Researcher for Survey on Gender Responsive Family Policies with Focus on Youth Perspective

3 jul


Job Description
Purpose of consultancy:

In Eastern Europe, including the Western Balkans, persistent gender inequalities and discrimination continue to affect family dynamics and society as a whole. These harmful norms and practices discriminate against women and girls, resulting in low female employment rates across the region. The Western Balkans, in particular, witness significant gender disparities in labour force participation, pay, and the burden of unpaid care work.

To address these policy gaps, the United Nations Population Funds (UNFPA) in Eastern Europe and Central Asia intends to implement the second phase of the Expanding Choices project in Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, North Macedonia, and Serbia. This project aims to have a substantial impact by enabling women to fully participate in the labour market and make informed decisions on their family and work life, leading to more gender-responsive and sustainable development. The desired outcome of the project is to promote GRFP in the private sector through legislative and normative frameworks, creating inclusive labor conditions and opportunities. This objective aligns with the priorities outlined in the Austrian Development Cooperation's Regional Strategy for the Western Balkans Region, which emphasises sustainable economic development and improved conditions in the labor market for the most vulnerable populations. By addressing challenges such as unpaid care work and maternalistic policies, the project aims to establish family-friendly policies that support caregivers, redistribute unpaid care work, and promote work-life balance. Furthermore, the project supports governance and the rule of law by engaging with duty bearers and advocating for business-friendly public services and equal opportunities. The intervention will pursue three key outputs: 1) enhancing the capacity of governments to design and monitor GRFP, 2) encouraging private sector actors to implement such policies, 3) fostering regional collaboration and knowledge sharing on GRFP and their connection to gender equality and economic development.

For this purpose, UNFPA BiH intends to engage junior researcher to contribute to  conducting a survey on “Workplaces tailored to the needs of future families’ in Bosnia and Herzegovina”. The survey includes analysis of Gender Responsive Family Policies (GRFP), regulations and HR practices, respectively in Federation of BiH and Republika Srpska. This survey aims to provide a comprehensive overview  of the existing environment in the labour market for women and young people, to uncover challenges,obstacles  and possibilities, and ultimately contribute to the development of workplaces that effectively support the needs of Gen Z and future families in the country. Furthermore, the survey will support the development of policy scenarios with particular focus  on the linkage between GRFP and Youth Migration from BiH, considering how young people could benefit from GRFP to ensure demographic resilience and encourage their decision to remain in the country. The consultant will be a part of a working group that consists of three consultants and will work under overall supervision of the lead researcher.

Scope of work:

Under the coordination of the lead researcher, consultant is expected to contribute to support the lead researcher in data collection and analysis as well as delivery of the following tasks/activities:

TASK 1: Development  of methodology
The Consultant is expected to contribute to development of a detailed methodology.
This should include:

  • A detailed work plan for data collection and analysis, including time frame, clear division of tasks, and expected outcomes.
  • A survey methodology for quantitative data collection
  • Guideline  for semi structured interview  for for focus group discussions
  • A protocol for recruitment of participants (6-8 participants), including sampling methodology, selection criteria for participants, criteria to determine qualitative sample size, and related tools and documents, recruitment questionnaire invitations, consent forms, etc).

TASK 2:  Conducting Desk review of existing data, materials and documents related to gender responsive family policies and work-life balance with focus on perspective and needs of  young people 

The consultant will contribute to conducting a desk review  of all available data on GRPF and HR practices and regulations. The review should provide insight into workplace conditions for Gen Z and families in the country and should contribute to creating recommendations for development of workplaces that effectively  support the needs of Gen Z and future families in the country. The consultant should contribute to exploration of the following data sources:

  • Official statistics
  • Peer-reviewed research studies
  • Literature, including reports and publications by CSOs, UN and government institutions.
  • Policy and legislation that applies to GRPF and young people , inclusive of institutional and governmental programmes and support provided to the target group of this consultancy. This may include programmes for enabling first employment for young people, maternity leave support programmes, tax benefits, etc.
  • News articles
  • Other documents as relevant

The desk review should include a review of the public discourse about related terms such as work life balance, female leadership, Gen Z aspirations and mindset.

TASK 3: Conducting  the survey and field  research 

The consultant will contribute to the working group throughout the process of conducting the field research. Field research should consist of:

  • An online survey, inclusive of but not limited to  2 public universities, employees of 5 Champions companies born after 1997
  • Two focus groups  with Gen Z representatives from Sarajevo and Banjaluka, aligned to previously developed and agreed methodology.
  • This task should be delivered in close cooperation with UNFPA CO where UNFPA will  provide logistics needed for focus groups.

TASK 4: Data processing and analysis 

The Consultant will contribute to analysis of the data collected through qualitative research, according to the agreed methodology. This analysis will be the basis for the for the preparation of the final report on “Workplaces tailored to future families’ needs in Bosnia and Herzegovina

TASK 5: Preparation of the final report with recommendations and presentation

The consultant will contribute and support delivering of the final research report. The report should 1) clarify  existing concepts related to gender responsive  workplaces, Gen Z aspirations and needs, work life balance, 2) identify perceived problems and obstacles for inclusion into labour market and dignified work conditions and 3) provide recommendations for  actionable policies and advocacy in BIH, targeting both private and public sector.
The consultant will support incorporating relevant comments by UNFPA. As a part of the working group, the consultant will contribute to presentations of the report to the main stakeholders in agreement with UNFPA CO.

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