complete applications should be sent to . Only applications with all items mentioned above will be considered.

    • Deadline for Application: 24 May 2016 
    • NOTE: Documents required before contract signing:
  • UN Personal History Form
  • Full medical examination and Statement of Fitness to work and travel for consultants with travel involved. (This is not a requirement for RLA contracts).
  • Individual subscribers over 65 years of age are required to undergo a full medical examination including x-rays at their own cost and obtaining medical clearance from the UN Medical Director prior to taking up their assignment.
  • Release letter in case the selected consultant is government official.