Collaboration, Learning and Adaptation Consultant (International)

Terms of Reference

Collaboration, Learning and Adaptation Consultant (International) 


Hanoi (main office), Lao Cai, Son La

Assignment duration

12 months with the possibility of extension


50 (approximately)

Start date

April 2020

Deadline to apply

5pm, 3 April 2020



With more than 30 years of experience, Cowater International is Canada’s global leader in management consulting services specializing in international development. We have managed the implementation of over 800 projects in more than 80 countries around the globe for clients such as DFID, DFAT Australia, the World Bank and Global Affairs Canada. We work with governments, partner organizations, communities and civil society to design and implement sustainable solutions that generate lasting social, economic and environmental impacts. Our adaptive approach to management has led to our award-winning work and recognition as one of Canada’s Best Managed Companies in 2017 and 2018.


Cowater International is seeking to recruit a highly qualified international Collaboration, Learning and Adaptation Consultant for the Aus4Equality|Gender Responsive Equitable Agriculture and Tourism (GREAT) Program.

The GREAT Program is a flagship initiative of the Australian aid program in Vietnam – it commenced in November 2017 and will run for five years (2017 to 2021). The Program seeks to promote women’s economic empowerment (WEE) in the ethnically diverse north-west region of Vietnam. The primary beneficiaries are women living in the provinces of Son La and Lao Cai with a focus on economic inclusion for of women from ethnic minority communities.

The objectives of the Aus4Equality|GREAT Program are:

  • Objective 1 – Empowering local women: Women living in local communities have increased capacity, space and choices to beneficially engage with agriculture and tourism businesses.
  • Objective 2 – Inclusive businesses partnerships: Selected private sector actors within the agriculture and tourism sectors innovate to profitably and sustainably trade with more women entrepreneurs and operate in gender sensitive ways.
  • Objective 3 – Improving sector governance and policy: Government agencies reinforce policies, and enact plans, regulations and services that enable more inclusive socio-economic development.

Key approaches applied by the program include: Market system development (MSD), Partnership, Adaptive Management, Gender Equality and Social Inclusion (GESI), Women’s Economic Empowerment (WEE) and Innovation. The program is partnering with approximately 50 partners to deliver results, including private sector actors, governmental and non-governmental organizations, and research institutions.

The Program is tackling complex issues and pathways to women’s economic empowerment are multiple, unpredictable, non-linear, and not always well-understood. To better integrate gender and market systems thinking, the Program has developed an Inclusive Systems Development Framework. Tailored responses are also needed to deal with ethnic diversity. Given the complexity, the Program gives a high degree of emphasis to research and systematic learning.


Reporting to the Monitoring, Evaluation, Research and Learning (MERL) Manager, the Collaboration, Learning and Adaptation Consultant will work with the Program’s technical and MERL teams to lead knowledge management for the GREAT Program and the development of the Collaboration, Learning and Adaptation plan. This will include synthesising and analysing available evidence, producing learning products such as thematic papers or presentations and sharing key learning points with the team, partners and stakeholders. The Consultant will also conduct desk reviews and share evidence on good practice from other gender, women’s economic empowerment and market systems development projects to build GREAT’s knowledge. Relevant learning products will be published to promote the community of practice on Women’s Economic Empowerment both nationally and internationally.


  • Work closely with the Team Leader/Deputy Team Leader, MERL Manager and Senior Management Team to understand the Program’s current Collaboration, Learning and Adaptation approach and needs.

  • Develop the Program’s Collaboration, Learning and Adaptation plan.

  • Synthesize and analyse evidence from GREAT’s Management Information System and other sources to identify issues at both the GREAT Program level and within individual projects as a focus for collaborative learning.

  • Conduct interviews with relevant stakeholders as required, to collect additional evidence and document lessons learned from Program implementation.

  • Produce thematic papers on WEE/MSD which can be used by the Program for different purposes, including publication for knowledge dissemination and policy advocacy.

  • Develop a “knowledge bank’ and keep it updated to capture relevant global studies and reports that can inform the Program.

  • Organise and/or facilitate interactive collaborative learning for adaptation activities, including internal learning sessions and partner forums.


Demonstrated Knowledge and Skills:

  • Extensive knowledge of WEE/MSD with experience in undertaking projects or studies in these areas.

  • Understanding of research design and concepts.

  • Ability to search, understand, and synthesise/summarise existing studies and literature.

  • Proven critical thinking and analytical skills.

  • Strong collaboration and teamwork skills.

  • Strong reporting and writing skills.

  • Excellent skills in qualitative research, data processing and analysis.

  • Excellent written and spoken communication skills in English.

  • Practical experience with international development projects.

  • Practical experience working in Vietnam with ethnic minorities is an advantage.

Required Technical and Professional Expertise

  • Tertiary qualification in development, sociology, economics, gender or closely related field

  • 10 years of research/working experience with WEE/MSD issues.


Please apply by sending a CV and a Cover letter to [email protected] no later than 5pm 3 April 2020, with the position title in the subject of the email.

Job Details
Organisation Name: 
Aus4Equality| GREAT Program
Application Deadline: 
Fri, 2020-04-03