Consultant: Gender and Inclusion

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International Water Management Institute (IWMI), on behalf of CGIAR Research Program on Water, Land and Ecosystems (WLE), is looking for an early career researcher or practitioner, who has strong gender, agriculture and natural resources knowledge, interested to work with leading gender experts to help coordinate and undertake an end of program review of gender and inclusion outputs, outcomes and impact and help bridge gender theory-policy-practice gaps across a very interesting set of research programs on Water, Land and Ecosystems.

Project Background

The CGIAR Research Program on Water, Land and Ecosystems (WLE) is a global research-for-development program working through partnerships to ensure agricultural intensification is sustainable, benefits smallholder farmer livelihoods and makes use of the services provided by ecosystems. WLE researchers aim to tackle key global challenges related to water scarcity, climate variability and environmental degradation and work from farm to landscape scale. WLE is led by the International Water Management Institute (IWMI), a CGIAR Research Center focused on the sustainable use of water and land resources in developing countries. WLE is run out of the IWMI headquarters in Colombo, Sri Lanka, with regional offices across Asia and Africa.

WLE interventions and approaches lie fundamentally at the intersection of equity and sustainability. We believe that focusing on one or the other — or for that matter on agriculture, water and environment — without attention to both risks meeting SDGs. Environmental degradation and natural resource scarcity present major threats to agricultural productivity, resilience to climate change and social equity. There is an urgent need to provide clearer guidance on practical ways forward for policy makers, farmers and business leaders on this complex and contested set of issues.

In 2021, the Gender and Inclusion program of WLE will be conducting an end of program evaluation, the objective of which is two-fold. Firstly, the evaluation will assess the quality of WLE gender research outputs and outcomes. Secondly, the evaluation will facilitate and synthesize reflections on the processes of knowing and doing gender at individual, project and/or organizational levels. The latter will draw specific attention to the extent to which WLE gender and inclusion outputs and interventions have enabled shifts (how and why) in individual and institutional frames of reference (on knowing gender) as well as individual and institutional capacities (in doing gender). This internal evaluation is designed to support relevant WLE researchers and stakeholders to:

  • self-evaluate the quality of research outputs/deliverables, based on four specific criteria: relevance, scientific credibility, legitimacy and effectiveness, and
  • reflect on and self-assess shifts in gender-aware knowledge, behaviours, attitudes, cultures and capacities of individuals and institutions within CGIAR and amongst key boundary partners.

Objective of the Assignment

The consultant will work primarily on the synthesis review process, under the supervision of the WLE/IWMI Gender, Youth and Inclusion (GYI) Lead. Additionally, the consultant will undertake two other tasks:

  • provide technical support to select WLE projects which apply a Gender Transformative Approach; and
  • track, support and report on WLE projects to help enhance the quality of reporting on gender outputs, including updating project reporting on MARLO. Specific tasks are listed below:

Task 1: Help coordinate, conduct and manage the GYI end of program evaluation; connect consultant/s to WLE researchers, organize and keep record of planning meetings; attend and help manage in-presence and virtual workshops; collate secondary and primary data, work on the Synthesis/ Review document and support any related activities on this task.

Task 2: Provide technical support on specific projects (outlined below in section 3). This will entail incorporating conceptual frameworks on gender and inclusion, technical inputs on specific project documents and outputs, conducting literature reviews and providing technical support, including primary research on select projects.

Task 3: Track, report on and support WLE projects with a focus on gender and inclusion, so as to help enhance the quality of reporting on gender outputs; as well as help identify opportunities for outputs to translate into outcomes and impact. This will entail reviewing and updating project reporting on MARLO; participating in, and helping organize discussions and workshops for cross-learning between projects; help inform and co-ordinate discussions and present timely progress and review update to WLE Flagship leads, Gender Focal Points and other researchers; attend relevant project and WLE meetings; work with international consultant (KIT) and GYI Lead to help synthesize gender outcomes and outputs and work towards a WLE GYI synthesis document.

Task 4: as relevant and necessary – support the WLE GYI lead and WLE Communications team.

Scope of Work

For Task 1 the consultant will work directly with the WLE GYI Lead, WLE Gender consultants, and KIT (Royal Tropic Institute, The Netherlands) team.

For Task 2, the consultant will work with the GYI Lead, Relevant WLE Flagship (FS) leads, Project Leads and Flagship Gender Focal Points on the following projects:

  • The gendered dynamics of landscape restoration: Who decides? (FS 1: 1793)
  • RDL Gender Focal Point Project (FS 1: 1548)
  • Gender-responsive innovations for soil rehabilitation, alternative fuel and agriculture for resilient refugee and host community settlements in East Africa (Energy and Farming input for feeding refugees) (FS 3: 1656)
  • Seeking transformative change: identifying and addressing root causes of gender inequity in wetlands management in Myanmar (FS 4: 1796)
  • CGIAR-WLE Commission on Sustainable Agricultural Intensification (FS 5: 1763)

For Tasks 3 and 4, the consultant will work directly with the WLE GYI lead and team, as well as with the WLE Project Management Unit.

Reporting: For all tasks the consultant will report regularly to the WLE GYI Lead. The consultant will submit a brief progress report every fortnight, and briefing meeting, workshop notes as and when. In addition, every 3 months there will be progress and performance reviews.

Location: This assignment will be home-based. The consultant will be prepared to work across various time zones, particularly Central European Time, United States Eastern Standard time, and Sri Lankan Standard time.

Duration: Approximately 12 months up to 31 December 2021

The Fee will be paid as per International Water Management Institute (IWMI) norms for a junior international consultant. All work-related travel will be organised by the WLE PMU.

Your application must include a copy of your curriculum vitae, together with a cover letter and the names and e-mail addresses of three professional referees. Please provide one or more writing samples — for example essays, reports, published blogs or news articles.

Please note that only short-listed candidates will be contacted.


The candidate, a junior professional or researcher, ideally at the start of their career, should have:

  • Master’s degree in related disciplines
  • Demonstrated understanding of gender transformative approach
  • Work experience demonstrating monitoring, evaluation, analytical and communication skills – we are looking for someone who can analyse and bring attention to gender and inclusion across a wide range of WLE projects and programs
  • Some experience of living and working in the global south is desirable.

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