Jobs at Wetlands International Africa

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Period of Performance September 2013- October 2014


1.              Introduction


Nigeria’s Niger Delta is the third largest mangrove and freshwater swamp-forest area in the world. It delivers a wide range of ecosystem services that contributes to the well-being of millions of people.  Wetlands International has been working on wetland conservation issues in the Inner Niger Delta since over two decades, and aims to upscale work to the Nigeria’s Niger Delta in order to secure integration of conservation and wise use of wetlands in management of delta. To this end, Wetlands International is implementing a Sustainable Livelihoods and Biodiversity Project (SLBP) to be conducted between  2013- 2015.



 The project aims to demonstrate linkages between the conservation and restoration of wetlands and improvement of livelihood opportunities in local communities in the Niger Delta and to engage the latter to integrate wetland values into development plans with ambitions to sustain and enhance ecosystems and sustain livelihoods through incentive systems. The project will also develop the capacity of local civil society partners to implement ecosystem-based conservation and restoration and expand the scope of the most successful projects. In addition, it will express the values for a particular resource and wetland ecosystem service in the Niger Delta context with a view to integrating these values into government’s sustainable development planning, changing the practices of the wider oil and gas sector, understanding wetland values and sustaining and restoring wetland ecosystems.


2.              Objectives


The main objective of the consultancy is to assist the Wetlands International’s Sustainable Livelihoods and Biodiversity Project (SLBP) in identification of mechanisms and specific interventions through which ecosystem services and biodiversity values of Niger Delta wetlands can be integrated in planning, decision making and investments at delta level, specifically those addressing community livelihoods. Specific objectives of the assignment are to:

Ø   Develop a coherent information base on ecosystem services values of the Niger Delta, including information on key ecosystem components and processes required to deliver the services and conservation-development trade-offs linked with provision of these services;

Ø   Assess the impacts of sectoral developmental planning on wetland ecosystem services and linked community livelihoods;

Ø   Assess the role of wetland ecosystem services in supporting livelihoods, with specific emphasis on spatial and temporal dynamics of service provision, stakeholder linkages, degree of access to services and possibility of improving livelihoods through wise use of resources; 

Ø   Suggest measures for improving integration of wetland ecosystem services in developmental planning and decision making in the Niger Delta, with specific focus on oil and gas sector.


The consultant will also assist SLBP in enhancing local capacity to access to information and expertise on ecosystem service values and adopt and integrate them in sustainable development planning.


1.              Scope of work


The scope of the study will comprise development of a delta wide knowledge base on wetland ecosystem services, conducting valuation of select wetland types to illustrate their role in overall development, with specific focus on community livelihoods, and outline a strategy for mainstreaming wetland ecosystem services and biodiversity in developmental planning in the delta region.


2.              Proposed approach and methodology


SLBP shall follow a tiered approach in analysing and structuring ecosystem service mapping andsocioeconomic valuation for ND. The first tier will focus on creating a Niger delta level understanding of the wetland ecosystem services within a spatial context using mapping tools. Through an assessment of representative wetland types within different locations of the delta, the project would aim to create an ecosystem type and - function layer for the delta wetlands, providing spatial information on ecosystem types and functions at various locations. This can subsequently be converted to ecosystem services through engagement of stakeholders. This can be subsequently analyzed to assess the vulnerability of various wetland types by superimposing other spatial datasets eg land use/land cover change, development projects within the delta region, etc. Development of this stage of ecosystem services analysis would be through a combination of desk study and field assessments carried by a multi-disciplinary team (comprising hydrologists, ecologists, economists, livelihood systems and GIS/RS experts) capable of assessing multiple ecosystem values.


As the second tier the project would aim at demonstrating the value of ecosystem services in community livelihoods for selected wetland types through stakeholder led assessments on contribution of wetlands to the local/national economies and the costs of inaction for not ensuring their sustainable management. Following sequential four stage approach aimed at creating a stakeholder led process is proposed for this stage:


#1: Establishing the socioeconomic valuation context: this stage of the process is aimed at determining the valuation question at the demonstration wetland site scale- why valuation is necessary (assessing total contribution, trade-offs or multi-functional use) and what kind of value metrics are appropriate[1]. Specific aspects that need to be addressed include:

a)             Identification of types of information and values metrics required by various stakeholders;

b)             Assessment of stakeholder interests and influence on value metrics;

c)              Mechanisms through which stakeholders can assign their own values and incorporate into decision making;

d)             Description of objectives of socioeconomic valuation within the policy and stakeholder contexts, specifically with reference to livelihood priorities and concerned policy sectors;

e)             Identification and description of key valuation metrics;

f)              Identification of spatial and stakeholder scope of valuation with reference to the valuation metrics.     


#2: Conducting stakeholder analysis: the focus of stakeholder analysis is to seek their participation and involvement in determining the key wetland ecosystem services and tradeoffs involved in wetland use. Key aspects that need to be addressed include: 




a)             Identification of people, groups and organizations which should be involved in the analysis of socioeconomic valuation and/or likely to be affected by the outcomes. Based on level of influence and importance, identify primary stakeholders (with high importance to the process but with low influence), secondary stakeholders (with high importance as well as influence); and external stakeholders (who could have influence but have limited importance to the valuation process);

b)             Identification of forms and processes of stakeholder engagement into valuation process.  


#3: Inventorising ecosystem services and livelihood linkages: interactions between the physical, biological and chemical components of wetlands enable them to perform functions forming the basis of ecosystem services. These ecosystem services interact with various livelihood capital endowments of communities and lead to adoption of specific livelihood strategies leading to wellbeing outcomes. Therefore assessment of ecosystem services and livelihoods linkages forms the basis of socioeconomic valuation of delta. Specific aspects that need to be addressed include:

a)             Identification and selection of wetland ecosystem services with reference to the valuation question;

b)             Assessment of linkages of wetland ecosystem services with livelihood capitals[2] through participatory assessments and surveys within target communities;

c)              Quantification of capacity of wetlands to provide these ecosystem services on a sustainable basis, using appropriate biophysical/ecological indicators.


#4: Socioeconomic valuation of wetland ecosystem services: following the establishment of perceptions and definitions of values, valuation of wetland ecosystem services would be carried out to enable their integration into the decision making context set out in steps 1 and 2. The valuation would assist assessing the varying contribution of the ecosystem services into community livelihood systems and help assess the efficiency of distributional aspects of value creation. Aspects that need to be addressed include: 

a)             Classifying use and non-use benefits related to ecosystem services;

b)             Assessing socioeconomic value of ecosystem services through use of direct, indirect, survey based[3] and (as appropriate) benefit transfer methods;

c)              Assessing distribution and appropriation patterns of user benefits, and identification of factors contributing to resource use inefficiencies[4].     


1.              Tasks, Deliverables and Schedules


5.1. Tasks


The specific tasks of the consultants will, inter alia, comprise the following:

Ø   Develop a broad scale analysis of wetland ecosystem services at Niger Delta level identifying the critical ecosystem processes and components required for delivery of the services 

Ø   demonstrate the value of ecosystem services for  community livelihoods for select wetland types, by establishing the valuation context, conducting stakeholder analysis , creating an inventory of ecosystem services and livelihood linkages and values of services

Develop a strategy for mainstreaming wetland ecosystem services in sectoral planning and decision making, with specific focus on oil and gas sector


5.2.  Specific tasks and Deliverables


Task 1: Prepare detailed Work Plan: Under this task, the Contractor will submit for approval a work plan which will describe the detailed approach and schedules for each activity to meet the terms of reference. This plan will be prepared in consultation with WIA and will be subject to modification during implementation by mutual consent.  


Deliverable: Final written plan (This final plan incorporating the comments of WIA is to be submitted within 7 working days of the receipt of such comments).


Due date: The initial work plan proposal should be submitted for approval within one month of signing of the Agreement with the Contractor.


Task 2: Create a Niger delta level understanding of the wetland ecosystem services within a spatial context using mapping tool. The use of visual GIS maps is envisaged to highlight the range and distribution of ecosystem service types linked to the different ecological zones, as well as (in broad brush terms) the societal values of these ecosystem services.  Task will also include identification of select wetlands of high relevance for the community livelihoods, wherein detailed valuation will be carried out


 Deliverable: Final report (This report incorporating the comments of WIA is to be submitted within 14 working days of the receipt of such comments).


Due date: 60 working days from the completion of the work plan proposal.


Task 3: Establish the socioeconomic valuation context.


Deliverable: Final report on the socioevaluation context, including the Shared Vision on valuation outcomes and processes (This report incorporating the comments of WIA is to be submitted within 14 working days of the receipt of such comments).


Due date: 60 working days from the completion of the Task 2


Task 4: Conduct stakeholder analysis.


Deliverable: Stakeholder final report outlining people, groups/organizations which should be involved in valuation and/or likely to be affected by the outcomes of valuation as well as forms and processes of stakeholder engagement into valuation (This report incorporating the comments of WIA is to be submitted within 14 working days of the receipt of such comments).  


Due date: 60 working days from the completion of the Task 3.


Task 5: Inventory ecosystem services and livelihood linkages


Deliverable: Assessment of Wetland ecosystem services (Final report; (This report incorporating the comments of WIA is to be submitted within 14 working days of the receipt of such comments).


Due date: 90 working days from the completion of Task 4.


Task 6: Socioeconomic valuation of wetland ecosystem services.


Deliverable: Final report on Economic estimates of user and non user values (This report incorporating the comments of WIA is to be submitted within 14 working days of the receipt of such comments).


Due date: 120 working days from the completion of Task 5.


6.       Requirements


The Contractor should have strong skills, knowledge and experience in economic valuation of ecosystem services and should be familiar with socio economic analysis. Additional areas of desired expertise could include community-based biodiversity management. 


Candidate should meet the following:

-          5 or more years of experience in economic analysis and/or evaluation of ecosystem services;

-          Skills and experience to analyze socio economic factors that affect project activities and their associated outcomes;

-          Experienced in working with cooperating governments and other donors to build cooperative processes within a political context.


The consultancy will be carried out by WI experts in association with the suitable domestic institutions (Training and/or Capacity building institutes) and/or individual experts.


5.              Deadline for Application: October 20, 2013




Send a cover letter and the list of human resources and their CV to WIA, Email: with copy to




[1] Different valuation questions require different methodologies. Valuation aimed at assessing the contribution of wetlands to regional and national economies would require a Total Economic Valuation, whereas assessing tradeoffs within various wetlands uses would require valuation of specific ecosystem services.  Valuation is not expected to be monetary.  .


[2] Wetland ecosystem services though forming flows parallel to the natural capital have the ability to transform and support all other forms of livelihood capitals (physical, social, financial and human). An assessment of this linkage enables understanding of the criticality of ecosystem services to livelihood systems. Scoping wetland – livelihoods interlinkages should also involve determining the direct and indirect drivers of change within ecosystem services and livelihood capitals; institutions and freedoms which determine the capability of communities to practice livelihood strategies based on livelihood capitals; and overall implication for human well-being (assessed in terms of internal sustainability – capability of livelihood systems to reorganize after stress; social sustainability – livelihood systems not impinging on other livelihood systems, and environment sustainability – livelihood systems not undermining wetland ecosystem services). 

[3] Emphasis must be made on institutional approaches to socioeconomic valuation – deliberative approaches to valuation wherein the stakeholders collectively impute values to ecosystem services. These approaches are more relevant in the context of ND wherein collective decision making, particularly at community level, play important role in value construct.

[4] The aim is to assess opportunities for enhancing well-being through more equitable distribution of wetland ecosystem services through focusing on enabling environments – governance, freedoms, capabilities.  




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