Database Consultant - Call for tender

Application deadline: 
Friday, 17. July 2020 - 23:45

1 INTRODUCTION
1.1. Introduction to the organization
 
BirdLife International is a global Partnership of autonomous, national non-governmental conservation organisations, with a large grassroots membership, in 120 countries and territories. BirdLife works together as a Partnership to conserve wild birds, their habitats and global biodiversity, by working with people towards sustainability in the use of natural resources. BirdLife is the global authority on the status of bird species, has unparalleled technical expertise in bird and biodiversity assessment, and provides a global outreach through its national Partners and decentralised Secretariat.  
 
BirdLife Europe and Central Asia is the regional division of BirdLife International, and is one of the six BirdLife regional offices around the world. It is composed of an international team of permanent staff working on conservation, capacity building, policy, management, finance, fundraising, advocacy, science, communication, marketing and administration. BirdLife Europe supports the European and Central Asia Partnership of BirdLife International, which consists of 45 independent, grassroots Civil Society Organisations, governed by a democratic programme.
 
Stichting BirdLife Europe is looking for a consultant who could carry out collect data on relevant European databases and organize them into a structured international meta-database.
 
1.2. Introduction to the project
 
Illegal activities such as killing, trapping or trading birds still occur in many EU countries, with several countries identified as particular hotspots. In addition, widespread illegal practices outside the EU affect directly on migratory species within the EU. This forms a threat to the attainment of the objectives of the Birds Directive and the first target of the EU biodiversity strategy, which aims to improve the conservation status of EU species.
The project, titled “Delivering the EU Biodiversity Strategy: Awareness and Capacity Building against Bird Crime in Priority Flyway Countries”, shortly “LIFE against Bird Crime” is an EU-funded project that started in 2018 and runs until early 2022. 
The long-term goal of the project is to significantly reduce the illegal killing, trapping and taking of birds in the EU and neighbouring Mediterranean region.
Specific objectives include:
- Expand and improve knowledge on the illegal killing of birds (IKB) in the target region, in order to identify and promote strategic actions within and beyond the scope of the project;
- Raise awareness and stimulate public demand to stop IKB;
- Support increased international and national advocacy efforts to ensure political commitment and technical capacity to enforce actions to end IKB;
- Design and implement pilot projects with key stakeholders in priority countries to demonstrate, share and promote effective approaches to reduce illegal killing and taking of birds;
- Contribute towards achieving the objectives of the Birds Directive, the EU roadmap for combating illegal killing, trapping and trade of birds, and the EU 2020 biodiversity strategy;
- Maintain and strengthen the networks of civil society organisations and stakeholder groups working together to address IKB.
 
2 OVERALL PURPOSE OF JOB
The true extent of the issue of illegal killing of birds is still poorly-known in much of Europe. A BirdLife study published in 2016 on the scope and scale of illegal killing of birds in the Mediterranean shed some light on the problem, but the uniqueness of country/region, culture and resulting threats means, that current data is still difficult to compare across nations and that continuous communication is necessary to successfully tackle the issue on the level of EU or the Mediterranean as a whole.
In order to ensure that the data collected on illegal killing of birds is robust and universally useful, we want to establish a unified platform for sharing data between NGOs conducting monitoring activities and national law enforcement institutions, multinational institutions (European Commission) and multilateral environmental agreements, such as the Bern Convention.
In the frame of the LIFE against Bird Crime project we aim to develop the necessary processes for the timely and relevant exchange of information on illegal killing among the mentioned stakeholders.  We want the consultant to map the existing national, regional and international databases on bird (wildlife) crimes. This will create a meta-database on relevant data sources, as well as a basis of managing gaps and interpreting existing data. 
Furthermore, based on the participating partners' experience, needs and capacities, a structured database for data on illegal killing of birds on the level of the European Union will be designed. The database should provide for moderated participation, i.e. registered participants should be able to upload data regularly, generate reports and statistics, etc. Its public section will provide for non-moderated public access to the non-sensitive data.  The database to be developed must be international in scale, use a set of common protocols that will enable comparison and monitoring at regional levels. 
The consultant must map in the different EU member states which organizations, authorities collect bird crime data and he/she needs to understand how they collect the data, what type of data they collect, who owns the data etc. These information should be organized and stored in a structured database.
By having an understanding about the structures of existing data sources, the consultant is expected to advise on the most cost-efficient way of collecting, revising and storing data at European level.  He/she must define the process of data acquisition, provide support to train people to use the database and build a plan for its future maintenance and development.
 
3 TASKS
3.1 Phase I: Preparation
 
- Perform a detailed review of existing documentation (project objectives, findings of the database workshop etc.) workshop 
- List relevant stakeholders that needs to be consulted with
- Familiarize with relevant existing databases and systems
- Arrange information on relevant databases in a meta-database
- Develop a written plan for development of a EU-level bird crime database system which is specific to the needs 
 
Issues to determine include:
-what database platform will be used
-what functional and non-functional requirements are necessary
-what information needs to be collected
-what are the critical processes, which can produce the required information
-what type of analysis, visualization etc. would be recommended
-what data standards will be employed
-what procedures will be used to ensure quality (accuracy, integrity, and completeness)
-how will data storage and preservation be handled
-how will data security management (access, erasure, security, ownership) be ensured
-how will long-term operation be ensured (access, maintenance, development, financial plan)
-what procedures will be used to process, upload, transfer, and share data
 
- the consultant is expected to develop a proposal for the recommended systems, work plan and schedule of tasks, with corresponding deliverables
 
3.2 Phase II: Designing the database
 
The consultant will 
 
- develop a standard operating procedures manual for the Bird Crime database that will include an explanation on how:
a) data are entered
b) validation/cleaning of data
c) analyzing data  
d) interpret and communicate findings
e) to transfer data to partners and other stakeholders 
f) to store data
g) to secure and protect data.
 
- design the database based on the Phase I recommendations and system requirements
- perform functional tests
- produce complete technical documentation
- produce training material
- train system administrators and users on the database operations
- provide technical and user support services
- provide the recommendations for the future development of this database, an evaluation on linking it with other existing national databases and enabling integration of data across databases.
 
4 QUALIFICATIONS REQUIRED
Have a relevant academic degree (additional work experience may be accepted in lieu of this);
Have relevant experience with implementation of the EU Birds Directive;
Have in-depth understanding of data management and database development;
Be capable of understanding and presenting, in written and oral form the key findings;
Have very good understanding of bird conservation issues, be familiar with conservation status of European birds and have a sound understanding of the different types of illegal killing of birds;
Have excellent communications skills;
Speak and write English fluently, with fluency in other EU languages being considered an asset.
 
5 BIRDLIFE OFFERS
The budget for the tender: 15 000 – 25 000 EUR (excluding VAT) 
Payments will be made upon satisfactory completion and/or submission of outputs/deliverables, as outlined in the work contract.
The price for the tender must be quoted in euro. Tenderers from countries outside the euro zone have to quote their prices in euro. The price quoted may not be revised in line with exchange rate movements. It is for the tenderer to assume the risks or the benefits deriving from any variation.
 
 
6 TENDERING
Prospective consultants are invited to submit proposals before Friday 17th July 2020, 12:00 CET. The proposals should be sent to lilla.barabas@birdlife.org (by email only) specifying the following:
 
Work-plan with time schedule reflecting all the deliverables
Financial proposal providing cost estimates and consultancy fees (VAT excluded)
Competence/experience of the person who would actually be providing the service; CV and cover letter describing how the service is going to be rendered to be attached
Date when consultant would be able to start.