Research Consultant

  • Full Time
  • United Kingdom
  • Applications have closed.

Website DAI Global UK Ltd.

Job Description

CDP Crisis Protection Gap Project – Bottom-up Costing Analysis

Research Consultant

CDP Background

The Centre for Disaster Protection is a UK-Aid funded organisation that works to change how the world prepares and pays for disasters. Identifying, planning for and financing disasters before they strike saves lives, reduces suffering and protects livelihoods and economies, especially for the poorest and most vulnerable communities.

To do this, the Centre provides advisory services, builds knowledge, catalyses innovation and creates partnerships across the development, humanitarian and financial sectors.

Additionally, we are focused on building effective systems and processes for people and operations that support the Centre to rapidly yet strategically scale and grow in a way that promotes diversity, equity and inclusion and ensures the organisation is a great place to work.

Read more about us in our five-year strategy (2019-2024).


This is a term of reference seeking a consultant to support an ongoing research exercise. The contract is short-term (up to 20 days) completing by end December 2022. The scope of work relates to humanitarian costing approaches, the context for this work and details are provided below.


What crise, such as droughts, could emerge over the coming years? How will they impact on the lives of poor and vulnerable people? And how should funds be pre-positioned to mitigate and manage the impacts of these shocks?

These are the questions that country governments, the international system, and donors will need to ask if pre-arranged financing is to become the default way to pay for managing the costs of disasters.

It is increasingly possible to estimate crisis related costs ahead of time. Combining information about crises-related expenditures with risk modelling approaches can provide realistic estimates of the likelihood and magnitude of crisis costs over the coming years. This type of probabilistic crisis risk information1is critical to inform how funds should be pre-positioned to meet the costs of tomorrow’s crises. However, while data, modelling methods, and metrics for quantifying and communicating risk do exist, as yet there is no single source of trusted and easily interpreted predictive crisis risk information that is directly relevant for longer term financial planning of governments and the international system.

This is the basis for the first of three critical, practical solutions identified by the Centre’s Crisis
Lookout Campaign2 as key recommendations for the G7:
2 Predict & Protect: G7 solutions for a new approach to risk financing. sis_lookout_14Aprilv4.pdf
“Predict crises better by creating a Crisis Lookout function to increase engagement with risk
information and support the prioritisation of crises globally, regionally, and nationally.”

In consultations for the solutions paper of the Crisis Lookout, questions were raised about what an approach to measuring the crisis protection gap could look like in practice. These questions broadly related to:

1. the function of a mechanism to measure the crisis protection gap in relation to existing crisis risk information initiatives, what role it serves and for who, and;

2. the technical feasibility of producing trusted and accessible multi-hazard risk assessments at a global scale, for crisis spanning climate events, conflicts, and disease outbreaks.

The Centre for Disaster Protection is undertaking a research project, the Crisis Protection Gap, to explore these issues in more detail. This work aims to explore questions around who the key users of the information are, what are their use cases, and questions regarding technical and practical feasibility.

Scope of Work

The objective of the work is to develop a methodology that could be used to identify cost drivers and estimate costs associated with humanitarian response to crisis events, with a particular focus on: i) droughts, ii) conflict-induced displacement, iii) disease and iv) cyclones. The work should illustrate how the methodology would work and identify the key challenges that would need to be overcome for successful implementation.

The proposed Research Consultant is expected to undertake the following three tasks.

1. Propose a methodology

The Research Consultant should develop a methodology that can be used to identify cost drivers and estimate the costs of humanitarian response to a new crisis event that drives a significant increase in needs compared to the baseline. The ‘window’ relevant to this methodology will be determined in consultation with the Centre, but, indicatively, it is expected to cover a period of approximately 100 days from the start of the crisis.

The methodology should describe the underlying conceptual model i.e. the links between crises, the humanitarian clusters that would be involved in responding, and response costs; the data that would need to be collected; and the likely sources that can be used to collect that data. Particular focus should be given to the four crisis types identified above and any differences in the methodology between these crisis types should be clearly explained.

The focus should not be on proposing a methodology that could derive estimates of the costs and cost drivers for specific events. Rather, it should be a methodology that can be used to understand costs and cost drivers for humanitarian response at a level of aggregation that can be used to inform or support aggregate assessments of the costs of providing humanitarian assistance. The most important aggregations of interest will be regional or global, and by risk type.”

2. Illustrate the application of the methodology

This task would consist of two sub-tasks.
First, the Research Consultant should identify the clusters involved, and the associated response activities, that would typically be expected when responding to the four crisis types identified above. This would include an assessment of the phasing of these response activities in relation to when the crisis event commences, and a qualitative assessment of the relative importance of these different response activities. For example:

• In relation to drought, the main responses are expected to relate to the provision of food, nutrition, cash and health assistance, as well as fodder and medicines to keep livestock healthy.

• In relation to cyclones, the key activities are expected to include the provision of shelter and non-food items (and/or cash)

• In relation to conflict-induced displacement, a multi-sectoral response will typically be required

• In relation to health, the nature of the responses will likely vary with the nature of the diseases being treated. The scope of diseases to be considered will be determined in consultation with the Centre.

Second, for at least one of the crisis types, the Research Consultant should provide an illustrative application of the methodology, in a way that reflects the assessment of the clusters involved, and associated activities that would need to be undertaken. The intention is that this application should give stakeholders confidence that the methodology is realistic and can yield quantitative results, as well as to highlight some of the key challenges that would need to be overcome to fully implement the methodology. It should give insights on which factors, such as geography or event severity, are likely to be the most important variables in explaining the variability in costs between events and over time.

The crisis type would be decided in conjunction with the Centre, but we expect that a focus on cyclones would best complement the other work being undertaken in the technical workstream.

3. Roadmap for implementation

The third task would develop a roadmap for implementation of the proposed methodology. This roadmap should set out the expected timeframe for implementation across the four crisis types (and then further crisis types), the resources that would be needed, and the stakeholders who would need to be consulted and/or informed of the work. It should include an assessment of the key risks that could be expected, and the ways in which these risks might be mitigate

Notes on the scope of work

The work should assume that these costs will be met through the international humanitarian system.

To keep the analysis tractable, the Research Consultant can assume that it is only necessary to provide a response to one crisis event at a time. The impact of compounding events/crises on costs may be discussed qualitatively.


The methodology for the work is expected to consist of:
• reviewing of existing literature, especially flash appeals, on what humanitarian response activities are required at what point in time before, during and after a crisis event and what the costs of these activities might be

• analysing existing costing databases and methodologies that inform agencies when planning and costing humanitarian response activities undertaking interviews with key stakeholders involved in the costing and delivery of humanitarian response such as OCHA and other UN agencies, international NGOs

• discussions with humanitarian actors to gain insights on how they approach costing and/or to test the appropriateness of key parts of the work.

The Research Consultant will work in close collaboration with the Technical Lead and Principal Economist to agree the details in relation to each of the three tasks set out above. They are invited to make their own suggestions as to how the work can be best undertaken to realise the objectives of the Centre.

The Research Consultant will be required to attend fortnightly catch-up calls to discuss on the tasks and agree any adjustments to the methodology as the work progresses. The Centre has also commenced a related piece of work that seeks to understand the trends in historic costs of disaster events and the factors that help explain these costs (a ‘top down’ costing analysis). The Research Consultant should engage with this partner in order to share methodological approaches and sources as well as to understand similarities and differences in the results.

A workshop to review and discuss the work undertaken under the technical track will be scheduled, the Research Consultant should attend this event (either physically or virtually) to present their findings, their will be representatives from interested external organisations as well as internal stakeholders.


For each of the four crisis types, the Research Consultant is expected to provide:

• A briefing note setting out the proposed methodology

• A draft report setting out the initial findings for all three of the tasks

• A presentation to support discussion at the planned workshop

• A final report which responds to any comments from the Centre and from workshop attendees

As noted above, regular update calls should be expected and the consultant should anticipate presenting their results, either in person or online, in at least [1] workshop.


The ideal candidate should demonstrate the following skills and experience:

• Over 10+ years of experience in a relevant field, for example disaster risk financing, public financial management, humanitarian costing methods, supply chain management or logistics.

• The ability to work independently with guidance from the project team.
• Experience of providing strategic and policy advice.

• Experience working with key institutions in the international system around climate change and DRF, including donors, multilateral development banks, multilateral humanitarian and development agencies, NGOs, academia, CSOs

• Track record in applied research, organising interviews, and preparing and presenting working papers to varied audiences

• Experience of producing research, analysis and evidence products to exceptional standards of rigour, quality and impact including leading peer review processes

• Ability to communicate complex information in creative, precise and engaging written and visual formats, and collaborate effectively in a team.

• Demonstrated research skills in one or more of the following areas: mixed methods qualitative research; applied research skills including household survey design and statistical analysis; impact and process evaluations.

• Experience in researching and analysing humanitarian response activities

All work should be conducted in a way that upholds the organisation’s values and contribute to a positive organisational culture, that builds the Centre’s external reputation through professional stakeholder management and collaborative working with key partners, and that contributes to effective partnerships and relationships in the development, humanitarian and financial sectors

Assuming commencement around the 30 th September 2022:
• Start of October 2022- Start of Project
• Start of November 2022 – Submission of Briefing Note
• Ealy December 2022- Presentation and dissemination of findings
• End-December 2022 – Submission of Final report

Fee Rates and Payments
Remuneration will be based on individual experience and skills while, as the Centre is a UK aid-
funded project, all rates for consultants and staff are subject to controls. It is expected that a total of 20 days of research time would be required, additional days may be proposed where need is evidenced. Applicants should propose a gross daily fee rate in their submission (see instructions below), which should be inclusive of any applicable taxes. (NB, as one exception, any applicable UK VAT should be separately indicated).

Budgets for any proposed expenses (pass through costs) must be set out clearly and will be billable exclusively on actual cost incurred, evidenced by receipts.

Fees will be payable on actual usage of days evidenced by timesheets, subject to completion and approval of key deliverables due at the invoicing point.   Any expenses will be paid on actual costs (against receipts) using an agreed invoice and timesheet template.
Correctly submitted invoices will be paid within 30 days of receipt of invoice and/or approval of relevant work (whichever is the later).

Negotiation and finalisation of commercial terms
DAI on behalf of the Centre reserves the right to negotiate on any aspects of the proposed costs and payment and is not bound to accept any offer. All proposed services and costs must also receive approval from the FCDO, and DAI Global UK will not proceed to contract where such approval is withheld.

Application Process
Submission mechanism and deadline
Please submit the following by 12pm UK time, Thursday 29th September 2022 through the
DAI careers portal at

• Your CV (max. 3 pages).
• Covering letter indicating how your experience and interest aligns with this work, and  how you will approach this work (max. 2 pages).
• Indicative gross daily fee rate expectations

DAI Eligibility Criteria
All organisation(s)/ individual(s) shortlisted will undergo an initial eligibility criteria assessment. This includes vetting of the organisations in line with terrorism checks, company history of improper conduct, any legal acts against the organisation(s) and initial vetting of proposed
personnel. Where disqualification factors are discovered the application may be rejected without notification.
Successful organisation(s)/ individual(s) will be subject to detailed vetting analysis and relevant reference checks, and, in the case of organisations, also a due diligence assessment through DAI’s Management Capacity Assessment Tool (MCAT). This will include an assessment of:
• Organisational details
• Safeguarding policies, procedures and systems
• Financial management policies, procedures, practises and systems
• Duty of care
• Modern Slavery policies and procedures.

Final award of contract will not be confirmed until these checks are complete.

Intellectual Property
Intellectual Property Any foreground Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) arising out of the
performance of project will belong to the Managing Agent of the Centre for the purposes of awarding to the Centre perpetual, irrevocable licence to use, sub-licence or commercially exploit such IPRs in the delivery of its mission and likewise to the Centre’s funder, the UK FCDO. The Management Agent, on behalf of the Centre, will provide the Service Provider right to use such IPRs and other Centre IPRs to the extent needed to perform their obligations under this project. IPRs relating to any background intellectual property drawn upon by the Service Provider in delivery of the assignment shall remain with the Service Provider, who will provide the Centre (through its Managing Agent) and FCDO rights to use such intellectual property to the extent it is integrally required to enjoy their rights to use the results of the Project and the foreground IPRs.

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