The European Institute for Cooperation and Development (IECD) is a French non-governmental organization (NGO) founded in 1988 and operating in the field of social and economic development in partnership with local institutions. IECD’s main sectors of action are vocational training and professional integration, assistance to micro and small enterprises and access to education and health for the most vulnerable. IECD has been operating In Lebanon since 1989 and opened a regional office in Beirut in 2007.


Through the Support to Micro and Small Enterprises (MSEs), IECD invests in training and support for small businesses, the main engine of growth and job creation at the local level. In 1998, the first training center was inaugurated in Cameroon, where all the training and support services for MSEs are provided. The program was then replicated in Ivory Coast, Democratic Republic of Congo, the Middle East, and South-East Asia.


The Support to Micro Enterprises program has been running in North Lebanon and accompanying very small entrepreneurs since 2010, training about 100 entrepreneurs per year on “Basic Management training”. In addition to the basic management training provided by IECD, the entrepreneurs are followed for a year after the training to assess their improvement and provide the needed support, with good impact on the evolution of entrepreneur’s practices and the development of their business. In 2020, more than 85% of the beneficiaries of the program were using the concepts acquired during the training and the management tools 6 months after the training and nearly 60% have created at least one job.


The main objectives of the project are:

  • Develop the local socio-economic fabric through a contribution to the revitalizing of the very small enterprises sector.
  • Develop the basic management skills and knowledge of small entrepreneurs by providing management training and support services tailored to their needs.  
  • Integrate further the entrepreneurial fabric by offering networking and skills building services.


This project is being implemented in the North area (Tripoli and surroundings) since 2010. However, to support the local economic fabric on a wider scale, IECD is considering extending its intervention to a new region of Lebanon.

To identify the new area of intervention, IECD is looking for a consultant to conduct a market need assessment in 2 new areas (Saida and its region, Central Beqaa) and recommend the most relevant for IECD to implement the “Support to Micro and Small Enterprises” Program.



The mission will start in March and should be finalized in June 2021.


The overall objective of the needs and market assessment consultancy is: 

  • Recommend one new area other than North region where it would be relevant for IECD to implement its support to micro-entrepreneurs’ program.   


The expert will be responsible for the following:


  1. Preparing the study and recommending the methodology of the work: 
    • Organize preparatory meetings with IECD staff.
    • Review available documents and surveys.
    • Set up the methodology approach (samples, locations, logistics, coordination, data collection and implementation plan of the study.)
    • Suggest the selection criteria to be validated with IECD.
    • Identify the key internal and external stakeholders to be involved at different stages, and opportunities to discuss and respond to emerging findings as relevant.
    • A Set up a planning including all the consultancy activities includes the field visits, data collection and analyses, recommendation, and final report.



  1. Conduct field visits in the different identified areas to answer the following questions for each area:
  • Description of the region assessed: rural or urban areas, main cities, facilities to access these cities, current economic situation and recent evolutions, types of existing activities....
  • Focus on the program target group (micro-entrepreneurs and self-employed): does the target group exist in the area? Type of activities (craftsmen, traders, services, farmers)? Profile of the entrepreneurs and self-employed (age, nationality – inclusion of refugees in the sample is required, gender, qualifications, formal or informal activity). Are there enough entrepreneurs who may be interested by IECD program to confirm the feasibility and the sustainability of the project in the area? Is there a need for support to micro-entrepreneurs? What are the needs? Do female entrepreneurs experience specific needs? Do the entrepreneurs seem receptive? Assess the needs by carrying out interviews with entrepreneurs.
  • Assess other existing initiatives in the area to support entrepreneurs: are there other actors offering similar services and training? If so, which ones (implementing entities, targeted beneficiaries, content and modalities, donors)? is there an unmet need that this project could address? Is there a complementarity of activities?
  • Assess the presence of financial service providers and business development providers including microfinance institutions, business associations, civil society organizations, etc. and the range of services they provide and their description. Assess possible cooperation with those organizations.



  1. Deliverables:
  • Inception report: The inception report will be delivered to IECD after the initial meeting with the project staff. The report should include the objectives of the research, a detailed plan of how the research will be carried out describing research methodology, proposed guiding questions for semi-structured interviews, or other approaches, and proposing the draft data collection questionnaires. The inception report should also provide a clear matrix of roles and responsibilities indicating the persons involved in the research and their roles, the key internal and external stakeholders to be involved, a detailed work plan and timeline with key milestones, meetings and expected progress and outputs. A detailed financial breakdown including the number of days and persons involved should also be included. The inception report should also summarize the preliminary findings and any preliminary hypotheses resulting from the literature review and explain the process for obtaining the participants’ consent and any necessary government permissions. A detailed work plan should be annexed to the report. The main text of the inception report should not exceed 15 pages. The inception report as well as all the suggested tools should be delivered in English.


  • Data collection tools and related materials: The final interview questions, questionnaires and other tools that will be used with the target groups should be shared by the consultant in English and Arabic prior to the data collection process after the tools have been tested and possible modifications to them.


  • Draft research report: The draft report should be delivered in a soft copy in English. References should be fully cited after all important facts and figures. The analytical reports of the findings should be presented in a qualitative format supported by quantitative charts and tables. Also, the report should include recommendation of one area for implementation.


  • Final research report: The final report will be considered final only after incorporating the feedback from IECD, and the report should be submitted in a soft copy in English.


  • Raw data:  Raw data will be delivered to IECD at the end of the research:
  • All original research instruments with their recorded field data.
  • Copies of all excel files / databases used for data analysis (English and Arabic versions, for IECD to validate the analyses).


  1. Permissions:

The consultant will be responsible for obtaining the necessary permissions to implement the research data collection at the local level.




Experience and qualifications:

  • Advanced degree in social sciences, development studies, economics, statistics, or relevant fields.
  • Significant experience in conducting research and field studies, use of participatory techniques, and monitoring and evaluation.
  • Proven track record on conducting research in the development sector (at least two similar studies).
  • Knowledge of economic empowerment, capacity building, and entrepreneurship.
  • Previous experience in working with international organizations and donors.  
  • Fluent in English and Arabic.
  • Excellent written and verbal communication especially analytical skills in English.



Recommended skills and competencies:

  • Fluency in Arabic and English is required
  • Strong analytical skills and capacities.
  • Strong information technologies skills
  • Can navigate and produce results within a complex and challenging environment.
  • Demonstrate a strong work ethic and professional integrity.

How to apply

Required documents for applying:

Interested consultants and agencies are invited to submit their proposal in English based on the TOR, the proposal should include:

  • The Technical offer including proposed methodology to be adopted in the research and proposed timeline of research activities, including the expected level of effort and number of working days in a tabular form.
  • Offeror’s letter to IECD confirming interest and availability for the individual contractor (IC) assignment.
  • Profile of the organization (in the case of an institution) including experience with similar research in the past.
  • Full list of the team that will implement the study, with respective roles and CVs of the lead members of the research team. 
  • A detailed financial offer that includes all fees or expenditures in a table, the financial offer should include the payment methods and all the needed information for payments.
  • A copy of one similar research report written by the consultant to validate the quality of analysis and presentation of findings.
  • List of references includes information about organization and people who worked with before.

The Consultant will be working directly with “Support to entrepreneurship” project manager and program manager and with the trainers if needed.

IECD will provide the Consultant with documentation regarding the current activities carried out by the NGO, especially in North Lebanon, as far as MSE and entrepreneurship support is concerned, and will mention the available budget and the target number of beneficiaries to help the Consultant design the survey and elaborate relevant recommendations.

The donors will be involved in the selection of the service provider and the review of the deliverables (Inception report, Data collection tools and related materials, Draft research report, Final research report)

Job Location: Lebanon.

Contract Type: Consultancy

Deadline for application submission: 10th of March 2021.

Starting date: 5 days after receiving a confirmation email from IECD, and an invitation to a meeting with IECD team, the consultant should send the inception report max 10 working days after the meeting.

Date end of assignment: June 2021

Contact Information: [email protected] 

Please add the job title to the email subject. applications without the job title will be discarded. 

Thursday, 11. Mar 2021
Type of Call
Call for Consultancies
Intervention Sector(s):
Labor & Livelihoods
Remuneration range:
> 6000 (USD)
Duration of Contract:
3 months