TERMS OF REFERENCE FOR A CONSULTANCY TO CONDUCT RESEARCH ON INCLUSION OF PERSONS WITH DISABILITIES IN HIGHER EDUCATION INSTITUTIONS IN ETHIOPIA

I.   BACKGROUND

The Raoul Wallenberg Institute of Human Rights and Humanitarian Law (RWI), Lund University, is an academic and research institution based in Lund, Sweden. RWI has been engaged in human rights capacity development in Sub-Saharan Africa since 1991 through regional, sub-regional and bilateral cooperation programmes focusing on academic institutions, justice sector institutions and National Human Rights Institutions. With its office in Nairobi, the RWI manages an extensive network, knowledge and understanding in relation to human rights and human rights work in Sub-Saharan Africa and furthermore implements, with the Swedish government’s support, a regional Sub-Saharan Africa programme that aims to strengthen implementation of human rights commitments through cooperation with relevant regional and sub-regional actors.

The Center for Human Rights (CHR), one of the academic units at the College of Law and Governance Studies of Addis Ababa University, is an autonomous human rights institute engaged in teaching, research and community services in an interdisciplinary setting. It offers the MA and PhD programs in human rights – focusing on producing high-level professionals who will be qualified to work as academics, researchers and practitioners in inter-governmental, governmental and non-governmental organizations. The CHR is furthermore engaged in extensive community services – including the provision of legal aid services to the poor and vulnerable sections of the society with office presences in six cities in Ethiopia. 

The RWI and the CHR are currently implementing a bilateral cooperation program running from 1 November 2018 – 31 December 2021 – which aims at supporting, within the framework of strategic interventions and detailed activities identified by both partners, the effective implementation of certain components of the CHR’s Project to Support the Human Rights Teaching, Training, Research and Community Engagement financed by the Swedish Government.

The programmatic focus of the institutional partnership and assistance offered by the RWI are structured along three key themes, namely: ‘Multidisciplinary Human Rights Teaching and Training’;Policy and Practice Collaboration and Diffusion’; and ‘Learning, Partnerships and Capacity Development’.

II.  OBJECTIVESOFTHEASSIGNMENT

The overall objective of this assignment is to carry out research on how the rights of PWDs (particularly visually impaired and deaf students) are addressed within Ethiopia’s higher education institutions, particularly focusing on Addis Ababa University. The discourse on the realization of the rights of PWDs has overtime moved from a ‘charity based approach’ to ‘ rights based approach’ and is gaining more momentum with the advance in technology to address different aspects of disability.

While the basis on which services are granted/ accessed by persons with disabilities needs an investigation of its own, the purpose of this consultancy is to explore the existing system and assistive technologies in place to realize the rights of PWDs at AAU and identify the key gaps and challenges. The findings of this consultancy can also provide an insight on the level of awareness of the rights of PWDs at higher educational institutions, at all departments and schools.

 

III.   SCOPE OF WORK

         a. Specific tasks

Under the overall supervision of RWI’s Ethiopia Programme Officer and CHR’s Programme Officer in the Bilateral Collaboration, the Consultant will do the following:

  • Develop a work plan and inception report
  • Complete a desk review assessment of relevant local and international documents (such as laws, policy documents, guidelines etc…), standard systems, strategies, best practices, standard internal rules/polices of higher education institutions on PWDs, and assistive technologies in educational institutions to realize the rights of PWDs ( particularly focusing on visual impairment and disability relating to loss of hearing capacity)
  • The desk review should also include inventory of the current state of assistive devices in the world;
  • Design the assessment methodology (in consultation with CHR) and examine the existing rules, practices, the overall systems and state of assistive technologies at AAU to realize the rights of PWDs and identify the gaps with due regard to the findings of the desk review.
    • Keep an inventory of the available resources/mechanisms at AAU
    • Document lessons learned, problems and good practices throughout the assessment
  • Develop a draft action plan towards addressing the identified gaps and validate those

 

       b.  Deliverables

  • Work-plan and inception report
  • Report of the desk review, including inventory of assistive technology in the world and tools for the actual assessment;
  • Internal Final report on findings
  • Inventory of existing tools/assistive technologies at AAU
  • draft action plan
  • Research brief to be publicly disseminated;

 

IV.   PROPOSED METHODOLOGY

The tasks for this consultancy will be administered in two phases.

Phase I will constitute;

  • Developing work-plan and inception note
  • Conduct desk review and develop report
  • Develop tools for conducting the investigation, research and assessment
  • Prepare list of stakeholders within and outside AAU

 

Phase II will constitute;

  • Conduct actual investigation, research and assessment
  • Developing report of the investigation, research and assessment
  • Developing draft action plan in response to the result of the investigation
  • Developing tools for an action to be selected by CHR and RWI among the draft action plan

The assessment for phase I will run for duration of 13 working days between 31 October and 13 December 2019.

The assessment period for phase II will be in early 2020 (To be determined by RWI and CHR).

The second phase may adopt a consultative and participative approach and may rely on both quantitative i.e. surveys; and qualitative data collection methods such as semi structured interviews (for example with focus groups, key informant, large groups, individual interviews, etc.) as necessary. This will include interviews with key stakeholders.

The consultant will assist with the analysis of the findings in consultation with RWI and CHR and will conclude with the submission of a draft report based on the findings. All deliverables will also be validated by CHR and RWI

 

V.   REQUIRED QUALIFICATIONS:

a. Advanced university degree in Law, or any of the Social Sciences; a Master’s degree on the aforementioned is desirable;

b. Expert knowledge on disability rights, as well as related rights and legal frameworks;

c. Minimum of at least seven (7) years of relevant experience including experience in conducting high-level research studies and conducting interviews with research informants;

d. Ability to write well and articulate issues in concise language; and

e. Produce high-quality outputs in a timely manner, while understanding and anticipating the evolving needs of the client;

f. Work independently and produce high-quality outputs; and also work in strong team spirit and collaboration with another expert that will be identified for the task.

g. Demonstrate integrity by modelling RWI’s values and ethical standards and promote the vision, mission and strategic goals of RWI.

 h. Excellent written and spoken English.

 

VI.    APPLICATION INSTRUCTIONS

Qualified candidates should submit their application by sending a Cover Letter, Resume and detailed proposal to conduct the research outlining their understanding of this task, proposed methodology, work plan and budget by 30 October 2019 at / before 12:00pm (noon) to dureti.fulas@gmail.com and copy nairobi@rwi.lu.se Please group all your documents into one PDF document, with the following asthe email subject line: CONSULTANCY TO CONDUCT RESEARCH ON RIGHTS OF PWDs IN ETHIOPIA- (Your Name).