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Irish Rule of Law International (IRLI) seeks the services of a consultant to assist it in developing a new multi-year project proposal for the Embassy of Ireland.

Irish Rule of Law International (IRLI) is an initiative of the Law Society of Ireland, the Bar of Ireland, the Law Society of Northern Ireland and the Bar of Northern Ireland, dedicated to promoting the rule of law in developing countries.

IRLI’s programme in Malawi aims to improve access to justice for unrepresented accused persons in the criminal justice system in targeted areas in the Central Region of Malawi. The approach is twofold: capacity building of criminal justice institutions, and support of direct legal service provision. A Programme Lawyer (PL) is seconded to each of the key criminal justice institutions, namely the Legal Aid Bureau (LAB), Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP), the Malawi Police Service (MPS) and the Malawi judiciary. IRLI also works with the Ministry of Gender on a child diversion programme for children in conflict with the law.

In each institution, the PLs works to build relationships based on mutual trust and respect, in order to support the institution in enhancing access to justice for vulnerable persons. IRLI seeks to remove obstacles to access to justice in the short-term in order to bring about immediate change at beneficiary level, while also developing systemic, sustainable interventions aimed at providing longterm benefits in the wider criminal justice sector.

The current programme is funded primarily by the Irish Embassy to Malawi (July 2016 - August 2020),with a new grant approved from September 2020 – August 2021, and was funded by the European Union Delegation (December 2016 – December 2019, with a no cost extension until March 2020).

As the current programme is coming to an end, IRLI needs to develop a comprehensive and exciting multi-year project proposal for the Embassy of Ireland that complements the Embassy’s strategic plan (to be provided). This consultant will capitalise and build on the lessons learned and successes achieved from the previous programme, while also eliciting and identifying what did not work and engaging with the Malawi team to devise suitable alternatives. The consultant will bring to the programme previous design process experience from developing and writing successful integrated, multi-sectoral, proposals involving several stakeholders for institutional donors. Though not essential, it would be desirable that the consultant also brings a good understanding of issues relating to access to justice and human rights. Building upon this experience, the consultant will help develop the programme proposal for responding to the needs of the justice sector. This will require scoping, reviewing, analysing, and integrating existing plans, projects, and areas of expertise.

An organisational review of IRLI has recently been conducted, as has an end-of-programme evaluation of the Malawi programme specifically; the consultant will use the findings and recommendations of these reports to further inform the project proposal.

The evaluation aims to:

  1. Collate and analyse lessons learned, challenges faced and best practices established during the implementation period.
  2. Develop a comprehensive and dynamic project proposal for the Embassy of Ireland;
  3. Develop an informed and appropriate monitoring and evaluation framework for the proposal;
  4. Develop an accurate and ambitious budget proposal.

The evaluation will combine qualitative and quantitative data collection and evaluation techniques using the following methods:

  • Desk-based review: The consultant will review relevant programme documents and content produced before and during programme implementation, including previous evaluations, programme proposals, work plans, annual and interim reports;
  • Retreat with the Malawi Team: a retreat with the Malawi Team will be conducted to offer a structured and focused opportunity for the team to feed into the proposal;
  • Focus Group Discussions: Data will also be collected using focus groups discussion with programme beneficiaries and other project stakeholders, particularly the Embassy of Ireland, using a pre-designed focus group discussion guide;
  • Lessons learned/best practice workshop: Facilitate a workshop to analyse and compile lessons learning and best practice with IRLI staff.

The evaluation will start in late May 2021 and will take no longer than 21 working days.

  1. Inception Report An inception report will outline the key scope of the work and intended work plan of the analysis, and project proposal questions. The inception report should detail the consultant’s understanding of the programme and needs of the proposal. The inception report should include a proposed schedule of tasks, activities and deliverables. 3 days
  2. Data Collection Undertake desk review, carry out key informant interviews, conduct staff retreat and review relevant documents. 10 days
  3. Data analysis and draft project proposal Presentation of initial report to the IRLI team for review and feedback 4 days
  4. Final project proposal: The final proposal should be submitted after incorporating the comments received from the IRLI and Embassy of Ireland teams.4 days
  5. The consultant will report to IRLI’s Country Programme Manager in Malawi. Ultimate management responsibility lies with IRLI’s Director of Programmes in Dublin. Feedback and comments will be provided by the full IRLI team as well as Embassy of Ireland staff.


IRLI is expecting to contract one lead consultant to work primarily in Lilongwe, Malawi. The consultant shall have the following expertise and qualifications:

  • At least 10 years of experience in working with international organisations and donors, developing programmes with multiple partners with complex implementation modalities;
  • A Masters' Degree in social science, international development, law or related field (or equivalent);
  • Proven ability to develop programme proposals that are successful in securing funding from international donors;
  • Proven ability to deliver high quality outputs within the proposed timeframe;
  • Adept analytical and report writing skills;
  • Excellent interpersonal skills and an understanding of cultural sensitivities;
  • Experience in evaluating similar justice programmes is a strong advantage;
  • Experience working in Malawi is a strong advantage.

Along with their Curriculum Vitae/resumé interested candidates should submit:

  1. 1) A technical proposal explaining their comprehension of the Terms of Reference and how they would approach this assignment within the given time (3-page maximum)
  2. 2) Two samples of similar previous assignments;
  3. 3) A financial proposal outlining their expected fees and other expenses.
Applications must be submitted by email by 5pm (Central Africa Time) on Monday 17th May to the Country Programme Manager, Susie Kiely –


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