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TERMS OF REFERENCE FOR SSTC WRITERS

RFP-0161-M&E-2020

Synopsis of the Request for Proposal

Solicitation Reference No. RFP0161-M&E-2020
Title of Solicitation Technical Writer South-South Triangular Cooperation 2020
Issuing Office & Address Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA) Website: www.agra.org
Point of contact for clarifications, questions and ammendments AGRA General Procurement, Procurement@agra.org
Email Address for submission of Proposals/ Quotes AGRA General Procurement, Procurement@agra.org
Solicitation Issue Date April 4th  2020 East African Time.
Deadline for submission questions and clarifications April 13th, 2020 5:00PM, East African Time.
Deadline for Answering questions and clarifications April 15th, 2020 5:00PM, East African Time.
Deadline for Submission of Proposals April 20th, 2020 5:00PM, East African Time. Please include the subject line “RFP-0161-M&E-2020” of the email
Anticipated Award Type CONSULTANCY AGREEMENT
 Evaluation Criteria Bidder Must provide the below listed information   Bidder Must provide the below listed information:  Mandatory Eligibility Requirement Company profileTrading license or certificate of incorporation TAX clearance certificates Evaluation Criteria Organizational Capacity: ………………….. ………………………………….15%General experience and experience in writing technical material on Africa’s agriculture and economic development:………………………………………………………………………….25%Proposed methodology and approach criteria: …………………………….20% Experience and Qualification of key personnel: ………………………….40%              Total: ………………………………………………………………………………….100% NB. The minimum technical score shall be 75% Technical weight: 70% Financial weight: 30%


  1. Background

Established in 2006, AGRA is an African-led, Africa-based and farmer-centered institution working to put smallholder farmers at the center of the continent’s growing economy by transforming their farming from a solitary struggle to survive to a business that thrives.

Working in collaboration with our partners—including African governments, researchers, development partners, the private sector and civil society— AGRA’s work primarily focuses on smallholder farmers – men and women who typically cultivate staple crops on two hectares or less.

In the current strategy, AGRA is supporting 11 African countries and 30 million smallholder farm households to increase their incomes and improve their food security. Under this strategy, AGRA will deliver through an approach that simultaneously catalyses change at farmer level, strengthens input and output market systems and puts government at the centre to enable and champion private-sector-led agricultural growth at national level.

  • Objective

AGRA has partnered with The International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) to identify, document, and promote the uptake of 25 private sector-related innovative rural development solutions in Africa.  The goal of this program is to leverage the South-South Triangular Cooperation (SSTC) to boost rural transformation through solutions that work in Africa, Asia, and the Pacific.

For this programme, a rural development solution is an initiative that solves specific challenges in the rural environment. It is a tool that can be used and re-used to address common issues like resource management, marginalization of rural communities, financing concerns, erosion, pollution, financial stress and the effects of climate change. It can be a technology, such as a sustainable energy source, a financial scheme that gives rural people access to credit or savings, or a process that supports rural businesses, like enterprise support centres, or training programmes.  

The identified solutions will be incorporated into IFAD and AGRA programmes, uploaded onto IFAD’s “Rural Solutions Portal” (https://ruralsolutionsportal.org/), and showcased at forums like the African Green Revolution Forum to encourage adoptation and scaling up. This initiative is, therefore, designed to deliver multiplier effects through indirect target groups who will be reached through the portal and other platforms including governments, development partners, SMEs, women and youth in the selected regions and globally, and who can adapt the solutions to their own contexts.

These initiative will be delivered through three distinct but interrelated components;

  1. Identify innovative solutions with potential for replication in different context.  AGRA will carry out this work with both breadth and depth of coverage of rural solutions by identifying solutions from four broad thematic areas;
  2. Input system development (e.g. research and development, seed systems development, fertilizer systems development, innovations for input adoption through private business models, etc.).
  3. Policy (e.g. solutions in policy sequencing, land registration and online land rental market and agricultural parks among other things).
  4. Small machinery and mechanization (e.g. pre-production and post-harvest tools and equipment and irrigation technologies).
  5. Information Communication Technology (e.g. solutions in e-commerce enabled value chain development, digital-enabled extension, use of satellite imagery or drones for monitoring & information systems).
  6. Knowledge Management and Communication: AGRA will develop a suite of knowledge products and communication materials including journals, white papers and videos for use in creating awareness about the identified and documented solutions.
  7. Promotion and uptake: AGRA will showcase identified and documented solutions at the annual African Green Revolution Forum (AGRF) to create awareness about the solution and promote their adoption and uptake.     
  • The Scope

Working closely with the AGRA project team and partners,  the consultant will lead the identification, analysis and documentation of rural solutions across Africa against  an agreed selection criteria that considers the following basic elements:

  • RELIABILITY

The solution has been tried and tested, producing good results. In the case of an innovation that has not yielded clear results yet, the expected results should be clear, tangible and concrete on food security, increased incomes, contribution to agricultural sector

  • RURAL DIMENSION

The solution needs to be focused on solving a specific problem/challenge in rural areas, e.g. for the smallholder farmer, the rural small business or the fisher folk.

  • REPRODUCIBILITY

The solution can be re-used, adapted and adopted by others in similar socio-economic or environmental situations.

In addition:

After making sure solutions respond to the three basic criteria above, prior to being uploaded to the Portal, they undergo a thorough vetting process that makes sure they address the following questions:

  • Relevance. Does the solution address a clearly articulated development challenge?
  • Effectiveness/efficacy. Does the solution actually solve the problem/challenge? (i.e., does it remove the constraint? Does it actually help the target group address the development challenge they face?)
  • Impact potential on rural poverty. Does the solution effectively address a specific challenge related to rural poverty reduction within the target group? Does it have the potential to improve the living conditions of the target group, addressing rural poverty in the area where it is implemented?
  • Link to public goods. Can the solution address challenges associated with regional or global public goods (e.g., adaptation to climate change, water management, etc.)?
  • Replicability in other development contexts. Is the solution of broad applicability/utility to different and diverse contexts? Does it work only within a specific natural or socio-economic environment or can it be used also somewhere else?
  • Replicability in other countries. Is the solution of broad applicability/utility to different countries? Does it work only in the country where it has been implemented?
  • Scaling up. Has the solution the potential for ‘scaling up’? Can it be replicated (in the same context or elsewhere) and scaled up?
  • Innovation. Is the solution featuring new technology, new business model or new implementation approach – institutional, process-related, or technical?
  • Sustainability. Is the solution sustainable, whether in financial terms (cost-effectiveness) or in broader social, political, or environmental terms?
  • Private sector. Is there private sector engagement in the solution?
  • Communications and knowledge management. Has the solution generated a broad body of literature or communication products? Is this body of literature appropriate for uploading the solution onto a web portal?

The consultant  will also provide technical expertise and guidance in identifying the solutions in the county(ies), organizing  stakeholders’ engagement to sensitize comunities on this program,  production of knowledge products for these solutions including but not limited to white papers, research journals, videos, photos etc.  This assignment will involve field work.

The consultant  will be expected to collaboratively work with AGRA, knowledge managment lead, communication team, country teams and technical staff, as well as AGRA partners to document the selected solutions using a predetermined template. Specifically,

  • Identification, analysis and documentation of rural development solutions in Africa
  • Documentation of Knowledge Products
  • Organizing stakeholders’ engagement meetings in the country(ies)
  • Co-define the most suitable knowledge approach (e.g. book, white papers, research journals,   video, photos etc.,) for packaging solutions with AGRA and African partners. 
  • Assist AGRA with ongoing technical expertise and backstopping as AGRA packages the solutions into knowledge products in the form of book, white papers, video, photo exhibit, etc.

Key activities of the assignment will include:

  1. Participate in the inception meeting that will discuss this project in detail and deliver a detailed workplan with clear timelines and methodilogy.
  2. Conduct indepth research to develop a longlist of potential solutions and follow up with the solutions owners for more details.
  3. Produce a longlist of  solutions using the agreed template for discussion with the project team.
  4. Deliver the documented solutions to AGRA at an agreed time and in the right format
  5. Guide the development of related knowledge and communications products.
  6. Developing communication material such as videos, photo series
  • Deliverables:
  • Inception report
  • Long list of 20 solutions
  • 10 documented solutions approved by AGRA
  • Duration:

The assignment will last for a period of four (4) months.

  • Reporting arrangements

The consultant shall report to the Head of M&E who will assign all activities under the contract and approve all deliverables and invoices.

  • Evaluation Criteria
  • Organizational Capacity :………………….. ………………………………………….10%
    • Company profile and company accreditations
  • General experience and experience in writing technical material on Africa’s agriculture and economic development:…………………………………………..30%
    • experience in related services or projects, experience in the region, number of years in business and client portfolio
  • Proposed methodology and approach criteria:…………………………………20%
    • understanding the project/assignment requirements, practicality of the proposed methodology relative to the context of the service, proposed work plan, staffing schedule, risk assessment and mitigation strategies integrated into the service, planning, appropriateness of the implementation schedule to the project timelines and project quality assurance measures
  • Experience and Qualification of key personnel :……………………………….40%

Team leader and key staff shall possess the following:

  • Masters or Bachelors degree in agricultural economics, rural development, communication
  • 5 years of demonstrated minimum experience in writing technical material on Africa’s agriculture and economic development.
  • Wide and proven experience in documentation of agricultural transformation in Africa
  • Exemplary analytical,  writing and editing skills
  • Proven ability to conceptualize, plan and execute ideas as well as transfer knowledge and skills.
  • Excellent written, oral and comprehension command of English. Knowledge of French is an added advantage.
  • Demonstrated ability to work independently and manage multiple projects and deadlines simultaneously with a sense of urgency;
  • Ability to organize, manage and facilitate stakeholder engagements

             Total :……………………………………………………………………………………….100%

NB:

  • Only proposals above 75% shall be considered for financial evaluation
  • Technical weight shall be evaluated out of  70% and
  • Financial proposals sjhall be evaluated out of 30%
  • APPLICATION SUBMISSION REQUIREMENTS

The proposal should include:

  1. Technical Proposal
  2. Company profile and company accreditations
  3. Proposed methodology and approach
  4. Proposed key staff including their CVs
  5. Report writing skills (at least two sample reports from previous studies will be required)
  6. Relevant experience including list of clients
  7. Current company registration documents/certificate of incorporation
  • Financial Proposal
  • A breakdown of the financial proposal in USD indicating daily rate for each of the proposed experts, time input and all applicable reimbursable expenses (international and/or local transport, accommodation as applicable);
  • All applicable taxes (VAT and withholding taxes) should be quoted separately;
  • If the financial proposal is silent on taxes, AGRA shall assume that these are inclusive;
  • Other costs, e.g. accommodation, travel, support staff, printing and other incidental costs will be reimbursed based on the actual costs incurred.
  • Use the template provided under annex 1 for the financial proposal
  • FOR PREPARATIONS AND SUBMISSION OF PROPOSALS
  • The proposals SHALL be submitted to procurement@agra.org by deadline indicated in the synopsis
  • The proposal and ALL Attachments submitted via email SHALL NOT exceed 10MB
  • VALIDITY of the proposal shall be for a period of 90 days from the date of bid closure.
  • Financial proposal shall be sent as a separate attachment and MUST be password protected. The password shall be requested from companies meeting the minimum technical score

ANNEX 1: Financial proposal template

  1. Financial proposal Form: Summary of Costs
Item Cost  
 
{Insert Foreign Currency # 1} USD value Total cost
Cost of the Financial Proposal, including      
(1) Remuneration (from table A)      
(2)Reimbursables (from table C)      
Total Cost of the Financial Proposal:        
Indirect Local Tax Estimates – to be discussed and finalized at the negotiations if the Contract is awarded
{insert type of tax}      
Total Estimate for Indirect Local Tax:          


  •  Financial proposal Form: Breakdown of Remuneration

Provide a breakdown of remuneration fees in the table below

A. Remuneration     
No. Name Position Person-month Remuneration Rate Time Input in Man-days   {Currenc) USD Total USD cost
  Key Experts                
K-1     [Home]        
  [Field]        
K-2 [Home]        
  [Field]        
K-3 [Home]          
      [Field]          
                 
        Total Costs        
  • Financial proposal Form: Breakdown of [Reimbursable Expenses]

Provide a breakdown of reimbursable expenses (if applicable)

Type of [Reimbursable Expenses] Unit Unit Cost Quantity {Currency} Total value in USD
  {e.g., Per diem allowances**} {Day}        
  {e.g., International flights} {Ticket}        
  {e.g., In/out airport transportation} {Trip}        
  {e.g., Communication costs between Insert place and Insert place}          
  { e.g., reproduction of reports}          
  {econsumables          
  ………………………………          
             
            Total Costs      
  1. Disclaimer

AGRA reserves the right to determine the structure of the process, number of short-listed participants, the right to withdraw from the proposal process, the right to change this timetable at any time without notice and reserves the right to withdraw this tender at any time, without prior notice and without liability to compensate and/or reimburse any party.