Terms of Reference

CALL FOR PROPOSALS TO CONDUCT A PUBLIC EXPENDITURE TRACKING SURVEY (PETS) RESEARCH WITH SELECTED GOVERNMENT INSTITUTIONS

BACKGROUND:
Transparency International Sri Lanka (TISL) is the National Chapter of Transparency International (TI), the leading global movement against corruption committed to promoting good governance and eradicating corruption. As a local organisation, TISL raises awareness on the damaging effects of corruption, and works with partners in government, business and civil society to develop and implement effective measures to tackle it.

OBJECTIVE:
TISL seeks the services of a research consultant to carry out a Public Expenditure Tracking Survey (PETS). The public sector team of TISL who oversees this survey, was created with the goal of supporting towards a transparent and accountable public sector in Sri Lanka. To achieve this goal the public sector team is currently working with different government stakeholders.

It is widely acknowledged that corruption and inefficiency are deeply embedded in the public service sector. With the objective of finding out how and where such corruption and inefficiency happens, the TISL expects to conduct a PETS with two or three selected government institutions. This initiative is being conducted with financial support from the European Union under the Strengthening Accountability Networks among Civil Society (SANCUS) project.

The PETS methodology was developed by the World Bank and has been conducted in many countries over the past years. The survey involves tracing the flow of public resources for the provision of public goods or services from origin (budgeting/allocation stage) to destination (service-delivery stage) and it can help to detect bottlenecks, inefficiencies and/or corruption in the transfer of public goods and resources. Similarly, TISL expects to conduct the PETS with the help of two or three selected government institutions with the purpose of identifying transparency and accountability issues. These findings can then be used to improve systems within the participating institutions.

SCOPE OF WORK:
The following deliverables are expected from the Researcher/Research team:
• Propose an indicative scope of the survey looking at the timeline and the indicative budget
• Analytical input in the selection of the relevant government institution, to ensure the success of the PETS
• Design the survey including the report structure, methodology etc…
• Identify partners and key stakeholders with the help of TISL
• Gather and analyse data according to the approved design of the survey
• Draft the narrative of the report and share it with TISL for initial feedback
• On approval of the draft, finalize the narrative for the report using the data and information that has been gathered. TISL will provide input where necessary and will provide the final approval before proceeding towards publication.
• Develop and submit the timeline of the deliverables
• Translate the report to the Sinhala and Tamil languages
• Keep the TISL focal point informed about progress and any challenges encountered by way of progress reports and weekly calls as required

DURATION:
The Researcher/Research team is expected to complete the report within five months. Content for the report should be finalized by 15th December 2022.

BUDGET:
The proposed budget for this study is a maximum of 1,600,000 LKR inclusive of all related costs to be borne by the Researcher. A competitive proposal will be selected on a value for money basis.

THE IDEAL CANDIDATE SHOULD HAVE:
• A Bachelor’s Degree in Social Sciences, Humanities, Economics or any other related discipline.
• A working knowledge of how Public Sector is organized and operates.
• Familiarity with transparency, accountability and anti-corruption discourse.
• Research experience in critically analysing data and report writing.
• Professionalism and adherence to timelines.
• Ability to write succinctly and for a non-academic audience.
• Proven capacity to ensure objectivity and neutrality in analysis and report writing free from bias, influence and/or conflict of interest.
• Ability to conduct research under minimum supervision to obtain relevant information.
• Excellent written and oral English communication skills.
• Existing professional relationships with public sector stakeholders are an added advantage.

Application process:
Applicants should submit a proposal with a budget breakdown along with their CVs by 2nd September 2022 to careers@tisrilanka.org. ‘Researcher – Public Expenditure Tracking Survey (PETS)’ should be mentioned in the subject line of your email application.
Commencement of Duties – Immediate.

Recruitment of a Lead Research to conduct research on Money in Politics/Political Finance Legislation in Sri Lanka

Transparency International Sri Lanka (TISL) is the National Chapter of Transparency International (TI), the leading global movement against corruption. TISL is committed to promoting good governance and eradicating corruption in Sri Lanka.
TISL focuses on four strategic areas in its goal to eradicate corruption – corruption and accountability in the community sector, public sector, private sector and political sector. The Political sector of TISL advocates for accountability systems that minimize the abuse of political power and engages in enhancing accountability and transparency mechanisms in political structures and governance.
Envisioning a nation that upholds integrity, TISL has a zero-tolerance to any form of bribery or corruption and adheres to a strict anti-bribery and corruption policy in its work with all institutions and service providers, in order to carry out their functions upholding high standards of integrity and transparency.

Project Summary
Since 2004, Transparency International Sri Lanka (TISL) has worked as an accredited observer on every national election in Sri Lanka and has regularly reported on the misuse of public property during national elections. In 2016, with the support from the International Foundation for Electoral Systems (IFES), TISL conducted research on Election Campaign Finance in Sri Lanka, which sought to lay down the first principles on the issue, and examined the existing legal framework in the country. Leveraging these experiences, together with ongoing advocacy efforts and the Election Commission’s expressed willingness to actively engage on the issue of campaign finance regulation, TISL seeks to conduct research on the negative impacts of weak campaign finance provisions in Sri Lanka, with a particular focus on its disproportionate impact on the representation of women, minorities (particularly from lower socioeconomic backgrounds), young people and persons with disabilities. The research will be complemented with strategic advocacy and awareness-raising initiatives for policy makers, civil society, journalists, marginalized populations and the general public on money in politics and the need for strengthened campaign finance legislation.

Scope of Research
In this background TISL has planned to carry out a research on the negative impacts of weak election campaign finance provisions in Sri Lanka, with a particular focus on its disproportionate impact on the representation of women, minorities (particularly from lower socioeconomic backgrounds), young people and persons with disabilities. Findings from the research will be utilized to inform public awareness, mobilize stakeholders and advocate with policymakers such as the Parliamentary Select Committee on Election Law Reforms, members of Women Parliamentarians’ Caucus, representatives of political parties, ECSL officials etc. – for passage of the proposed campaign finance legislation.
The planned research builds on existing research conducted by TISL and others on election monitoring and campaign financing and will involve a thorough literature review on existing legislative frameworks (and lack thereof), as well as challenges for implementation and passage into law. Based on this analysis, specific research questions, methodology and research tools will be developed to capture the impact of weak political finance provisions in Sri Lanka, particularly on under-represented populations and the public at large.
This qualitative research will be conducted in all 9 provinces of Sri Lanka and will include key informant interviews with Election Commission officers, Parliamentarians, local and national politicians, academia, citizens and CSOs at both national and regional levels. There will be 3 FGDs organized in each province with civil society, local politicians and underrepresented groups. Each of these meetings will include a maximum of 10 participants.
There will also be 4 national-level FGDs with the ECSL, Parliamentarians, academics, and national-level CSOs. The FGDs will also consider a fair number of male and female participants.
A total of 31 FGDs will be conducted with a total of 290 participants, guided by structured questionnaires. The FGDs will be organized with the above-mentioned groups at all provincial and national levels. However, every provincial FGDs will include under-represented groups, particularly representatives of women’s groups, persons with disabilities, ethnic minority communities and youth groups, ensuring the accessibility of the research approaches (Ex: use of braille, audio methods, etc. where necessary). FGDs will also be conducted with officers at Elections Commissions offices in the 9 provinces, local politicians and other civil societies. In February 2022, TISL conducted short consultations in 3 provinces with the participation of 25 Elections Commission officers, 11 Local Politicians and 16 Civil Society representatives. These consultations proved useful for TISL to understand the ground-level issues related to ‘money in politics’. Based on this experience, throughout the process of conducting research and rolling out the advocacy strategy, consultations with similar group representation will be conducted in all 9 provinces to widen the scope of identifying evidence to justify the need for inclusive campaign finance reform.
Prior to beginning field work and on-the-ground research described above, a training and orientation session will be conducted by the Lead Researcher for the selected identified research team (ideally including research assistants for each province. The training will include information on the background of the project, data collection methods (particularly for qualitative data), as well as research ethics.

Call for Applications – Lead Researcher Consultancy
In this background, TISL expects to recruit a Lead researcher and their team (potentially 9 provincial research assistants) to conduct this research with the support of a coordinator provided by TISL, to formulate and carry out the research under the direct supervision of the Political Sector Manager of TISL. This position is on a temporary consultancy basis for a period of 6 months. The Lead Researcher is expected to find his/her own team of research assistants.

Deliverables
Description – Timeline

  1. Detailed proposal – 15 days from the recruitment
  2. Detailed Literature review – Within one month from the recruitment
  3. Development and finalization of the research tools – Within the second month of recruitment
  4. Conduct field work – From third month to fifth month
  5. First draft of the report – End of the fifth month
  6. Second draft – Last week of sixth month
  7. Finalization of the report – Second week of the seventh month
  8. Present the findings to the target audience – Third week of the seventh month
  9. Take part in the press conference (if required) – Fourth week of the seventh month

Application:
Interested candidates are requested to submit:
1. CV
2. Cover letter
3. A sample of similar work done

Budget: The initial short-listed candidates will be asked to submit a sample design for the proposed research including the expected budget.
Consultants will be selected on a value-for-money basis.

The application should be sent to tisl@tisrilanka.org before Monday the 28 of August 2022 with “Lead Researcher – Money in Politics” in the email subject line.

Recruitment of Research coordinator to manage research onMoney in Politics/Political Finance Legislation in Sri Lanka

Transparency International Sri Lanka (TISL) is the National Chapter of Transparency International (TI), the leading global movement against corruption. TISL is committed to promoting good governance and eradicating corruption in Sri Lanka.
TISL focuses on four strategic areas in its goal to eradicate corruption – corruption and accountability in the community sector, public sector, private sector and the political sector. The Political sector of TISL advocates for accountability systems that minimize the abuse of political power and engages in enhancing accountability and transparency mechanisms in political structures and governance.
Envisioning a nation that upholds integrity, TISL has a zero-tolerance to any form of bribery or corruption and adheres to a strict anti-bribery and corruption policy in its work with all institutions and service providers, in order to carry out their functions upholding high standards of integrity and transparency.

Project Summary
Since 2004, Transparency International Sri Lanka (TISL) has worked as an accredited observer on every national election in Sri Lanka and has regularly reported on the misuse of public property during national elections. In 2016, with the support from the International Foundation for Electoral Systems (IFES), TISL conducted research on Election Campaign Finance in Sri Lanka, which sought to lay down the first principles on the issue, and which examined the existing legal framework in the country. Leveraging these experiences, together with ongoing advocacy efforts and the Election Commission’s expressed willingness to actively engage on the issue of campaign finance regulation, TISL seeks to conduct research on the negative impacts of weak campaign finance provisions in Sri Lanka, with a particular focus on its disproportionate impact on the representation of women, minorities (particularly from lower socioeconomic backgrounds), young people and persons with disabilities. The research will be complemented with strategic advocacy and awareness-raising initiatives for policy makers, civil society, journalists, marginalized populations and the general public on money in politics and the need for strengthened campaign finance legislation.

Scope of Research
In this background TISL planned a research on the negative impacts of weak election campaign finance provisions in Sri Lanka, with a particular focus on its disproportionate impact on the representation of women, minorities (particularly from lower socioeconomic backgrounds), young people and persons with disabilities. Findings from the research will be utilized to inform public awareness and to mobilize stakeholders and to advocate with policy makers, such as the Parliamentary Select Committee on Election Law Reforms, members of Women Parliamentarians’ Caucus, representatives of political parties, ECSL officials etc. – for passage of the proposed campaign finance legislation.
The planned research builds on existing research conducted by TISL and others, on election monitoring and campaign financing and will involve a thorough literature review on existing legislative frameworks (and lack thereof), as well as challenges for implementation and passage into law. Based on this analysis, specific research questions, methodology and research tools will be developed to capture the impact of weak political finance provisions in Sri Lanka, particularly on under-represented populations and the public at large.
The qualitative research will be conducted in all 9 provinces of Sri Lanka and will include key informant interviews with Election Commission officers, Parliamentarians, local and national politicians, academia, citizens and CSOs at both national and regional levels. There will be 3 FGDs organized in each province with civil society, local politicians and underrepresented groups. Each of these meetings will include a maximum of 10 participants.
In addition to this there will be 4 national level FGDs with the ECSL, Parliamentarians, academics, and national level CSOs. The FGDs will also consider a fair number of male and female participants.
A total of 31 FGDs will be conducted with a total of 290 participants, guided by structured questionnaires. The FGDs will be organized with the above-mentioned groups at all provincial and national levels. However, every provincial FGDs will include under-represented groups, particularly representatives of women’s groups, persons with disabilities, ethnic minority communities and youth groups, ensuring the accessibility of the research approaches (Ex: use of braille, audio methods etc. where necessary). FGDs will also be conducted with officers at Elections Commissions offices in the 9 provinces, local politicians and other civil societies. In February 2022, TISL conducted short consultations in 3 provinces with the participation of 25 Elections Commission officers, 11 Local Politicians and 16 Civil Society representatives. These consultations proved useful for TISL to understand the ground level issues related to ‘money in politics’. Based on this experience, throughout the process of conducting research and rolling-out the advocacy strategy, consultations with similar group representation will be conducted in all 9 provinces to widen the scope of identifying evidence to justify the need for inclusive campaign finance reform.
Prior to beginning field work and on-the-ground research described above, a training and orientation session will be conducted by the Lead Researcher for the selected field-based research assistants. The training will include information on the background of the project, data collection methods (particularly for qualitative data), as well as research ethics. The training will be conducted for research assistants from the 9 provinces.

Call for ApplicationsResearch Coordinator Consultancy- one position based in Colombo – 6 months
The research coordinator (RC) is expected to:

  1. Coordinate and oversee the entire research consultancy work led by the Lead Researcher (LR) and Research Assistants (RA), in consultation with TISL Political Sector Manager.
  2. Ensure timely delivery of research activities (The RC will be expected to work closely with HR, Finance, Operations and all other internal sectors of TISL. i
  3. Liaise with necessary parties to facilitate coordination between TISL stakeholders and the Research Team, under the guidance of the TISL Political Sector Manager.
  4. Assist the TISL Political Sector Manager with any other assigned work related to the strategic priorities of TISL.

TISL expects the RC to have a minimum of 1 to 2 years’ experience in research. Experience within the political or anti-corruption sectors will be an added advantage.
Application:
Interested candidates are requested to submit:
1. CV
2. Cover letter

The application should be sent to tisl@tisrilanka.org on or before 31 of August 2022 with “Research Coordinator – Money in Politics” in the email subject line.