Category 2 institutes and centres under the auspices of UNESCO are a global network of institutions of excellence in the Organization’s domains of competence. Given their expertise, these institutes and centres contribute to the implementation of UNESCO’s priorities, programmes, and global development agendas during a defined period. They foster international and regional cooperation, research, knowledge production, policy advice, and capacity enhancement. Though independent of UNESCO, category 2 institutes and centres are a privileged partner of the Organization with access to UNESCO’s logo, international and intergovernmental bodies and networks, and may leverage UNESCO’s international reach and convening powers. Category 2 institutes and centres under the auspices of UNESCO are an integral part of the Organization’s Comprehensive Partnership Strategy.
The UNESCO Strategy for Category 2 Institutes and Centres under the auspices of UNESCO provides that an agreement for the establishment of a category 2 institute or centre is typically concluded for a defined time period, not exceeding eight years. The agreement may be renewed by the Director-General, with the approval of the Executive Board, in light of an evaluation of the activities of the institute/centre and of its contribution to the strategic programme objectives of the Organization and the aforementioned Strategy.
The 34rd session of the General Conference, in its 34 C/Resolution 40, approved the establishment in the Republic of Croatia of the International Centre for Underwater Archaeology (hereafter, ‘the Centre’). An agreement between the Government of the Republic of Croatia and UNESCO was signed accordingly. Following the first evaluation undertaken in 2015, a new agreement was signed between UNESCO and the Government of the Republic of Croatia in 2016, which entered into force on 23 February 2017 for the period of six years (2017-2023). The Government of the Republic of Croatia submitted a request for renewal of the agreement. To this end, an evaluation of the Centre will be carried out.
The objectives of the Centre are to:
a) strongly promote the 2001 Convention and its implementation in the European Union, Southeast Europe and in other Member States of UNESCO;
b) Function as focal point and provide a platform for dialogue and participation in the field of underwater archaeology within the European Union, Southeast Europe and worldwide;
c) train underwater archaeologists and conservation specialists, nationally and internationally, practically and theoretically;
d) improve, through the fostering of international cooperation, scientific research on underwater cultural heritage sites, analysis of finds and their presentation and restoration of objects recovered from the water, as well as seek to join international efforts in this area;
e) foster and facilitate the exchange of knowledge in the discipline of underwater archaeology in the European Union, Southeast Europe and in State Parties to the 2001 Convention;
f) organize international conferences and workshops; and,
g) educate the public I order to raise awareness on the underwater cultural heritage among the public at large.
The main objectives of this evaluation are to assess the Centre’s performance with respect to its objectives (see above), and its contribution to UNESCO’s Approved Programme and Budget (C/5), including global strategies and action plans as well as sectoral programme priorities. The conclusions of the renewal evaluation shall be submitted to the UNESCO Intersectoral Review Committee that will make the recommendation to the Director-General as to whether an agreement with the Centre should be renewed or not. Based on this recommendation, the UNESCO Executive Board will examine the renewal request, decide on the renewal or non-renewal of the designation of the Centre as a category 2 centre under the auspices of UNESCO and authorize the Director-General to conclude an agreement with the Government of Croatia.
The conclusions of the renewal evaluation shall be shared with the Government of the Republic of Croatia and the Centre, and will be made available on the website of the 2001 Convention on the Protection of the Underwater Cultural Heritage (www.unesco.org/culture/underwater)).
The following parameters shall be considered by the independent experts contracted to undertake the renewal evaluation. The independent experts shall have had no prior affiliation with the Centre and shall draft the renewal evaluation in English:
- the extent to which the Centre’s objectives as set out in the agreement signed with UNESCO were achieved;
- the relevance of the contribution of the Centre’s programmes and activities to the achievement of UNESCO’s prevailing Approved Programme and Budget (C/5) at the time in which it was designated, including global strategies and action plans as well as sectoral programme priorities, as defined in the agreement, in particular, to the implementation of the 2001 Convention and capacity-building in underwater archaeology;
- the relevance of the contribution of the activities of the Centre to global development agendas, notably to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the related SDGs;
- the quality of coordination and interaction with UNESCO, both at Headquarters and in the field, as well as with National Commissions, other thematically-related category 1 and 2 institutes or centres with regard to planning and implementation of programmes;
- the partnerships developed and maintained with government agencies, public or private partners and donors;
- the nature and efficiency of the Centre’s governance, including organizational arrangements, management, human resources and accountability mechanisms;
- the financial resources available for ensuring sustainable institutional capacity and viability, and,
- the extent to which the Centre enjoys within its territory the autonomy necessary for the execution of its activities and legal capacity to contract, institute legal proceedings, and to acquire and dispose of movable and immovable property.
The renewal evaluation of the Centre will include:
· A desk study of relevant documents, provided by the Centre and UNESCO Secretariat;
· A visit to the Centre, including interviews with the Centre’s management and staff (if the sanitary condition related to COVID-19 allows. If not, online interviews) ;
· Interviews (telephone, online and/or via e-mail) with the Centre’s stakeholders, collaborators, and beneficiaries as well as UNESCO staff concerned;
· Preparation of the renewal evaluation report and the preliminary draft agreement to be concluded between UNESCO, the Centre, and the Government of the Republic of Croatia, based on the model provided by UNESCO, in case the evaluation recommends the renewal.
UNESCO shall make the following documents available to the review team in electronic form:
- The Executive Board and General Conference documents concerning the establishment of the Centre;
- The existing Agreement between the Government of the Republic of Croatia and UNESCO concerning the establishment of the Centre, together with its amendment;
- The Medium-term Strategy 2014-2021 (37 C/4), Approved programme and budget 2016-2017 (38 C/5), Approved programme and budget 2018-2019 (39 C/5) and Approved programme and budget 2020-2021 (40 C/5);
- Relevant correspondence concerning the cooperation between UNESCO and the Centre.
The Centre shall make the following documents available to the review team in English, in electronic or paper form:
- Annual progress reports;
- Financial reports;
- List of staff;
- List of key publications;
- List of donors and project partners;
- Minutes, decisions and working documents of the Governing Board and Executive Committee meetings;
- Report of support provided to or received from Member States;
- Available audit and evaluation reports;
- Account of networking achievements linked with other thematically related category 2 institutes or centres and UNESCO’s programmes.
Draft evaluation report
A draft report will present findings, conclusions and recommendations, with a draft executive summary. The UNESCO Culture Sector, the Government of the Republic of Croatia and the Centre itself will have the opportunity to comment and give feedback to the evaluation team.
Final evaluation report
The final report (max. 20 pages, excluding annexes) should be structured as follows:
· Executive summary (maximum four pages);
· Introduction (background, purpose and scope);
· General recommendations to the Centre for improving the effectiveness of its operations and for UNESCO for improving the effectiveness of its coordination and interaction with the Centre; specific recommendations for amending the provisions of the agreement in order to improve the functioning and activities of the Centre;
· Annexes, including a draft agreement to be concluded between UNESCO, the Centre and the Government of the Republic of Croatia in case the evaluation recommends the renewal, interview list, data collection instruments, key documents consulted, and terms of reference.
The language of the report shall be English.
Requirements for the renewal evaluation team
The evaluation will be conducted by a team of gender-balanced independent experts. A single proposal/expression of interest must be submitted on behalf of the team.
The team should have the following qualifications:
· At least 7 years of professional experience in research and/or capacity-building in the field of cultural heritage, cultural diversity, cultural policy or culture and development;
· At least 7 years of professional experience in policy and programme evaluation in the context of international development;
· Excellent knowledge of English (written and spoken);
· Knowledge of the role and mandate of UNESCO and its programmes.
Roles and responsibilities
Local travel, materials, secretarial support and office space will be provided by the Centre during the visit. The experts will be responsible for telecommunications and printing of documentation.
The Underwater Cultural Heritage Unit of the UNESCO Culture Sector will facilitate and oversee the renewal evaluation process, to the extent possible, by providing any relevant information, and will be responsible for evaluating and approving the final report.
The renewal evaluation shall be completed no later than 30 January 2022
The schedule for the evaluation is as follows:
· A desk study of background documents (to be completed prior to the visit to the Centre);
· Visit (or online consultation) to the Centre; September/October 2021
· Writing and submission of the draft evaluation report and no later than 30 November 2021;
· Submission of the final evaluation report (before 30 January 2022).
The date of the mission to the Centre will be defined by UNESCO in coordination with the Centre and taking into account the availability of evaluator(s).
 Available at https://unesdoc.unesco.org/ark:/48223/pf0000373390
How to apply
Submission of proposals
Proposals should be submitted in English, consisting of:
- Curriculum vitae of expert(s)/evaluator(s) and, if applicable, a company profile;
- Letter expressing interest and clearly identifying how the team meets the required skills and experience;
- An approach and methodology for the assignment, a Workplan and comments on the Terms of Reference if any (in brief);
- A total cost (quoted in US dollars), distinguishing the fees for services from the travel expenses, with a breakdown of the cost and number of working hours required for each phase of the schedule.
Applications should be submitted no later than 26 July 2021 midnight (Paris time) to the Underwater Cultural Heritage Unit (email@example.com). Please note that applications submitted through other channels will not be considered. Selection will be made on the basis of best value for money.