Culture Expert to SDC for a Culture Programme in the Horn of Africa Region Consultancy Opportunity

Organization: Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) in Kenya

Duration: Between July 2022 - December 2023

Contract Type: Consultancy

Closing date: Sunday 24th July 2022

This Terms of Reference (ToRs) provide the framework for the technical backstopping throughout the tender process related to the SDC Horn of Africa Culture Programme.

1. Background

SDC considers culture a component of development and a catalyst for social transformation. In its efforts to contribute to the reduction of poverty and inequality, SDC seeks to identify and build on the cultural resources, local knowledge and creative forces on hand, in the societies where it works.

As a general rule, the aim of culture promotion initiatives is to strengthen local cultural identity, social cohesion, and intercultural exchanges in partner countries. They represent a contribution to the richness and diversity of local cultural life.

In the Horn of Africa (HoA) region, SDC has been supporting short-term culture initiatives since 2013. However, in 2020, SDC took the decision to establish a more sustainable culture programme. This begun with an assessment of the culture sector of the three countries of the RPHoA, specifically: Somalia (including Somaliland), North Eastern Kenya (Somali region of Kenya) and South Eastern Ethiopia (Somali region Ethiopia). The assessment was to determine key entry points for SDC to establish a long-term 12 year culture programme in the HoA region.

The recommendations from the assessment suggested SDC to conduct a mapping of tangible and intangible culture heritage, including Somali language, as well as support culture markets, which led to a rapid MSD assessment in 2021. A deeper MSD assessment of the culture markets, including associations such as women handicraft associations, is however necessary, following recommendations from the initial assessment.

2. Purpose of the assignment

SDC is looking for a culture expert, with a demonstrated track record of knowledge and experience of the culture sector of the Horn of Africa region, including tangible and intangible cultural heritage. The culture expert will work together with a procurement expert (hired separately). Together they will provide backstopping support during the inception phase of the SDC culture programme.

Based on the above, the purpose of this assignment is:

  1. Support SDC Horn of Africa Regional office (Nairobi-based) in elaborating and consolidating a set of strong arguments in favor of pursuing a one-step functional tendering process with two lots, for procuring the appropriate skills to:
  2. Conduct a mapping exercise of the tangible and intangible cultural heritage, including Somali language, in order to design and develop effective interventions and implement the same. This includes the preservation and promotion of this heritage. To cover North Eastern Kenya, Somalia (including Somaliland) and South Eastern Ethiopia. (Lot 1).
  3. Conduct an in-depth MSD assessment on culture and art forums and associations, including women handicraft associations, before identifying interventions, defining the business model and implementing the same. To cover North Eastern Kenya and Somalia, including Somaliland. (Lot 2).
  4. The scope definition for lot 1 would be inter alia to define the geography and type of cultural heritage to be focused on; the scope definition for lot 2 would be inter alia to define the type of associations (sectors: such as culture institutions, art associations / forums) and type of technical assistance to be provided. The culture expert will work together with the procurement expert (hired separately) to define the above. It will include suggesting a realistic procurement and action plan for the remaining part of the Culture programme inception phase.
  5. Once the procurement approach is validated by SDC HQ, the culture expert, together with the procurement expert (hired separately) will support SDC Horn of Africa Regional office (Nairobi-based) throughout the complex tendering process. The required support from the back stopper (Culture) includes: 1) coordinating and consolidating a fully-fledged project document (ProDoc) that will feed into the formulation of the credit proposal for phase 1, especially if there will be two different winning bidders for lot 1 and 2. The ProDoc(s) will be elaborated by the winning bidder(s) and will include Gender, Stakeholders, Risk and Governance assessments, Monitoring and Evaluation framework(s) and logframe(s); 2) facilitation of a validation workshop with winning bidder(s) and key sector stakeholders, to be conducted at the end of the inception phase.
  6. Conducting background work on the following issues, corresponding to open questions from SDC and elaborate recommendations accordingly:
  • How will SDC best engage implementing partners and potential donor partners?
  • Building on the Swiss comparative advantage, what role should SDC play in the national political dialogue of the target region and the aid coordination in the culture domain?
  • What type of associations should benefit from technical assistance during phase 1?
  • What type of cultural heritage should be prioritized for mapping, inventorizing, during phase 1?
  • How best to reach most left behind groups within the cultural sector and in order for them to profit from the programme?
  • How to form appropriate synergies and partnerships with other SDC programmes and beyond?
  • What will be the governance structure of the programme in case of two separate implementing partners of the two lots?
  • How and when to engage the governments of the countries in the HoA region?
  • What type of technical assistance will the winning bidder of lot 2 need to offer to support culture associations and creatives to make them more sustainable and economically viable?

Together with the procurement expert:

  • What is the definition of the scope of the two lots and the specific activities of the winning bidder(s)? (Delimitation of the scope)
  • What are the suitability and award criteria for bidders of the two lots?
  • How is the available budget distributed between the two lots?
  • Should a consortia be allowed to bid or only prime contractor with subcontractors?
  • Are there any donors (in Ethiopia, Kenya and Somalia), international private foundations or local private sector actors ready to contribute to one or both of the two lots? What funding size can they confirm so that the tender could include those additional funds?

3. Methodology

Together with the procurement expert (where applicable):

  • Desk review of relevant documents including but not limited to: SDC culture and development policy, SDC commissioned ‘SDC culture sector evaluation for the Horn of Africa’ and ‘Assessment of the culture market for Somali and North Eastern Kenya’, Swiss Cooperation Strategy 2022-2025, any relevant country policies existing in the culture sector of Kenya, Ethiopia and Somalia including Somaliland, Entry Proposal, major reports produced by other development partners, published literature on the Somali culture sector in the Horn of Africa.
  • Consultation and interviews with SDC, project partners, target beneficiaries, development partners, etc.
  • Review of ongoing and planned interventions related to tangible and intangible cultural heritage (including Somali language) and culture markets by other stakeholders (institutions, donors, multilateral, bilateral, NGOs, private sector, etc.).
  • Review of culture and art associations, forums, institutions, creative industries and initiatives in Somalia (including Somaliland), North Eastern Kenya and South Eastern Ethiopia.
  • Field visit to accessible areas of North Eastern Kenya, South Eastern Ethiopia and Somalia including Somaliland, where applicable.
  • Preparation of bidding documents including evaluation criteria, etc. together with procurement expert.
  • Participation in the evaluation and negotiation team for the bidding process.
  • Together with the procurement expert, coordinate and consolidate a fully-fledged ProDoc that will feed into the formulation of the credit proposal for phase 1, especially if there will be two different winning bidders for lot 1 and 2. The initial ProDoc(s) will be elaborated by the winning bidders.
  • Perform an overall backstopping function to SDC Horn of Africa office throughout the opening phase of the culture programme, together with the procurement expert.

4. Deliverables

The main deliverables of the assignment, together with the procurement expert (hired separately) will be:

  • A 1.5 pager documented note arguing in favour of a one-step functional tendering process with two lots, or any alternatively sound approach.
  • A realistic plan of action (including deadlines and deliverables) of the conduction of the tendering process in the culture programme inception phase.
  • The Tendering Documents for a functional tender process, according to SDC requirements and regulations, including formulated specific objectives and appropriate evaluation and selection criteria for the different lots.
  • A validation workshop report as a result of the dialogue/negotiation process with the winning bidder(s).
  • A 3 - 5 page document elaborating recommendations related to part 2 d) above.
  • A coordinated and consolidated fully-fledged ProDoc, in the situation where there will be more than one winning bidder for lot 1 and lot 2. This will be done at the end of the inception phase.
  • A 3 page document on lessons learnt from the tender process.

5. Composition of team and requirements

The backstopping support for the culture programme inception phase will be provided by a team composed of:

  • one culture expert in the targeted region
  • one procurement (hired separately)

The culture expert will be required to contribute inputs in the analytical work and thematic quality assurance, ensuring that the tender documents attract the right offers/bidders.

A high level of technical skills (especially project cycle management) in programme design is expected.

The procurement expert will lead the mission and will be responsible for the overall coordination (main point of contact to SDC), final write up and submission of the deliverables listed under point 4 above, to SDC. It is important to note that the team may be required to undertake a field mission in the target areas for collection of data.

The consultant(s) or companies affiliated with them, who apply for this assignment, will not be able to participate as bidders to the tender.

Specific competencies required from the culture expert

Technical competencies:

  • A minimum of 7 years of relevant experience in the areas of culture for development and creative industry development. A university degree in Social Anthropology is an added advantage;
  • confirmed expertise in the culture sector in the target region (Somali region).
  • prior experience in working in fragile contexts, (knowledge of the Horn of Africa, preferably the Somali context an asset)
  • prior experience working with INGO’s / donor organizations

Personal competencies:

  • outstanding analytical skills
  • ability to provide innovative solutions, creativity
  • good communication and negotiation skills
  • proven facilitation skills
  • proven leadership skills

6. Timing

The process will start in August 2022 and end in December 2023 with estimated effective maximum 70 working days, combined for the main consultant and team.

The team leader (procurement expert) will be hired initially to conduct a preliminary review of FDFA procurement and legal frameworks, inclusive of a briefing from FDFA procurement office. This should result in the production of deliverables i) and ii) above.

Based on the proposal resulting from deliverable ii), a new contract will be established for the team leader, culture expert and the supporting consultant(s) (if needed), for the remaining time required of the inception phase. The tendering documents are expected by end October 2022, which will coincide with the end of the assignment for the supporting consultant(s).

The overall assignment is expected to be completed by 31st December 2023 latest, to incorporate the following tasks:

  • Preliminary assessment work (early August 2022), including:
  1. writing up of a 1.5 pager on the recommended tendering approach
  2. elaboration of a detailed plan of action for the inception phase
  • Preparation of tendering documents: August – October 2022 (3 months)
  • Backstopping to SDC Horn of Africa office throughout the tendering process, analysis and evaluation of proposals, selection of winning bidders and negotiations with the same and validation of conclusions reached through the dialogue/negotiation process with the winning bidders and SDC and preparation of ProDoc. (August 2022 – December 2023).

7. Logistics and Management

  • The consultant(s) must have a laptop, USB key and tape recorder to facilitate the work.
  • The consultant(s) will have mobile telephones with sim cards. Credit will be paid by the consultant(s) – included in the financial offer/budget.
  • The consultant will contact and set meetings with the relevant external stakeholders in consultation with SDC.
  • Accommodation, transport and security (where needed) in Kenya, Ethiopia and Somalia (incl. Somaliland) will be covered by the consultant(s). To be included in the financial offer/budget.
  • Visa and travel authorizations will be the responsibility of the consultants however if needed, SDC will provide letters of recommendation or any information required by authorities.

How to apply

8. Application

Consultants invited to apply will provide a full application pack of 10 to 15 pages maximum, and send it to the following e-mail address: and specifically headed ‘Technical Backstopping (Culture Expert) to SDC for a Culture Programme in the Horn of Africa Region’

The technical proposal should include:

  • Understanding of the Terms of Reference.
  • Technical approach developed and detailed methodology.
  • Composition of the team, division of responsibilities between its members, CVs submitted with cover letters and availability of members (if applicable).
  • Provisional timetable for the mandate and an estimate of cost per person per day.
  • References from two similar previous assignments.
  • A sworn statement as to the absence of any conflict of interest.

The financial proposal should include:

  • Total budget including all taxes (WHT, VAT) and incorporating a budget break-down to;
    • include daily fees rate per consultant,
    • living expenses,
    • travel, etc..

The consultant(s) shall be required to submit the following administrative information to be verified and validated before the contract is awarded.

  1. Corporate person/company
  • Certificate of registration/Incorporation of the company.
  • Latest Tax Compliance Certificate of the company.
  • Copies of academic certificates of proposed consultant(s).
  1. For natural persons/individuals/freelancers
  • Latest Tax Compliance Certificate.
  • Copies of academic certificates of the consultant(s).

Compliance with local law on taxation

  1. Withholding tax (WHT)

Taxes, charges and social security contributions will be applicable in conformity with local legislation. The Embassy is obligated to deduct and submit Withholding Tax (WHT) to the Kenyan Revenue Authority (KRA). WHT is a percentage of the earnings and will vary depending on the country of origin of the consultant.

  1. For non-residents, the Embassy will respect existing “double taxation agreements (DTA)”. The maximum WHT rate of 20% (subject to change depending on legislation) for non-resident, will be deducted.
  2. For residents the maximum WHT is 5% for this type of consultancy.

More information on the applicable tax rates can be found here:

  1. Value Added Tax (VAT)

The Embassy is exempt from VAT. The service if subject to VAT according to the local law, the resident corporate person will within 30 days reimburse the VAT amount to the Embassy as soon as the exemption certificate is availed by the Embassy.

Legal status of the consultant in the country of engagement

The consultant must have valid a work permit or equivalent authorizations before travelling, that allows such a person to live and work in the respective country.

Final date for submission of applications: Sunday 24th July 2022, 1700 hrs local time, Nairobi. Send it to the following e-mail address: and specifically headed ‘Technical Backstopping (Culture Expert) to SDC for a Culture Programme in the Horn of Africa Region’. Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted.