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  • Consultancy Role at Search for Common Ground (SFCG)

  • Posted on: 28 October, 2016 Deadline: 13 November, 2016
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    Search for Common Ground (SFCG) is an international non-profit organization that promotes peaceful resolution of conflict. With headquarters in Washington DC and in Brussels, SFCG’s mission is to transform how individuals, organizations, and governments deal with conflict - away from adversarial approaches and toward cooperative solutions. 
    SFCG seeks to help conflicting parties understand their differences and act on their commonalities. With a total of approximately 800 staff worldwide, SFCG implements projects in 49 countries, with permanent offices in over 35, including Africa, Asia, Europe, the Middle East, and the US.

    We are recruiting to fill the position below:

    Consultant for a Baseline Study


    Location: Maiduguri

    Goals and Objectives
    The baseline study covers two projects, “Expanding Initiatives to Reduce HR Abuse by Security Forces in Northern Nigeria” and “Early Warning/ Early Response (EW/ER) Mechanisms in Northern Nigeria”. While they have individual goals and objectives, the two projects have a number of interlinked activities and they are implemented in the same geographic areas, Borno and Adamawa States in Northern Nigeria.

    The overall objective for “Expanding Initiatives to Reduce HR Abuse by Security Forces in Northern Nigeria” is "Expanding engagement and advocacy processes and enabling local CSOs to effectively address human rights abuses perpetrated by security forces". It is supported by three specific objectives: 

    • Obj. 1: Strengthen the capacity of CSOs and the NHRC in human rights monitoring, reporting, and advocacy;
    • Obj. 2: Establish a platform between the NHRC, CSOs, and judicial actors for effective action on issues related to human rights;
    • Obj. 3: Improve communication and understanding between affected communities, key stakeholders, and security actors on issues related to human rights.

    The project aims to bolster the established CSO platforms, and leverage investments in state actors, CSOs and community leaders through targeted trainings to build their capacity to own and address human rights gaps. In parallel it draws relevant regional actors into a growing network of human rights actors. It further aims to bring displaced populations into the spheres of the networks by supporting partner organizations to extend their programming across the border of difficult-to-reach areas such as Diffa, Niger.

    “EW/ER Response Mechanisms in Northern Nigeria” has the overall objective of "Expanding and strengthening EW/ER processes to enhance community and state actors’ ability to protect citizens", and it has three specific objectives:

    • Obj. 1: Reinforce and expand a community-based early warning and early response system;
    • Obj. 2: Strengthen engagement between state and local actors to secure communities;
    • Obj. 3: Strengthen Partners’ Capacity to Support and Monitor Early Warning Systems.

    It is constructed on existing initiatives of supporting an overarching community-owned peace architecture in North Eastern Nigeria. The project builds on a process of convening and training influential local leaders for community dialogue-to-action processes in order to promote increased collaboration and confidence in insecure areas, supported through a suite of media and community activities, and strengthening structures to work with the state and linking them to civil society groups. A core component is an early warning/ early response system to identify emerging conflict threats and appropriate solutions. The project also develops strategies to increase learning and building capacity of partners engaged in the project.

    Baseline Questions
    The purpose is to collect, analyse, and present information related to the two projects that currently is not known, or only partly known, to SFCG. It shall provide a complete picture of the situation in Borno and Adamawa States with regards to the following questions:

    • Security Actors: Who are the current formal and informal security actors? Where are they present? How do security forces and communities relate to one another: (both perspectives); What is the level of trust of security agents by community members, and vice-versa?  What is the current level of collaboration between security and target communities?
    • Human Rights Abuses: What kind of human rights abuses are taking place? Where? To what extent? Where can reliable information be found? What is the trends of gender with regards to perpetrators and victims?
    • EW/ER systems: Which current EW/ER systems are in place? Who are the actors involved? Which geographic areas do they cover? What types of cases do they report? To what extent are they functional? Since when have they been in place?
    • EW/ER and communities: What is the communities’ relation and involvement in current EW/ER? What type and level of interaction of communities with EW/ER?  Are there any trends with regards to involvement and gender?
    • Communication and decision makers: What are the traditional and formal channels of communication about security and human rights abuses? Who are the decision-makers? Which government agencies exist with a peacebuilding or security mandate that are present in communities? How effectively do these peacebuilding or security agencies work with communities?
    • Traditional Systems: Are there traditional ways of dealing with human rights abuses as well as early warning and early response? Which? How do these mechanisms work? Are there any trends with regards to involvement and gender?
    • Partners: Who are the most adequate potential implementing partners as per SFCG identified criteria?
    • Intervention zones: Which additional LGAs and communities are most relevant to expand to? (Ranking according to SFCG criteria) Who are the key local (community) actors of influence?


    • The baseline shall be based on secondary data (to the extent that reliable data is available) and primary data. Primary data collection methods are primary qualitative such as key informant interviews, focus group discussions and surveys. Other methods can be used as considered relevant.
    • The baseline will be conducted in Adamawa and Borno State. For certain baseline questions, data collection is done in intervention LGAs and Communities, and for other questions data collection will take place in areas where SFCG is not present. Exact locations will be agreed between the consultant and SFCG project team.
    • Recommended interviewees at state level are e.g. i. West Africa Network for Peacebuilding (WANEP), Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), United Nations Agencies, relevant International NGOs, CSOs, EW/ER Networks, State Government Actors, State Police, other State Security Agents, Nigerian Military, Judicial actors, and the National Human Rights Commission.
    • Recommended interviewees at community level are e.g. Local Government Actors, CSOs working on Human Rights, Community Leaders, Representatives of IDPs, Religious Leaders, Peace Committee members, Women Leaders, Local Security Agents, Informal Security agents, Community Members involved in EW/ER, and community members including marginalized groups such as the people living with disabilities, IDPs and women.

    The baseline study deliverables are:

    • An inception report detailing the proposed method, baseline matrix, data collection tools and work plan. It is to be approved by SFCG before starting data collection.
    • Draft report for review by SFCG staff and other stakeholders.
    • Final Report (maximum 40 pages, excluding appendices), consisting of but not excluded to: Executive Summary, Methodology, Analysis, Conclusions and Recommendations. The report should be structured according to the baseline questions.
    • Appendices, including data collection tools and list of interviewees.
    • A power point presentation of the report.

    The ideal candidate and/ or team will have the following:

    • More than 4 years of experience in baselines and evaluations with international organizations;
    • Graduate degree in Conflict Studies, Human Rights, Social Work or other relevant degree;
    • Experience in peacebuilding, conflict resolution and human rights; 
    • Experience in international development, prior work experience in North Eastern Nigeria; 
    • Experience with qualitative methods;
    • Strong analytical skills;
    • Excellent written communication and report writing skills in English;
    • Speaker of Hausa and ideally also Kanuri;
    • Ability to be flexible with time and work schedule

    Logistical Support:

    • SFCG will provide the following logistical support to the consultant;
    • Transmission of background materials (project proposal, meeting notes, etc.);
    • Availability of meeting room in Maiduguri;
    • Use of SFCG printers;
    • Meeting arrangements with stakeholders and beneficiaries if requested by the consultant;
    • Support of a SFCG Field Officer for introductions to key stakeholders and equivalent.


    • The baseline study will take place during November, 2016 - January, 2017, and the final deliverables are due end of January, 2017.

    Method of Application

    Applicants are invited to send an application through our Application System . The title of the application should be: “Baseline Study in North Eastern Nigeria” and the application should hold four attachments:

    • 1 technical offer detailing the methodology, timeframe and size of the evaluation team proposed (max 4 pages);
    • 1 biography of the evaluator/ evaluation team demonstrating relevant experience/ knowledge (max 10 pages);
    • 1 financial offer (Excel) detailing the costs of the budget;
    • 2 references of organizations who can verify the quality of the consultant’s work.

    Note: Preference will be given to applicants who include at least an executive summary from a past baselines or evaluations conducted.

    Interested and qualified? Go to Search For Common Ground’s International career website on to apply

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