Consultant- Resilience & Crisis Analytics - Learning and Documentation Project-Remote

Programs Anywhere, United States


Description

About Mercy Corps:

Mercy Corps is a leading global organization working in more than 40 countries around the world. Many contexts where we work, such as the DRC, Syria, Yemen, and Nigeria, are embroiled in recurrent and protracted crises. Violent conflict, the effects of climate change and now COVID-19 are creating compounding shocks that disrupt local economies, livelihoods, and social structures, deepening crisis and vulnerability.  

Mercy Corps works at the nexus of humanitarian, peace and development assistance to support and build the resilience of crisis-affected populations.  We partner with communities to meet immediate needs, while also supporting local systems that help them to better cope in crisis, prevent its escalation, and ultimately advance future well-being.  Doing this effectively in complex and dynamic environments requires the appropriate allocation of resources, and highly agile, responsive, risk-informed programming. 

Background:  

Funding and programming decisions that can build resilience in crisis environments require rapid, timely and granular data, including predictive analytics.   Mercy Corps’ Crisis Analytics unit attempts to meet this challenge by integrating continuous field-based monitoring with secondary data collection, and analysis by subject-matter experts. The aim is to provide real-time forecasts of emerging risks that shape responses. Investments in better, quicker analysis that leverage technology and human capability can enable international responses to stay ahead of the curve and avoid being caught unaware in the face of crises spinning out of control.

Purpose/Project Description:

Mercy Corps is seeking a consultant to conduct a review and documentation of its Crisis Analytics work, to better understand where and how the platform is being used to influence funding allocation and inform program decisions in protracted and recurrent crises. 

The work will focus on where and how crisis analysis products and related information inform programming to strengthen local coping mechanisms, prevent crisis escalation (including through violence reduction), and shore up local systems that can support future well-being.  This can include, but is not limited to, using data to influence conflict-sensitive decision-making, inform local partnership decisions, determine location-specific approaches, support participant selection, inform activity facilitation plans, or determine how activities should be layered, sequence and integrated.  The most promising examples of the use of crisis analytics for decision-making will be documented in an externally facing case study. 

Consultant Objectives:

  • Conduct a scoping of Mercy Corps’ crisis analytics work to better understand its current application in funding and program decisions, with a particular emphasis on decisions that advance resilience outcomes 
  • Produce an internal brief report with summary of findings and recommendations and lead an internal virtual debrief session with resilience and Crisis Analytics stakeholders to discuss findings and recommendations 
  • Document promising examples of the use of Crisis Analytics to inform funding and program decisions that advance resilience outcomes, with recommendations to donors and implementers (final report/case study)

Consultant Activities:

The Consultant will:

  • Review all background documents related to Crisis Analytics and Resilience, including previous reports, thought pieces and briefs. (2.5 days)
  • Conduct consultations with core resilience and CA team members to understand vision for Crisis Analytics in resilience programming (.5 days)
  • Share brief stakeholder survey to quickly scope current applications of Crisis Analytics and team member perspectives (.5)
  • Conduct stakeholder interviews with key informants in 4 select countries (potentially Syria, DRC, Nigeria, Venezuela), including Crisis Analysis team members, program managers of humanitarian portfolios and resilience flagship programs, and Country Directors (3 days)
  • Provide a briefing on overall findings and draft internal report; select country for case study (2 days)
  • Share this briefing, as well as an outline, for the case study, to the Center for Resilience and Mercy Corps, with the Center for Resilience, USAID (1 day)
  • Conduct follow-up deep-dive interviews on the application of Crisis Analytics in select country (1.5 days)
  • Draft case study and conduct three rounds of review, including two with USAID (5 days)
  • Finalize externally facing case study and internal brief report with recommendations (2.5 days)
  • Prepare slide deck and conduct two final briefings (internal and external) with key stakeholders (1.5 day)

TOTAL: 22 days

Consultant Deliverables:

  • Internal scoping report with recommendations 
  • Briefing with initial findings and recommendations and outline for Case Study 
  • REAL (externally facing) case study, intended for donors and policymakers
  • Slide deck and (1) internal briefing webinar with stakeholders 
  • Slide deck of brief for webinar and external briefing with stakeholders

Timeframe / Schedule:  

  • Nov. 1 - Dec. 30, 2020

The Consultant will report to: 

Sr. Director of Global Resilience, Mercy Corps

The Consultant will work closely with:

Bresilience Research Director, Sr. Knowledge Management Advisor, Mercy Corp’s global crisis analysis team, Regional Resilience Director,  as well as Mercy Corps country directors and country analytics teams.

Mercy Corps Diversity Statement 

Achieving our mission begins with how we build our team and work together. Through our commitment to enriching our organization with people of different origins, beliefs, backgrounds, and ways of thinking, we are better able to leverage the collective power of our teams and solve the world’s most complex challenges. We strive for a culture of trust and respect, where everyone contributes their perspectives and authentic selves, reaches their potential as individuals and teams, and collaborates to do the best work of their lives. 

We recognize that diversity and inclusion is a journey, and we are committed to learning, listening and evolving to become more diverse, equitable and inclusive than we are today. 

Equal Employment Opportunity Statement

Mercy Corps is an equal opportunity employer that does not tolerate discrimination on any basis. We actively seek out diverse backgrounds, perspectives, and skills so that we can be collectively stronger and have sustained global impact. 

We are committed to providing an environment of respect and psychological safety where equal employment opportunities are available to all. We do not engage in or tolerate discrimination on the basis of race, color, gender identity, gender expression, religion, age, sexual orientation, national or ethnic origin, disability (including HIV/AIDS status), marital status, military veteran status or any other protected group in the locations where we work.