Terms of Reference: Working paper on the EU development agencies’ response to cushion the economic effect of COVID-19 on the private sector

  • The Hague, Netherlands
  • Part-time
  • Contract type: Consultancy contract

Company Description

SNV is a not-for-profit international development organisation that applies practical know-how to make a lasting difference in the lives of people living in poverty. We use our extensive and long-term in-country presence to apply and adapt our top-notch expertise in agriculture, energy and WASH to local contexts. SNV has over 1250 staff in more than 25 countries in Asia, Africa and Latin America. We are proud to be a not-for-profit organisation that uses project financing to implement our mission. This requires us to work efficiently and to invest in operational excellence.

In its new Strategic Plan period (2019 – 2022), SNV will more explicitly aim for systems change during project preparation and implementation - by strengthening institutions and kick-starting markets that help many more to escape poverty beyond our projects. We will continue to position ourselves as a premium organisation and invest in making knowledge flow to and from the frontline.

For more information on SNV, visit our website: www.snv.org

Job Description


1. The Practitioners’ Network for European Development Cooperation

The Practitioners’ Network for European Development Cooperation (PN) is a Network for European Development Cooperation bringing together experts from European Member State Development Organizations and the EU to share information and to discuss experiences and synergies. Having insights into the implementation of European development cooperation worldwide, the PN focuses on implementation experiences and recommendations arising from their practice. By providing feedback on European development policies from the practitioners´ perspective, the PN contributes to enhance the coherence of the European efforts. The PN encourages an integrated, pluralistic, innovative, pragmatic and efficient approach in implementing European development.   

The PN consists of 17 Members, two Associates and one Observer. The work is organized under 5 working groups including “Effective Partnerships”, “Contractual and Financial Frameworks”, “Crisis, Fragility and Migration”, “Culture for Development Task Force” and “Cooperation with the Private Sector”.

2. The Cooperation with the Private Sector Working Group (PSWG)

Co-led by GIZ and SNV, the Cooperation with the Private Sector Working Group (PSWG) promotes exchanges among PN members but also with the European Commission on the   role of the private sector in development cooperation and fosters a formal private sector in partner countries. The objectives the PSWG are 1. Facilitate European Commission to disseminate information and engage with European member state organisations on respective initiatives, such as the EU External Investment Plan,  2. Operate as an informal source of information, guidance and consultation with regards to the implementation of such initiatives and knowledge on blended finance, and 3. Search for the development of (possibly joint) new approaches to increase impact of private sector engagement for development.

3. Scope of work

The current COVID-19 crisis has severely impacted the private sector across the globe. Businesses are affected both by the health crisis and by the economic effects of lockdowns, reduced activity, decreased demand as well as disrupted supply chains , amongst other challenges. Both governments, development finance institutions and development agencies are implementing diverse forms of support to businesses and their workers to mitigate the financial and economic impact of the spread of COVID-19 and the global recession.

In an effort to improve the effectiveness of the EU action as well as increase synergies and additionality of PN members’ action in the current context, the PN would like to promote a series of cross agency learnings from the lessons from these interventions.

For this the PSWG is looking for a consultant to lead this process. A first assignment would be to draft a working overview about the EU Member State Development Agencies, and selected European Development Finance Institutions response to cushion the economic effects of COVID-19 on the private sector in partner countries. The consultant will undertake research on each PN member response (via interviews and desk research) and will compile the information in a matrix classifying the response per type of engagement, mode of delivery and other criteria to be agreed with the PN. The overview will be delivered in a power point format structuring the findings, as well as identify those experiences most interesting for further peer learning exchange. The overview will be the first stock taking of further research to be done at the project level and in a series of webinars where projects will present their experiences and lessons.

At the end of the webinars the lessons need to get structured and aggregated for a publication.The specific questions to be tackled will be clarified at the beginning of the assignment, but should include, amongst others:

  • How are EU Member state Agencies adjusting already existing PSD projects on the ground to the new realities e.g. with regard to SME promotion, value chain development, Business Environment Reform projects
  • Which kind of new projects are being discussed in the Agencies to cushion the effect on the private sector?
  • Is a particular focus on specific parts of the private sector applied? E.g. focus on SME, informal sector, labor-intensive sectors or otherwise crucial sectors?
  • Which models for combining technical assistance with financial support to bridge liquidity gaps are being applied?
  • Which challenges are PSD projects facing in the crisis (e.g. how to reach out to micro companies during lock-down) – are there innovative approaches to overcome these?
  • Which approaches to engage the international private sector in responding to the crisis in developing countries are being tested and applied?

4.The consultant shall provide the following services:

  • Conducting interviews with PN members´ and selected European member states development finance institutions including representatives of projects on the ground
  • Preparation of overview paper on PN members’ response to the effects of COVID-19 on private sector. The paper must be built in close coordination with PSWG co-leads and other PN members overseeing the preparation of the report. Obtaining and incorporating the input of  PN member agencies is critical for the success of the assignment. The preparation of the paper must be organized in a synchronized manner to ensure that PSWG co-leads review the work in progress and provide feedback to draft versions to be incorporated by the consultant.  
  • Distillation of issues and identication of specific experiences which could be more widely researched and shared for a follow up analysis in a second series of learning webinars.
  • Presentation of the findings to PN members in an upcoming PSWG meeting to be held in June (virtual). The content and structure of the presentation will be agreed with PSWG co-leads beofre the meeting.


5. Deliverables

  • 1 Working paper in Power Point format on PN members’ response to the effects of COVID-19 on private sector in partner countries.
  • 1 Power Point summary presentation of summarized findings and recommendations of the working paper.



6. Consultant qualifications

The ideal candidate will have a combination of experience working in the field of private sector development and EU international development cooperation.

  • A minimum of 3 years of relevant experience related to private sector development.
  • Familiarity with the European development agencies.
  • Familiarity with Donor PSD approaches, DCED and covid response
  • Master’s degree in international development, economics, business administration or other related field;
  • Excellent interview & facilitation skills in English;
  • Excellent Writing skills for a publication
  • Excellent interpersonal skills and flexible to adapt to team needs;
  • High degree of initiative and reliability.

Additional Information


7. Reporting, Level of Effort, Duration of Assignment and payment terms

The consultant will report to SNV staff to be informed timely, Co-lead of the PSWG. The consultant will also liaise with other co-leads of the PSWG and other members of the PN.  The level of effort for this assignment is expected to be at 10 working days. The assignment is to start immediately, and the task is expected to be completed by June 30th 2020.

Payment of the assignment is after all deliverables have been completed.

8. Follow up Assignment.

Upon satisfactory delivery of the first assignment a possible follow up assignment can be given to the consultant in order to plan, set-up and  moderate a series of 1 hour webinars (approximately 10) where Agencies or projects can give a presentation on their interventions. These webinars could be attended by PN members staff both HQ and field based (project staff) and EU delegations. The discussions and lessons should be noted down, analysed and enriched with follow up interviews/documentation. They should be compiled into a publication. This assignment would take estimated 20 days and happen between July-October. Specific TORs for this follow-up assingment will be provided in due time.

How to Apply

Please submit your application via SmartRecruiters on or before 31 May 2020. All information will be in the strictest confidence.  We will revert to you as soon as feasible when we have reviewed your application.

- We do not appreciate third-party mediation based on this advertisement -

Privacy Policy