Serbia has received a loan from the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (Bank) to improve the competitiveness and employment toward the cost of the Competitiveness and Jobs Project (Project) and intends to apply part of the proceeds to payments for individual consultancy services under this Project.
Public Policy Secretariat of the Republic of Serbia (PPS) needs to engage ONE R&D Sector Advisor.
The main goal of the Project is to improve the efficiency and coordination of select public programs to mitigate the constraints for competitiveness and job creation, including investment and export promotion, innovation, active labour market programs, and employment mediation. The Project involves three ministries— the Ministry of Economy (MoE) (plus its development agencies), Ministry of Education, Science and Technological Development (MoESTD), and Ministry of Labor, Employment, Veteran and Social Affairs (MoLEVSA) and the Public Policy Secretariat (PPS) in the implementation and coordination role. Under Project framework, the three Ministries and participating agencies, with leadership and support from the PPS, are responsible to set performance targets on competitiveness and jobs, monitor and evaluate progress, conduct analysis, and contribute to policy development in the Republic of Serbia. The Project is expected to lead to better designed and coordinated policies, since it is anticipated that, through the Project implementation, they will become part of a clear, strategic framework with a robust monitoring and evaluation (M&E) system. The Public Policy Secretariat is responsible, in close cooperation with the institutions participating in the Project, for coordinating the Project implementation including gathering and processing of results of the monitoring, reporting, fiduciary functions and safeguard procedures. The Project Implementation Unit (PIU) is established in the Public Policy Secretariat as a technical coordination unit of the Project.
The Competitiveness and Jobs Project is structured in two interconnected parts:
- Part A – includes a results-based financing modality for the results achieved in three thematic components:
A.1. Investment and Export Promotion
- Part B – includes technical support in project management and implementation, including the procurement of goods, consulting/non-consultant services, training and operating costs.
The MoESTD is responsible for achieving results for Component A.2. Innovation. This component supports programs for innovation through:
- Supporting operations of the Innovation Fund and its Grants Programs;
- Supporting Technology Transfer Facility service lines at the Innovation Fund; and
- Strategic planning and institutional reform of the public research and development sector.
Objective of the Assignment
The Government of the Republic of Serbia, supported by the World Bank and the European Union Delegation to the Republic of Serbia (EUD), has committed and initiated significant reforms of the country’s research and innovation system. The reforms aim to reduce challenges recognized in the Research for Innovation Strategy 2016-2020. The Strategy also envisions a series of measures to boost innovative entrepreneurship in the country, including through improved access to financing and knowledge necessary for enterprise founding and growth. This work builds on the decade-long cooperation between the Government, the World Bank and the EU on improving the R&D sector in Serbia. The Competitiveness and Jobs Project has provided continuity in financial support for enterprise innovation and facilitates technology transfer and commercialization piloted by the Innovation Fund (IF), and has supported design of public research sector reforms including the abovementioned Strategy.
A key element of the reforms is changing the model of financing R&D activities in the country, including a transition to competitive financing through the introduction of a new funding instrument, the Science Fund of Serbia. To this end, a new Law on the Science Fund was adopted by Parliament in December 2018. In addition, a Law on Science and Research was recently adopted by Parliament. This Law defines all the actors in the national research system as well as institutional funding of public research organisations. Further steps in the reform of the R&D sector include the operationalisation of the new Law on Science and Research through by-laws which will determine the details of institutional funding, the independent assessment of R&D Institutes (RDIs) and their reforms.
To continue the work that is currently supported by the Project and to build on the momentum of reforms, the Government has requested a World Bank loan which is now in preparation, “Serbia Accelerating Innovation and Growth Entrepreneurship” (SAIGE). The SAIGE project will include support to the Serbian Science Fund, reform of R&D Institutes (RDIs), a Diaspora Facility, and establishment of an Enterprise Acceleration Facility (at the Innovation Fund).
The MoESTD now needs the services of an International individual consultant (R&D Sector Advisor, hereinafter: The Advisor). The objective of this assignment is to assist/advise the MoESTD in defining the details of the R&D Sector reform process including design of institutional performance-based funding for RDIs, RDIs assessments, design of RDI transformation plans, monitoring, regulatory and policy changes, etc.
Scope of work
The Advisor will provide advice and guidance to MoESTD management and staff on:
- The national strategic framework for R&D and innovation (including the national R&D and Innovation Strategy and the Smart Specialisation Strategy);
- The legal framework for R&D and innovation (including revisions to the Law on the Science Fund) and relevant by-laws (including those governing institutional financing of RDIs);
- Terms of Reference (and participate in the selection) of various experts and consulting firms;
- Independent assessment of RDIs;
- Sequencing, selection and design of RDI reforms;
- Review of RDI transformation plans;
- Visibility and promotional events and related activities;
- Liaising with relevant national and international organizations and donors, as well as with relevant stakeholders including RDIs, private sector companies and associations, the Science Fund, the Innovation Fund and others.
Experience and Qualifications
The Candidates will be evaluated with following criteria:
Relevant Master’s Degree (e.g. Science, Technology, Engineering, or Economics) – Doctorate degree is desirable;
Excellent leadership skills;
At least 10 years of international experience in research and innovation policy design and implementation, research funding, strategy and planning, monitoring and evaluation – proven record;
Experience in establishment and/or management or reform of R&D institutes;
Experience in transition economies (South-East Europe is preferable);
Previous experience with World Bank/other international organizations – funded programs is desired.
Highly effective writing and oral communication skills for varied audiences, including policy makers;
Excellent spoken and written English language skills.
Timing and Duration
The expected time effort is approximately 50 man-days in the period of 12 months with a possibility of extension. The Advisor will be required to travel to Serbia/Belgrade a minimum 3 times during the course of the assignment. The assignment is expected to start in September 2019.
The Project Implementation Unit (PIU) within the Public Policy Secretariat of the Republic of Serbia will administer the Contract with the selected Consultant. The Pubic Policy Secretariat now invites eligible individual consultants to indicate their interest in providing the services.
The individual consultants will be selected in accordance with the procedures set out in the World Bank’s Guidelines: Selection and Employment of Consultants under IBRD Loans and IDA Credits & Grants by World Bank Borrowers January 2011 Revised July 2014.
Interested and eligible individual consultants for this position should send Expression of Interest, together with information on relevant experience and CV in English, by e-mail (with the exact title of the position in the “Subject” of the e-mail) to the contact information listed below.
Expressions of interest must be delivered by September 11, 2019, 15:00h local time.
Project Implementation Unit
Public Policy Secretariat
10 Vlajkoviceva St
Republic of Serbia
Tel: +381 11 333 41 19