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Consultancy: Research Partner to Execute an Outcome Evaluation on an Adolescent Girls’ Empowerment Program

Consultancy: Research Partner to Execute an Outcome Evaluation on an Adolescent Girls'

Organization: BRAC USA

Location: Nigeria 

 Closing date: 31 Dec 2021

Type

Career Category

payment:US$110,000-150,000 per year

 Permanent& Full-time

Title: Request for Research Partner in Nigeria

Location: Nigeria – Contract Allows Remote

Dates of Assignment: 1/28/2022 – 7/30/2022

Scope: BRAC USA is recruiting a research partner to execute an outcome evaluation on an adolescent girls’ empowerment program in Nigeria.

Background

BRAC USA is partnering with A360, a program of Population Services International, Inc. (“PSI”), on an economic strengthening component for the Matasa Matan Arewa (MMA) and 9Ja Girls interventions targeting adolescent girls and young women (AGYW) in Northern and Southern Nigeria, respectively. Society for Family Health (SFH) leads the implementation of A360 in Nigeria. MMA and 9Ja Girls aim to increase demand for and uptake of contraception among AGYW. In Ogun in Southern Nigeria, participants in the 9ja Girls program receive training from a female mentor, usually in a space within a local health facility. In Kaduna in Northern Nigeria, the program is similar, but MMA adapts the 9Ja program to the cultural context of the region, modifying the content and dosage of the training to meet the needs of married adolescent girls. The evaluation will be conducted on the economic strengthening components.

To that end, BRAC USA seeks an experienced research partner to assess the effectiveness of A360’s economic strengthening activities in improving economic outcomes for AGYW. The evaluation will cover 5-8 locations/clusters (likely the catchment area around a health facility). The overarching population targeted for the evaluation and data collection are adolescent girls aged 15-19 years (unmarried girls in the South and married adolescent girls in the North). A360 is currently exploring additional selection criteria for girls to participate in these economic strengthening activities (e.g., out of school or not having a current entrepreneurship activity).

These program activities, scheduled to take place over nine months starting in early 2022, will reach 5,000 beneficiaries in the Kaduna and Ogun states of Nigeria. We estimate that the research study will engage 400 participants in each state. Furthermore, based on the implementation design, we anticipate that the research will take a quasi-experimental approach, and BRAC USA aims to work with our research partner on the final design of the evaluation. Baseline data should be collected no later than April 1, 2022, and midline data will be collected approximately three months after the baseline. **

The evaluation will capture outcomes on several key indicators. These indicators may include the following, which have already been identified by PSI, SFH and BRAC USA as among the key indicators of success:

Proportion (%) of participants who:

● have gained specific skills

● have opened a savings account or joined a savings group

● have started a business or a new income generating activity

● have knowledge of what resources they can access to support their businesses

● indicate that they have the support of their husbands, male partners or parents (applies to unmarried AGYW in the South) to participate in income generating activities both inside and outside the home.

● report confidence in speaking to their key influencers about their economic goals

● have increased their participation in collective social or economic activities (such as clubs, networks, etc.)

● report increased trust toward other networks and group members

● say they have increased confidence in their ability to achieve their economic goals

● say they have used the specific skills gained through their participation to take steps toward achieving their economic goals

This preliminary list of indicators will be refined and finalized in collaboration with SFH and the research partner. Other details on the size and design of the study will also be finalized in collaboration with this partner.

The core responsibilities of the research partner are:**

● Appoint a team member as the lead PI on the study.

● With support from BRAC USA and working closely with SFH and the local implementing partners, develop the study design, indicators, research protocols, survey tools, and materials for submission to an accredited Institutional Review Board (IRB) in Nigeria.

● Deliver IRB approval documents to BRAC USA.

● Train enumerators and oversee data collection.

● Promptly deliver data collected to BRAC USA and after the completion of the project make anonymized data publicly available via an open-source data-sharing platform.

● Collaborate on analysis and report writing with BRAC USA.

How to apply

Apply using this link: https://bracusa.hire.trakstar.com/jobs/fk0so43?source=ReliefWeb

Application Instructions

Please submit a technical proposal with a budget narrative, a detailed CV of the proposed PI and core team members for this evaluation, and a proposed budget by 12/31/2021. Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis. We have included for your use an outline of the technical proposal as well as the budget template.

Eligibility

The research partner must have an experienced and qualified PI for the proposed evaluation, the ability to obtain all appropriate IRB approvals and permits, as well as the ability to recruit, train and supervise enumerators for field data collection. We are especially interested in working with a partner with a permanent, physical presence in Nigeria.

Short-listed candidates will be given more details regarding the planned implementation, but a detailed overview of A360’s approach can be found here. In addition, candidates must be available for a virtual interview in late December to early January.

Institutions that cannot meet these eligibility requirements are discouraged from submitting an application.

Technical Proposal Guidelines

Please address the following questions in a narrative not exceeding five pages, single-spaced.

  1. Project management
  2. Name and brief description of the organization that will manage the contract.
  3. Associated researchers starting with the lead PI (Name, Designation, Institutional Affiliation)
  4. Proposed IRB of Record
  5. Evidence of Effectiveness
  6. Please articulate why you are the appropriate research partner for this evaluation. In doing so, you may discuss:
  7. The expertise and value-add of the research team, including outcome evaluations that you have completed, especially those related to AGYW’s empowerment.
  8. Your experience conducting research in Kaduna and Ogun States where the implementation is taking place.
  9. Your experience working with local implementing partners.
  10. What are your early thoughts or ideas on refining the research plan? How will you work with BRAC to co-develop the evaluation study?
  11. What actions will you take to ensure data quality?
  12. Please briefly state your experience working with the proposed IRB of record including the approximate duration of proposal review.
  13. Mitigating Risks
  14. Are you fully available to complete the project according to the proposed timeline? What challenges, if any, do you anticipate affecting the project timeline and deliverables?
  15. What other risks, if any, are anticipated during the course of the evaluation, and what steps will be taken to mitigate them?
  16. How will you ensure the ethical collection of data from adolescent participants?
  17. Applicants should describe in some detail how they intend to address COVID-19 related constraints related to data collection and management.
  18. Budget Narrative (no more than 1-page)
  19. Total budget requested
  20. Please include a description justifying the major cost drivers of the evaluation. Details clearly laid out in the budget template do not need to be restated here, but you may use this space to elaborate on any expenses that are unclear in the template. We estimate that bids will be between $110,000 – $150,000. For bids above this range, please provide additional justification in this section. Competitive bids will demonstrate high value for money.

Contract Deliverables

Acceptance of Contract: Fully executed contract is delivered to both parties. Due by 1/28/2022.

Research Plan: Draft of full research plan (including all survey instruments) for review and feedback before applying for IRB approval. The partner will receive feedback within one week, and then should promptly proceed with submitting materials for approval. Due by 2/15/2022.

IRB Approval: For any research involving human participants, and/or data relating to identifiable human subjects, researchers are required to complete a research ethics review and provide proof of the approval and/or exemption from the Institutional Review Board (IRB) that conducted the review. The National Health Research Ethics Committee (NHREC) is the preferred IRB body. Due by 3/20/2022

Baseline Data: Baseline data shared with BRAC USA. Due by 04/01/2022.

Midline Data: Midline data shared with BRAC USA. Due by 07/15/2022.

Written Report: High-level research report (10-20 pages in length) on key project findings and recommendations for the implementer. Due by 7/30/2022.

Evaluation Criteria

Applications will be evaluated based on five criteria. Strong applications will meet all criteria defined below.

  1. Partner expertise: The research partner (including the PI and core researchers) has the expertise needed to successfully complete the project.
  2. Partner experience: The research partner demonstrates vast experience conducting similar research in the context where the implementation is taking place.
  3. Partner capacity: The research partner has demonstrated that they have the capacity to complete the project deliverables in the timeframe specified.
  4. Partner operations: The research partner has a permanent, physical presence in Nigeria.***Value for money:*** The research partner has prepared a competitive budget that represents good value for money.

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