Adam Smith International (Pakistan)

Technical Writer - Online Learning Portal Course (SEED)

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Last update: Sep 26, 2023 Last update: Sep 26, 2023


Deadline: Oct 10, 2023 Deadline for applications has passed
Location: Pakistan Pakistan
Job type:Contract, up to 4 months
Work experience: <1 year
Date posted:Sep 26, 2023


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Technical Writer - Online Learning Portal Course (SEED)

Job Location: Remote (with regular travel to Peshawar)
Country: Pakistan
Job Type: Consultant
Sustainable Energy and Economic Development (SEED)

Terms of Reference 

TOR Name: Online Learning Portal Course – Planning Cycle, From PC1 to PC5 

SEED Output: Output 2 

Informs Log-frame indicator#:2.1PIM practices developed/improved and embedded 

Duration: 3 months between September– December 2023
Location: Remote (with regular travel to Peshawar for stakeholder consultation) 
How to apply: Submit your CV (mandatory) and cover letter (optional) at the following address:

Programme Background 

Sustainable Energy and Economic Development (SEED) is a £37.5 million programme funded by UK’s Foreign Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO). It aims to support provincial economic development and sustainable energy in Pakistan.  SEED will support the province of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) to plan and finance the infrastructure and investment it needs for growth, jobs, and prosperity. The programme also seeks to address Pakistan’s energy crisis by providing innovative financial solutions for the adoption of sustainable energy practices. Within SEED, Adam Smith International (ASI) has been contracted to deliver the first component - Improved Economic and Urban Planning in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, with a budget of £15 million. The intended outcome of the programme will be public and private investments generating greater economic, social, and environmental returns.  


SEED continues to collaborate with the Government of KP (GoKP) to enhance the effectiveness of public investment through improved project selection, appraisal, and monitoring processes. In this regard, SEED is dedicated to building the capacities of public sector officials in targeted areas of investment management. To achieve this, an online learning management system (LMS) has been developed and integrated into the official systems of the planning & development (P&D) department. This LMS hosts an array of specialized and cross-cutting training modules, accessible to designated government officials. The LMS can be accessed at: 

With an ongoing commitment to capacity building, we aim to develop a new comprehensive course on the Planning Cycle in Pakistan (PC1 to PC5). This online course seeks to provide in-depth training on the planning processes within each distinct cycle. By doing so, the course intends to empower policy makers, decision makers, and public sector officers to navigate the complexities of planning and development effectively within their roles and departments. 

Assignment Objectives: 

The primary objective of this assignment is to develop a robust online learning module on the Planning Cycle in Pakistan (PC1 to PC5) that caters specifically to policy makers, decision makers, and public sector officers. This module will not only introduce the participants to the foundational concepts and definitions of each planning cycle but will also emphasize the crucial role that understanding these processes plays in informed decision making. The course content will go beyond basic knowledge, delving into best practices and pitfalls to avoid in each planning cycle. 


The technical writer will play a pivotal role in shaping comprehensive instructional content for the online course modules. Responsibilities include: 

  • Conducting an in-depth analysis of each planning cycle (PC1 to PC5) in Pakistan and KP, identifying key components, stages, and methodologies. 
  • Collaborating closely with subject matter experts and professionals in the planning & development sector to gather pertinent insights, case studies, and resources. 
  • Creating engaging instructional content that is tailored to the needs of policy makers, decision makers, and public sector officers, showcasing the importance of robust planning process and decision making. 
  • Developing interactive learning materials that empower learners to apply planning best practices and make informed choices. 
  • Ensuring the course content is accessible, user-friendly, and optimized for effective online learning experiences. 
  • Incorporating feedback and revisions from the project team to refine and finalize the course content. 
  • Course Content  

1. Introduction to Planning Cycles: 

  • Overview of the five planning cycles in Pakistan (PC1 to PC5). 
  • Understanding the significance of each cycle in the development process. 

2. PC1 to PC5: Fundamentals: 

  • In-depth exploration of the scope, and outcomes of each planning cycle. 
  • Role of each cycle in driving development and achieving goals. 

3. Aligning Planning Cycles with Development Goals: 

  • Analyzing how each planning cycle contributes to the realization of broader development objectives. 
  • Case studies showcasing successful integration of planning cycles in policy formulation. 

4. Best Practices for PC1 to PC5 Formulation: 

  • Identifying key principles for effective planning cycle formulation. 
  • Case studies illustrating successful implementation of best practices. 

5. The Role of Stakeholders and Collaboration: 

  • Understanding stakeholder engagement strategies in each planning cycle. 
  • Emphasizing collaborative approaches for better policy outcomes. 

8. Challenges and Opportunities Across Planning Cycles: 

  • Identifying common challenges and potential opportunities in each planning cycle. 
  • Strategies for overcoming challenges and leveraging opportunities. 

9. Application and Integration of Planning Cycles: 

  • Case studies demonstrating the successful integration of planning cycles in policy and project implementation. 
  • Interactive exercises to apply knowledge in real-world scenarios. 

Expected Outcomes and Deliverables 

The selected consultant is expected to complete the following deliverables within the approved timelines.  

Deliverable 1- September 2023: Submission of a comprehensive technical brief covering the scope under the course content (see section above)that introduces policy makers, decision makers, and public sector officers to the planning cycles in Pakistan (PC1 to PC5). The content should build a strong argument supporting the significance of informed planning and decision making. –(Max 12 working days) 

Deliverable 2- October 2023: Assessment Questions, at least 60 – (Max 2 working days) 

Deliverable3- December 2023: Assisting Ed-tech Expert in developing knowledge product and presentation to GoKP officials and stakeholders – (Max 4 working days) 

The indicative level of effort required against the aforementioned deliverables is 18 working days which may be extended by mutual agreement if required. 


The consultant(s) shall report to SEED Output Lead.The Output Lead will providetheir formal sign-off on each ofthe outputs outlined above before payment can be disbursed against deliverables.  

Experience and skills 

  • Advanced degree in the field of Economic, public policy, development policy or other relevant field.  
  • Advance knowledge of infrastructure, public investment management tools, project planning and Institutional development 
  • Experience in instructional design or developing online courses on Infrastructure, planning, PIM tools etc. 
  • Excellent writing and editing skills, with a strong command of the English language. 
  • Strong development focused track record, analytical ability, organizational, and communication skills. Experience with multilateral development organisations is strongly preferred.  
  • Strong project development and stakeholder management skills. 

Values & Obligations: 

All members of the SEED team are expected to adhere to the following values and obligations: 

  • At all times working collaboratively and openly with other members of the SEED team, proactively providing guidance, advice and sharing experiences in order to solve problems, overcome challenges and manage risks together. 
  • Freely and openly sharing information gained from government counterparts, FCDO or other international projects with other members of the team. 
  • Respecting the confidentiality of the SEED team’s discussions, assessments, decisions and plans or agreements with FCDO; sharing information with external parties only when authorised to do so by the Team Leader or Deputy Team Leader. 
  • Adhering to decisions taken by the programme’s leadership and taking collective responsibility for implementing those decisions and communicating them to counterparts or other external parties. 
  • Ensuring they have an accurate understanding of policies and decisions made by FCDO that relate to SEED and respecting and adhering to those policies. 
  • Complying with the channels set out by ASI for all communications with FCDO through the SEED leadership structure. 
  • Careful coordination with other team members of communications and meetings with government counterparts to ensure coherence of technical advice and as efficient use of counterparts’ time as possible. 
  • Constant monitoring of risks to the delivery of SEED activities and achievement of objectives, as well as the reputation of SEED and FCDO, and swift referral of those risks to the Team Leader and Deputy Team Leader. 
  • Consultants are obliged to look out for, and report human rights abuses known and rumoured to have taken place connected with or undertaken by our counterparts. In the event that consultants gain information about any such abuses they should report the matter in line with the procedure contained in the SEED Human Rights Assessment and Framework document. 
  • Professional coordination with other internationally funded programmes supporting SEED, including briefing those programmes when requested by the Team Leader or Deputy Team Leader. 
  • Contributing constructively to team meetings, development of workplans, risk assessment, progress reviews and report writing, as well as external evaluations by FCDO or its independent evaluation advisers. 
  • Complying with SEED’s media policy of referring all inquiries from the media to the Team Leader and Deputy Leader before responding in any way to those inquiries. 
  • Minuting all meetings with officials from FCDO and sharing those minutes with the Team Leader and Deputy Team Leader at the earliest opportunity. 
  • Maximising the impact of the programme’s limited resources by ensuring expenditure on travel, accommodation or other costs is as efficient as possible. 
  • Complying with financial procedures designed to protect the financial integrity of the programme and notifying the Deputy Team Leader and Project Managers of any incidents that threaten that integrity. 
  • Complying with ASI’s Duty of Care and security procedures designed to ensure safety of personnel and notifying the Deputy Team Leader and Project Managers of any incidence that threaten the security of personnel or assets of the programme. 

Compliance with Working Policies 

Consultant(s)/Subcontractor(s) shall observe the highest ethical standards during the performance of Services related to this assignment and must comply and apply business practices that follow the Adam Smith International’s Code of Conduct available at: 
Consultant(s)/Subcontractor(s) shall apply zero tolerance to terrorism or the financing of terrorism; bribery or corruption of any kind; human trafficking or modern slavery; safeguarding or child protection breaches, money laundering, fraud, or tax evasion; and discrimination. They shall use reasonable endeavours to give effect to any reasonable request from Adam Smith International to adjust working practices for this purpose or otherwise to promote positive social or environmental impact. 

Satisfactory Performance 

Consultant(s) and subcontractors shall perform all obligations under the contract with necessary skill, diligence, efficiency, and economy to satisfy acceptable professional standards and in accordance with Good Industry Practice and payments are subject to the satisfaction of ASI in relation to the performance by the Consultant(s)/Subcontractors of obligations under this contract. 
If for any reason ASI is dissatisfied that the Consultant(s)/Subcontractor(s) is not or has not been carrying out their duties, obligations and responsibilities under this contract, an appropriate sum may be withheld from any payment otherwise due to the consultant(s)/subcontractor(s). In such event, ASI shall identify the element(s) of the Services with which it is dissatisfied together with the reasons for such dissatisfaction in coordination with the SEED technical team. Any payment by ASI to the contractor/subcontractor of the amount outstanding will be made upon remedy of any unsatisfactory work or resolution of outstanding queries. 
Should ASI determine after paying for a particular part of the Services that this has not been completed satisfactorily, ASI may recover, or withhold from further payments, an amount not exceeding that previously charged for that part of the Service until the unsatisfactory part of the service is remedied to its satisfaction. 


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