Come and Work With Us - Consultant for Worldview Research Project Final Evaluation

Dóchas is seeking a consultant to conduct a final evaluation of the Worldview Research Project

Closing date: 5pm 24th June

29 May 2024

Terms of Reference: Worldview Research Project Final Evaluation

May 2024

Introduction

Dóchas is the Irish network for international development and humanitarian organisations. It is a vibrant network which aims to connect, strengthen and represent people and organisations working for a just, sustainable and equal world. We provide a forum for connection, co-operation and collaboration between our fifty-six members. Our mission is to enable international development and humanitarian organisations in Ireland to achieve greater impact by working together. One of our key objectives is to mobilise our convening power to influence policy change and public support. 

We are committed to engaging Irish citizens to share and be part of the fight against global poverty, inequality and injustice. However, we know that we need to evolve how we proactively communicate and engage with people on humanitarian and development issues and on the relevance of official development assistance (ODA). 

Against this backdrop, the Worldview Research Project has been managed by Dóchas since 2020, during its initial five-year phase. Funded by Irish Aid (Department of Foreign Affairs), the project aims to reveal more about Irish attitudes to international development cooperation; not just on what people in Ireland believe, but what informs and influences their beliefs and attitudes, ultimately shaping their actions and responses to international development issues and ODA, and to deepen our engagement with the Irish public on issues of global development, equality and citizenship.  The rationale is that a shared knowledge base will help individual organisations, and the sector as a whole, to engage the Irish public on international development cooperation more effectively through shared narratives and shared approaches. There was no previous research of this kind done at this scale in Ireland. The specific objectives of the Worldview Project are:

Worldview is now nearing the end of its current project cycle (2020-2024). There is an active steering group in place, and four baseline surveys have taken place (2021A, 2021B, 2022, 2023), with the fifth survey currently in commencement, alongside digital and in-person experiments underpinned by the project’s data. The detailed audience segmentation, based on a representative sample of the Irish public, undertaken at the beginning of the project further enables us to break down the Irish population into six distinct segments and discover more about who they are, their socio-cultural profile, level of support and engagement with ODA and crucially, how to connect with them.

Context 

In the interim five years since the project began, substantial shifts have occurred within the international landscape resulting in a series of intersecting crises including the COVID-19 global pandemic, Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, the Gaza-Israel conflict and increasing threats from climate insecurity that have collectively contributed to global instability. The most recent Worldview data from 2023 tell us 51% of survey respondents stated ‘War, conflict, terrorism’ as the issue they are personally most concerned about. 

Closer to home, the knock-on effect of these international crises has been directly felt, alongside a cost of living crisis impacting the inequality divide, a national housing crisis, and scarcity of services such as healthcare which are also leading to an increase in anti-immigration sentiment, fuelled by increasing far-right agitation. 

Reckoning with this sense of ‘permacrisis’ presented internationally and domestically is causing some to disconnect entirely from issues related to social justice and international development cooperation and as a result there is a sector wide recognition that it is becoming increasingly difficult to connect audiences, existing and new, to ODA and by extension to the wider sustainable development landscape. In addition, Irish international development organisations are at a crossroads as it relates to creating new frames under the guise of ethical communications and are increasing efforts to avoid the perpetuation of harmful stereotypes as they continue to engage new audiences.

Within the Irish development sector, advancements have also occurred with new Irish Aid strategies including A Better World and Global Citizenship Education Strategy 2021-2025, which guide Ireland’s international development programme. Spending on ODA has increased year on year since the beginning of the research project. In 2020, the Irish Government invested over €867 million on Ireland’s overseas aid programme, while in 2022, the Government of Ireland invested almost €2.3 billion in Official Development Assistance (ODA). Excluding costs relating to Ukrainian refugees, the figure for Ireland’s 2022 ODA is €1.4 billion, representing approximately 0.39% of GNI.

As the final wave of Worldview commences, a proposal is currently in development to extend the project for a further five years.

Purpose of the evaluation

Dóchas requires the support of a consultant to facilitate the evaluation of the Worldview Project in its first five years. The purpose of the evaluation is to provide Dóchas, our members, and Irish Aid with an independent reflective assessment of the work of Dóchas over the period of Worldview since 2020.

The main objective of this formative evaluation is to assess if Worldview has succeeded in achieving its objectives since its inception. The evaluation should identify what has worked well, less well or could have been implemented, managed and/or designed better, therefore assessing the opportunities, limitations and effectiveness of the Worldview research project.

Scope of the evaluation  

The consultant will be required to evaluate the project by leading a participatory process with Dóchas team members, Worldview steering group members and other key stakeholders including Dóchas members and Irish Aid/DFA. The objective is to assess if the project was successful, determine if it delivered on the original objectives and outcomes, identify evidence of application, assess impact and identify strengths and weaknesses. In particular, this evaluation will:

  1. Assess to what extent the project has been successful in delivering upon the objectives first identified in 2020, including a consideration of what has and hasn’t worked well in the delivery and dissemination of the research and reasons why.
  2. Assess the strategic impact of Worldview amongst members and stakeholders and identify evidence of application over the different waves.
  3. Identify strengths and weaknesses in regards to design, delivery, and resource management, and provide lessons learnt from this.

Specific questions that the evaluator may look at include:

Relevance

Impact

Effectiveness

Efficiency

Methodology, Contract and Timing 

A detailed proposal of methodology should be included in the consultant/s proposal. For the successful candidate this will be further developed and finalised in the inception phase. This consultancy should follow a collaborative and participatory mixed methods approach and will likely involve 8 -10 days of work as follows:

The consultant will liaise with the Worldview project manager for administrative support, including sharing of documentation; contact details etc.  The consultant will engage with the Dóchas CEO at the inception, mid-point and final stage of the evaluation to track progress.

We expect the consultancy to be selected by the week of 1st July with the first facilitated meeting with the Dóchas team to take place that week. The work will be completed no later than 30th August 2024. 

Dóchas will not be liable for payment of PAYE, PRSI or USC in respect of this consultancy. Payment of all appropriate taxes remains the responsibility of the Consultant. Payment for the days worked will be made on the production of an invoice when work is completed to the satisfaction of Dóchas. 

The maximum budget for this evaluation process is €6500 (inclusive of VAt)

Key Reference Documents 

Specific Outputs  

Confidentiality and Data Protection 

A normal duty of confidentiality is expected in relation to Dóchas business, both during and after this consultancy. All documents (e.g. records, reports, plans, policies, papers, files) relating to work carried out in the course of this consultancy with Dóchas will remain the property of Dóchas at all times. The consultant will not retain copies of such records and will delete any documentation once a final publishable draft is accepted by the Project Manager.

The consultant will not at any time either during the period covered by this contract or after its termination make use of or communicate to any unauthorised person/body any confidential information about Dóchas which may have been obtained during the course of this consultancy.  On termination of this contract by either party the consultant will deliver to Dóchas all records, documents, equipment, etc. in their possession or control relating in any way to this consultancy with Dóchas. 

Consultants must comply with all Data Protection regulations. Confidentiality relating to Dóchas data and processes not in the public domain will be respected by the consultant.  

Application Process 

It is essential that the consultant will have:

Previous experience in evaluating research/communication/public engagement projects would be desired.

Closing date: 24th June at 5pm

Please submit your expression of interest in this tender to jane-ann(at)dochas.ie, using the subject ‘Worldview Evaluation EOI’, suggesting a possible methodology and rate, including VAT.

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