Terms of Reference for Technical Assistance

Bangladesh Arsenic Mitigation - Water Supply Project (AMWSP)


General purpose

The Technical Assistance (TA) will provide support to the Project Management Unit (PMU) of the AMWSP: at the level of policy and management; at the level of the operational preparation and evaluation of sub-projects (i.e., the schemes that will be constructed in the villages and in the municipalities); and in the National Arsenic Mitigation Information Center NAMIC).

The composition of the TA in international and national experts is described in Table 1.

Table 1 - Technical Assistance for the Arsenic Mitigation - Water Supply Project
 
Technical assistance category National
staff-months
International
staff-months
Total
staff-months
Policy & management support Short-term: 100 Long-term: 72 172
Support to NAMIC Long-term: 72 ~ 172  Short-term: 100 Long-term: 72 172
Total 200 144 344

The TA will be provided through one contract with one consulting firm or a consortium or other temporary arrangement of national and international firms.

Support to the Project Management Unit (PMU)

The PMU reports to a Steering Committee under the Local Government Division, Ministry of Local Government, Rural Development and Cooperatives, and is chaired by the Secretary Local Government. The Steering Committee provides policy guidance, and approves the annual progress report, budget and work plan. As such, the PMU is mandated to operate as an autonomous entity with regard to personnel, financial and administrative management. It operates independently from the DPHE. The PMU is located in Dhaka, and will develop over time three regional PMUs.

The PMU will have a staff complement of approximately 22 higher-level staff; a similar number of staff seconded from government agencies, primarily DPHE; and 18 support staff The 22 key staff will be recruited through an open and competitive process, and will be paid commensurate salaries. The seconded staff will participate in the PMU operations in order to (i) support the PMU, and (ii) learn about new approaches in demand-based and participatory development of water supply and sanitation. After up to three years, the seconded staff will be re-integrated in DPHE or the government agency from which they hail.

The PMU will be managed by a Project Director. It has three units: Planning and Operations, Administration and Finance; and the NAMIC. In addition, it has the three regional units (RPMUs). It will manage the total project fluid, estimated at US$44.4 million.

At the policy and management level, the PMU will need the assistance to develop coherent concepts regarding the sectoral framework in which it will operate; develop the broad guidelines and strategies for its field interventions; develop, and guide the studies, notably those that are to be launched under the Technology Assessment Group; set up an adequate monitoring and impact assessment system, and a Management Information System; and manage the PMU proper as well as the numerous Support Organizations active in the field, and the other supportive activities (training, studies, etc.).

This support will be provided primarily by the long-term international TA, of which the senior member will be at the same time leading the TA team. Short-term assistance, which should be formulated as assignments of several months to ensure good interaction between consultant and staff; will be used for either one-off specialized inputs, for example on community development and participatory approaches in the first year Of operations, or on a more regularly recurring base, for example to assist in overseeing the PMU's vetting process of the proposal packages for urban water supply, which is of a technically more specialized nature.

In addition, GOB is preparing new and more advanced sector policies, which will partly determine the institutional environment in which the Project will operate. In turn, as the Project is a major actor in the sector, and as it has been agreed that the Project will also act as a platform to develop and test new approaches, its experiences and insights are likely to exert a strong influence on GOB sector policy. Also here, the TA will have to provide an appropriate level of support.

An important task of the TA will be to assist the Project Director to analyze the institutional environment in which he has to work. The "arsenic issue" has numerous stakeholders, and the PD will not only be required to maintain workable relationships with these, but also to take pro-active positions and stimulate new collaborative arrangements. These stakeholders include other Governmental Ministries (Health, Water Resources, Agriculture, etc.), Governmental agencies (Local Government Engineering Division, Geological Survey of Bangladesh, etc.), -most research establishments and universities, nearly all NGOs, the media, and local government. The PD must be cognizant of these interests and ensure proper and intensive communication, consultation and cooperation with these parties, yet at the same time demonstrate leadership.

At the level of operational preparation and evaluation of the Project's village-based and municipal sub-projects, the TA will provide following support: detail, refine and update of the instruction and training manuals that spell out the operational guidelines for the PMU staff, the SOs and other organizations involved in the community development, assistance to municipalities, and in the sub-project preparation and evaluation; supervise the preparation of the social and environmental frameworks for sub-project assessment and ensure that IDA guidelines on resettlement, social impacts and environment are followed; carry out cross-checks and quality control of the PMU's vetting of the sub-project technical and financial proposal packages; and using this information to propose improvements in the procedures; participate in the evaluation of sub-project proposal packages that are unusual, technically or otherwise complex, or require specialized expertise; develop and implement the Management Information System; prepare reviews and reports; assist in developing and enhancing organizational expertise, by preparing and providing training to the PMU staff, as well as to other organizations; and assist in any other important activity where their expertise is required.

The TA for this component will consist of long-term international (three years), and short-term international and local consultants. The short-term assignments preferably consist of prolonged medium-term stays of several months in order to ensure intensive interaction with the staff, and maximize impact. The short-term TA will be notably used to provide temporarily specialized expertise that does not need to be available permanently in the PMU, for example to prepare instruction and training manuals on specific subjects; and to assist the PMU staff and portfolio officers during those months that a large number of proposal packages need to be reviewed. For example, short-term assistance could be introduced to review the environmental components of all proposal packages during the months that the PMU Staff Appraisal Committee processes the proposal packages.

Support to the National Arsenic Mitigation Center (NAMIC)

The TA comprises. long-term international consultants, and short- (or medium-term) local consultants. The TA will support: the organization of the NAMIC, including the setting up of the equipment (including specialized software) and the office; the development of the internal work plans, procedures and protocols of data acquisition and management; the development of the external relations, including cooperating with other Organizations to acquire or generate information. and maintain a network of interested organizations and experts who will provide and receive information, and who will be requested to assist in developing the broad support and the quality of the NAMIC; the dissemination of information through bulletins and other means; the introduction and operationalization of computer hardware and software; and the actual data processing, especially if this is of a very specialized nature.

The short-term TA will be involved notably to provide one-off specialized expertise. for example to prepare internal data management protocols and routines, and to provide additional manpower on a recurrent base during periods of heavy work load or for specific tasks, such as for example the preparation of maps and the editing of the information bulletin.

Attachment - Terms of Reference, Technical Assistance to the AMWSP

The TA, to be provided by one firm or consortium is to achieve the following, in accordance with the general task description before: assist the PMU, at policy and management level, which will require two long-term international experts; assist the PMU at its operational levels, which will require one-off short- to medium-term specialized inputs international and local experts, and inputs recurring on a more regular base; assist the NAMIC at managerial level, which will require two long-term international experts; and assist the NAMIC at operational level, which will require one-off short- to medium-term specialized inputs from international and local experts, and inputs recurring on a more regular base.

PMU assistance

The long-term (four years) international expert will assist the PMU management and especially the PD at policy and management level. At the same time, he/she will lead the TA team. His/her tasks include notably support to the following activities: development of coherent concepts regarding the sectoral framework in which the Project will operate; development of the broad guidelines and strategies for its field interventions, especially for the institutional arrangements at field/village level; setting up of a quality assurance system with respect to procurement and disbursement; management of the PMU proper; and management of the system of Support Organizations active in the field, and the other supportive activities (training, studies, etc.).

He/she will have a higher degree in engineering or behavioral or economic sciences. The candidate will be able to demonstrate extensive experience in several rural development programs in developing countries, preferably in South Asia, and preferably in water supply and sanitation. He/she must be familiar with demand-driven and participatory approaches. he/she will show ample experience with policy and management issues, as demonstrated for instance through project management He/she will be an excellent communicator and facilitator, able to address the institutional complexity and multi-disciplinary environment of the Project. In addition, he should be strong in motivating and leading, with the PD, the PMU team. Knowledge of Bangla is an important advantage.

The long-term (two years) international expert will assist the PMU management with the development and overseeing of the operational procedures, and will introduce expertise with municipal water supply and municipal services. He/she will notably provide support on the following activities: development of broad guidelines and strategies for its field interventions, notably for the sub-project proposal review of municipal schemes, and for the related municipal financial assessment and capacity building; development and improvement of capacity building programs, mechanisms, materials and activities, especially for municipalities and local government; the guidance of the studies, notably those that are to be launched under the Technology Assessment Group; and the development of an adequate monitoring and impact assessment system, and a Management Information System.

He/she will have a higher degree in engineering or financial/economic sciences. The candidate will be able to demonstrate extensive experience in several municipal development programs in developing countries, preferably in South Asia, and preferably in water supply and sanitation, or urban environment. He/she must be familiar with demand-driven and participatory approaches, and with institutional strengthening and reform of municipal corporations. He/she will show familiarity with policy and management issues, as demonstrated for instance through project management. He/she will be an excellent communicator and facilitator, able to address the institutional complexity and multi-disciplinary environment of the Project. Knowledge of Bangla is an important advantage.

The short-term international experience will have to be provided as a function of the annually anticipated requirements of the PMU. This TA will be planned in coordination with the local short- and medium-term TA, with the former more involved in specialized one-off assignments, and the latter more in the recurrent support of the regular PMU sub-project vetting. The PMU will draft annual work plans and budgets, which will specify which TA will have to be provided during which period. TOR will be specified by the PMU for each individual assignment. Individual TA staff with expertise will be provided on the following subjects: community development, notably the organization of community based organizations (CBOs), behavioral change, and the linking with local government and NGOs; this is likely to consist of more than one expert; water supply technologies, especially rural relief and low-cost approaches, and sanitation and AHESA (arsenic, hygiene and health education); water supply technologies for treatment and distribution, in municipal or semi-urbanized areas, including urban fringes; financial analysis of urban and rural water supply; training and capacity building of CBOs, NGOs and local government; communications and media; epidemiology and health assessments.

The TA required during the first year includes (i) community development, notably the organization of community based organizations (CBOs), behavioral change, and the linking with local government and NGOs; (ii) social and environmental assessment frarneworks; and (iii) water supply technologies for treatment and distribution, in municipal or semi-urbanized areas, including urban fringes.

The experts will have commensurate higher degrees; be able to demonstrate their extensive operational experience under field conditions, preferably in Bangladesh and/or South Asia; show a familiarity and interest in a problem-solving approach; and have the capacity to work in such a way that their interventions are effectively disseminated and operationalized within the Project's teams.

The local short- and medium-term TA experts will complement the short-term international TA, but concentrate more on the recurrent operational activities of the PMU, especially in the preparation and vetting of sub-projects, and the capacity building activities. In these respects, they will provide special expertise to the PMU staff that is not required in the PMU at sufficient intensity to warrant a special staff position. The TA will provide support notably to: [sic]

the preparation and updating of detailed guidelines for, and the regular vetting of the sub-project proposal packages submitted by the CBOs with the assistance of the SOs; this could pertain notably to technical aspects (both rural and municipal)., as well as the social and environmental requirements; capacity building and training of SOs, local government, and other agencies; updating and finalization of training and instruction manuals; conducting local inspection visits; and guidance of the TAG and the studies conducted with the TAG finds.

[sic] The experts will have commensurate higher degrees; be able to demonstrate their extensive operational experience under field conditions, preferably also in countries outside Bangladesh; show a familiarity and interest in a problem-solving approach; and have the capacity to work in such a way that their interventions are effectively disseminated and operationalized within the Project's teams.

Support to the NAMIC

The long-term (four years) international expert will assist the NAMIC management at management level. At the same time, he/she will lead the TA sub-team that works with the NAMIC. His/her tasks include notably support to the following activities: development of coherent concepts regarding the information and communication framework in which the Project should operate, and the implications for NAMIC; development of concepts regarding data required to measure Project impact, in cooperation with the specialized Third-party supervision teams; development of the guidelines, strategies and instructions for the data selection, collection, management and dissemination, both at aggregate level of the Project and sector, and at field/village level; development and guidance of the supportive nation-wide network of organizations and individuals involved in relevant data collection, to seek their advice, arrive at better mutual standardization o{ data collection and management approaches, and ensure an overall higher quality of information on the arsenic problem in a national cross-sectoral context; setting up and management of the relevant operational instructions to the field teams of the Project, as well as to the NAMIC proper; setting up of a quality assurance system with respect to chemical analysis and other data collection and management; and management of the NAMIC proper.

He/she will at least have a post-graduate degree in engineering, hydrogeological, geological or economic sciences, but with educational and/or sound professional experience in water supply. The candidate will h~ able to demonstrate extensive experience in similar programs in developing countries, preferably in South Asia, and preferably in water supply and sanitation, or water resources. He/she must be familiar wit MIS, GIS and relevant hydrological software. He/she will show ample experience with related management, as demonstrated for instance through project management. He/she will be technically excelling, able to promote a multi-disciplinary and scientifically rigorous environment in NAMIC and the Project. In addition, he should be strong in motivating the NAMIC team. Knowledge of Bangla is an important advantage.

The long-term (two years) international expert will assist the NAMIC management with the development and overseeing of the operational procedures, and will introduce expertise on geohydrology. He/she will notably provide support on the following activities: development of the specialized GIS and MIS for the collection, management and digestion of geohydrological information, in such a fashion that this will provide essential information regarding the current and future evolution of the arsenic contamination in different parts of the country; this is to be understood as the fundamental information on arsenic contamination for the water supply as well as for the water resources and agricultural sectors, and this information needs to complement other data relevant for water supply planning, such as salinization, lowering of water tables, prevalence of diseases, availability' of alternative water resources, etc.; development and enhancement of the dissemination approaches, especially the regular information bulletin; and the guidance of the studies, notably those that are to be launched under the Technology Assessment Group.

He/she will have a higher degree in hydrogeology, geochemistry or hydraulic engineering. The candidate will be able to demonstrate extensive experience in similar programs in developing countries, preferably in South Asia and preferably in water supply and sanitation, or water resources. He/she must "be familiar with GIS and hydrological mathematical models, and with the related soft- and hardware. He/she will be an excellent communicator and facilitator, able to work in the institutional complexity and multi-disciplinary environment of the Project. Knowledge of Bangla is an important advantage. Experience with information dissemination techniques is useful.

The short- and medium-term international and local TA will have to be. provided as a function of the annually anticipated requirements of the NAMIC. The international TA will be more involved in specialized one-off assignments, and the local TA more in the recurrent support of the regular NAMIC activities. The NAMIC will draft annual work plans and budgets, which will specify which TA will have to be provided during which period. TOW will be specified by the NAMIC for each individual assignment. Individual TA staff with expertise will be provided on the following subjects: development and operationalization of data bases, GIS, MIS, and mathematical modeling tools; development of supportive bases, especially with the relevant health, epidemiological, social, economic environmental information; ensuring coherence in order to address overall goals objectives with regard to water supply in municipal and rural areas; production dissemination of regular bulletins for a broad audience, in written and electronic forms; training and capacity building of NGOs, local government, and government agencies.

The candidates will have a higher degree in hydrogeology, geochemistry, hydraulic engineering, water supply engineering, epidemiology or economics. in aggregate, they will be able to demonstrate extensive experience in similar programs in developing countries, preferably in South Asia, and preferably in water supply and sanitation, or water resources. They must be familiar with MIS and GIS, and with the appropriate computer software and technologies. They will be able to work in the institutional complexity and multi-disciplinary environment of the Project. Knowledge of Bangla is an important advantage. Experience with information dissemination techniques is useful.


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