- BACKGROUND INFORMATION
- Contracting Authority
The contracting authority is the Balkan Civil Society Development Network (BCSDN) Executive Office, Skopje.
- Legal Basis
The legal basis for this assignment derives from the Grant Agreement No. 12715 01 signed between the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida) and the Balkan Civil Society Development Network (BCSDN), where Sida has agreed to provide financial support to the project “Protecting Civic Space – Regional Civil Society Development Hub”.
- Relevant Background
Balkan Civil Society Development Network (BCSDN) is a network of civil society organizations from countries in southeast Europe (Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Kosovo, Montenegro, Republic of North Macedonia, Romania, Slovenia, Serbia, and Turkey). Our mission is to empower civil society and influence European and national policies towards a more enabling environment for civil society development to ensure sustainable and functioning democracies in the Balkans.
Our goals and objectives are the following:
- To increase the role of civil society by strengthening its voice in policy- and decision-making at the national, regional and EU levels;
- To promote the civil dialogue between the civil society actors, state institutions and the European Union to influence public policies;
- To develop advocacy knowledge and skills among civil society actors as a base for greater impact;
- To strengthen communication, coordination, and cooperation between the civil society actors in the Balkan region.
Following BCSDN’s and its members’ common vision to strengthen a vibrant, pluralistic and rights-based civil society in the Balkans, Sida has granted significant financial support to BCSDN for the implementation of the project “Protecting Civic Space – Regional Civil Society Development Hub” (hereinafter referred to as “the Project”) which was initiated in September 2019.
BCSDN through this Project aimed to establish a Regional Civil Society Development Hub (hereinafter referred to as the “Regional Hub”) as a regional center with a global impact that will create and share knowledge and innovation on CSOs’ role in promoting democracy and supporting the development of civil society in the Western Balkans in the long term. The Regional Hub will support effective, transparent, and accountable CSOs that will contribute to protecting and promoting civic space for a vibrant, pluralistic, and rights-based civil society in the Balkans. The Regional Hub’s main aim is to strengthen regional cooperation in promoting the civic space in the Western Balkan. Over the course of two and a half years, the Regional Hub supported the implementation of 38 various projects that contributed to the empowerment of CSOs and promotion of civic space in the Western Balkans and supported the establishment of numerous partnerships among CSOs in the region. Despite the wealth of information generated, the project in its pilot phase did not foresee activities for archiving the knowledge, resource and experience gathered. All information about the Regional Hub is currently available in one section of the BCSDN website: https://www.balkancsd.net/regional-cs-hub/.
Another part of the Project is the annual monitoring of the enabling environment for CSOs development in the region, an activity performed by BCSDN since 2012. This monitoring is based on a comprehensive methodology, assessing the main principles and standards that needed to be in place in one country to support the operations of the CSOs and their development. Every year, seven country reports and one regional report are produced, providing a comprehensive overview of the policy and legal framework that governs the civil society, the main findings per country, as well as recommendations for improvement, addressed mainly to governments in the region. Since 2018, scoring was introduced in the methodology as a way to enable a more visual and user-friendly presentation of the qualitative findings. The Monitoring Matrix website: https://monitoringmatrix.net/ provides more detailed information on the methodology used, the purpose, the findings per country, the reports etc. However, it does not provide the possibility for searching through the vast information available and comparing the findings and scores between countries and across years.
The development of a separate, centralized website for the Regional Hub would allow for the collecting and sharing of all information gathered, as a way to make it more easily available for all of the Regional Hub’s partners, as well as for the wider CSO public. Such a database would provide a valuable everlasting source of support for many CSOs in their fight for protecting the civic space and achieving their missions and will promote and enable learning well beyond the partners and beneficiaries of the Regional Hub. The existing Monitoring Matrix website needs to be upgraded to be more user-friendly for visitors.
- DESCRIPTION OF THE ASSIGNMENT
Through this activity, BCSDN aims to establish an independent website dedicated to the Regional Civil Society Development Hub, and upgrade the existing Monitoring Matrix website.
The new website should be the institutional memory of the Regional Hub, where CSOs can access various resources on enabling environment, accountability, and other CSO related topics. The development of a new website for the Regional Hub will serve as a resource platform, providing information to the public about the open call for proposals, publications, generated documents, a list of former and current grantees, activities, experts, etc.
In addition to the resources ad information available for the wider public interested in the news and activities of the Regional Hub, the website shall contain one section with restricted access (requiring login) for partners directly involved in the Regional Hub governance structures and the activities’ implementation.
The Regional Hub website will be linked to the upgraded Monitoring Matrix website and shall draw/use its information, channelling summarized research findings from the Monitoring Matrix in a more effective, reader-friendly, and presentable manner.
On the other hand, the upgraded Monitoring Matrix website should present the comprehensive MM tool and research findings more visually to engage the audience and capture the visitors’ interest. In addition to the presentation of the current state of the enabling environment for civil society development in the region, visitors should be able to explore the topics and findings across the region, and able to compare a country’s scoring with other countries, or across years.
- Scope of Work
The service provider is expected to perform the following tasks:
- Development of a new website dedicated to the Regional Hub, and
- An upgrade of the current Monitoring Matrix website.
The scope of work comprises the design, development (upon validation of the design), and provision of administrative, technical, and quality control for one year after the finalization of the websites and knowledge transfer for maintenance to BCSDN staff to ensure a smooth transition in the maintenance of both websites.
- The new website for the Regional Civil Society Development Hub shall include front and back-end platforms, providing in one place:
- Summarized information from the monitoring and new developments about the civil society environment in the Western Balkan 6 countries (WB6) presented in an interactive user-friendly format (data shall be withdrawn from the upgraded MM website);
- Database of experts and available resources related to areas supported by the Hub;
- Database of supported projects and organizations through the Hub, and the resources created as part of the Hub’s activities;
- Internal database of CSOs from the WB6 that BCSDN and its members have supported or worked with;
- Internal dashboard for implementing partners with features including a calendar of events, meeting rooms, news board with notifications, database with internal documents, guidelines, and other Hub governance resources.
- The upgraded Monitoring Matrix website will present the MM tool and findings more visually and in a reader-friendly manner to engage the audience and capture the visitors’ interest. Also, it shall enable visitors to compare scoring across countries, topics and years. To this end, the following should be ensured:
- A database of the countries’ findings and scores over time developed based on the scoring methodology and specific formula underpinning it;
- Simultaneous use by several types of users with different access to enter both textual data and assign scores to over 150 indicators;
- Different filter options (by countries, years, areas, subareas and standards) for website visitors to search the full database.
The source code for the developed websites with all components shall remain the property of the contracting authority.
- A website with a resource library for the Regional Civil Society Development Hub;
- An upgraded website for the Monitoring Matrix;
- User manual on how to perform the content upload and administration for the Regional Civil Society Development Hub website;
- User manual on how to perform the content upload and administration for the upgraded Monitoring Matrix website.
- SELECTION CRITERIA
- Legal entity/ Company with a minimum 5 years of relevant working experience, i.e. capacity to design, develop and maintain databases and websites;
- At least 3 successfully accomplished projects- developed interactive user-friendly websites, including databases.
The proposals received will be evaluated according to the following criteria:
- Relevant work experience (minimum 5 years): 30
- Experience in developing websites designing/ successfully accomplished projects: 50
- Price Offer (Financial Proposal): 20.
- DURATION OF THE ASSIGNMENT
- Starting period
The tentative start date will be the beginning of June 2022.
The actual commencement of the assignment will be officially notified by the contracting authority.
- Foreseen finishing period or duration
The service provider should complete the activities and provide the deliverables listed in section 2.2 of this ToR by mid-December 2022.
The front-end and back-end proposals for the websites should be presented to the contracting authority in the first half of September 2022.
The administrative, technical, and quality support shall be provided for 1 year starting from the date of acceptance by the contracting authority of the two websites.
- HOW TO APPLY
The service provider is expected to submit both a Technical and Financial Proposal.
In order for the application to be considered complete, the applicants should submit:
- A technical proposal comprised of:
- Portfolio of previous work on websites and databases, a description of the experience and short biography;
- Reference list with prior similar engagements.
- The financial proposal should contain a budget breakup (database and websites development, domain purchasing, annual charges to retain domain name, costs for additional software and plugins, if applicable, and costs for a one-year backup period).
- Official registration document in line with the legislation of the country of the establishment of the legal entity/ company.
The applicants shall submit the required documents no later than the 27th of May 2022 (extended deadline) on the following e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject line: Website Design Regional CSDev Hub/ MM.
 Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, Montenegro, North Macedonia and Serbia