Request for Proposals: Develop Sanctions Management Framework for One CGIAR

  • Location:
  • Salary:
    negotiable / YEAR
  • Job type:
  • Posted:
    2 months ago
  • Category:
  • Deadline:


1. Objective:

CGIAR seeks a firm to support the development of a fit-for-purpose sanctions compliance program to effectively mitigate the risk related to economic, political, and trade sanctions for CGIAR.


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CGIAR is a global research partnership whose mission is to create a world with sustainable and resilient food, land, and water systems that deliver diverse, healthy, safe, sufficient, and affordable diets and ensure improved livelihoods and greater social equality within planetary and regional environmental boundaries. Our research is carried out in close collaboration with hundreds of partners, including national and regional research institutes, civil society organizations, academia, development organizations, and the private sector.

One CGIAR is a dynamic reformulation of CGIAR’s partnerships, knowledge, assets, and global presence, aiming for greater integration and impact in the face of the interdependent challenges facing today’s world and the need to deliver on the Sustainable Development Goals by 2030.

The One CGIAR transition is based on the premise that CGIAR’s people, together with partners, can have more impact when brought together under fewer institutional boundaries and supported by empowered management, clear governance, and an integrated operational structure.

CGIAR seeks to enhance its efficiency in its approach to sanction compliance across multiple jurisdictions. Consequently, we are searching for a consultant (hereinafter the Firm) who can support the development of a fit-for-purpose sanctions compliance program to effectively mitigate the risk related to economic, political, and trade sanctions for One CGIAR, the CGIAR System Organization, and a deep dive into 3 of its research entities, hereafter referred to as “Identified Centers”:

  1. WorldFish, headquartered in Penang Malaysia
  2. International Water Management Institute (IWMI) headquartered in Colombo, Sri Lanka,
  3. International Rice Research Institute (IRRI), headquartered in Los Banos, Philippines

Please refer to Annex 2 for a detailed overview of CGIAR.

Scope of Work

The work is expected to be completed in two Phases as follows:

Phase 1

Clarify the impact of international regulatory requirements and sanctions restrictions across all Centers in the CGIAR network, the CGIAR System Organization, and the Identified Centers specifically. Provide resources to modernize the compliance program.

  1. Conduct a comprehensive overview of the CGIAR System, including the CGIAR System Organization, ICARDA and the Identified Centers. This overview should encompass a thorough understanding of their operational domains, including current sanctions compliance programs, software, and processes derived from publicly available data, interviews, or any other suggested methodologies.
  2. Undertake a detailed analysis of the effects that international regulatory mandates and sanctions may exert on the CGIAR System Organization, and the Identified Centers. This analysis should focus on identifying and interpreting the nuances of how these external legal frameworks interact with and impact the operations and strategies of these entities.
    Following these initial steps, the Firm is expected to:
  3. Compile a concise yet comprehensive report, which outlines the international trade regulations and sanctions laws applicable to the CGIAR System, including the CGIAR System Organization and the specified centers (WorldFish, IWMI, and IRRI), taking into account their various privileges and immunities that exist in various national jurisdictions. This report should highlight the implications of these laws and pinpoint potential risk areas stemming from the regulatory overview conducted previously.
  4. Develop a section within the report dedicated to offering actionable insights and practical guidance. This section should tailor its resources and advice specifically to the CGIAR System Organization and the identified centers, aiding them in navigating their regulatory landscape efficiently and ensuring compliance with applicable laws. e
  5. Develop and supply customized, cohesive templates or preliminary versions of essential documents pertinent to international trade and sanctions compliance. This should include, but not be limited to, detailed procedures for escalating identified risks, as well as a compendium of support resources specifically designed for the CGIAR System Organization and the Identified Centers.
  6. Construct a detailed work plan that outlines the steps necessary for implementing the strategies and recommendations provided in the report. This plan should encompass the integration of the suggested policies, procedures, and resources, ensuring ongoing adherence to applicable international regulatory standards and sanctions laws.
  7. Offer specialized guidance aimed at bolstering the efficacy of the Regulatory Compliance Points of Contact within CGIAR, the CGIAR System Organization, and the Identified Centers. This guidance should focus on improving the management of matters related to international trade and sanctions, encompassing the handling of inquiries, the protocol for reporting, and the strategies for both internal and external communications, where necessary.

By following these directives, the Firm will ensure that the CGIAR System Organization and the Identified Centers are not only equipped with robust compliance frameworks but also prepared to effectively manage and communicate regarding international trade and sanctions-related maters.

Phase 2

Provide international trade and sanctions compliance training tailored for CGIAR, the CGIAR System Organization, and the Identified Centers.

  1. Training for Select Executive Team Members (as necessary): The Firm is tasked with creating and delivering training sessions tailored for the executive team members whose roles necessitate an understanding of sanctions compliance for effective performance and decision-making. These training sessions can be conducted either in person or online. Support materials for the training should be provided to the participants at least one week in advance. The content of the training should include, but not be limited to, comprehensive summaries of the policies, identification of key risk areas, recommendations for mitigation strategies, and practical, real-world examples. Additionally, a designated time should be allocated for a question-and-answer segment to address any queries from the attendees. To ensure wider accessibility and future reference, these training sessions, including the Q&A segment, should be recorded. The training session is anticipated to last approximately 1 to 2 hours.
  2. Subject Matter Expert Level: Provide tailored training programs to the System Organization, ICARDA and Identified Centers subject matter experts to ensure they have the skills and expertise to perform their jobs and know where to find additional resources. The training session is anticipated to last 4 hours or half a day.
  3. Optional Additional Service: General Staff Awareness Training Program: As a potential add- on, subject to our evaluation of both the cost and the proposed structure of this deliverable, the Firm may be asked to create a general awareness training program designed for all CGIAR staff members with a recordkeeping system tailored to CGIAR’s risk profile. Training programs should include e-learning, self-access, and on-demand, applicable to all personnel, and include a link to policies/procedures and resources for additional information and/or subject matter experts. The Firm is required to provide a detailed cost breakdown for this particular service, enabling us to make an informed decision on whether to include it in the scope of work.

1. Deliverables

The deliverables below must align with the details described in the scope of work (item (1) of this document):

Phase 1 Deliverables

  1. Detailed brief on the applicable international trade regulations and sanctions laws and/or impact to CGIAR, CGIAR System Organization and the identified centers specifically to senior leadership identified by CGIAR SO and the identified centers and identified subject mater experts (within 1 month from start).
  2. Tailored Policies, Procedures, Resources: Develop writen policies, procedures and processes related to applicable international regulations and sanctions compliance that are consistent and integrated. Ensure policies can be easily integrated into current sanctions compliance programs, software and processes (within 2 months from start).
    1. CGIAR Sanctions Compliance Framework (Policy/ies), to be approved at System Board/Council level (Coordinated by CGIAR SO)
    2. Scope (above) specified policies for the CGIAR SO and Identified Centers: WorldFish, IWMI, and IRRI.
    3. CGIAR SO, WorldFish, IWMI, and IRRI procedures to support compliance with the above-referenced policies.
    4. Recommend clear procedures and processes to identify, mitigate and escalate sanctions risks.
    5. Implementation Workplan for roll out of tailored Policies, Procedures, Resources for the CGIAR SO and identified centers.

Phase 2: Training Deliverables

In-person or online training with support materials provided a week in advance with opportunities to answer questions and be recorded. (within 3 months from start)

  1. Executive Level: tailored training programs provided to CGIAR and each of the identified centers (3).
  2. Subject Mater Expert Level: training as described above and introduction to tailored international Trade and Sanctions Compliance program policies, procedures as described above
  3. Optional Additional Service: General Awareness training for all staff of the identified entities, with a recordkeeping system tailored to CGIAR’s risk profile. Training program should include e-learning, self-access resources that are available to all applicable personnel on demand. The Firm is required to provide a detailed cost breakdown for this particular service, enabling us to make an informed decision on whether to include it in the final award.
  4. The Firm is required to develop a comprehensive survey to gauge trainee satisfaction and gather feedback, which will be administered upon the conclusion of each training session. The design of this survey, including its content and the methodology employed, must be submited for review and receive approval from the designated CGIAR point of contact prior to its implementation. This survey will serve as a critical tool for measuring the effectiveness of the training and for identifying areas for improvement.

2. Qualifications and Experience

  1. Expertise in Sanctions Regulations: The Firm should possess extensive knowledge and a comprehensive understanding of international, regional, and national sanctions regulations. This includes an in-depth familiarity with economic, political, and trade sanctions imposed by various governments and international organizations. A thorough understanding of major sanctions regimes, including those enforced by the United Nations, European Union, United Kingdom, United States, and other key jurisdictions that use sanctions regimes, is essential.
  2. Multinational NGO Advisory Experience (Critical for CGIAR): The Firm must have substantial experience in advising multinational organizations, particularly non- governmental organizations (NGOs), on practical aspects of sanctions compliance. This experience is particularly vital for addressing the unique needs of CGIAR.
  3. Industry-Specific Experience: Demonstrable experience in working with complex, multijurisdictional organizations is required. Familiarity with the specific challenges, operations, and dynamics of research centers will be considered an asset, as it will enable the Firm to more effectively tailor sanctions compliance solutions to the unique environment of these centers.
  4. Risk Assessment and Due Diligence Expertise: The Firm should have a proven track record of conducting comprehensive risk assessments and thorough due diligence processes in the context of sanctions compliance. This includes the ability to identify potential sanctions risks, accurately evaluate the level of risk exposure, and develop and recommend effective risk mitigation strategies.

3. Timeline

The Timeline below serves as a guide to CGIAR’s current vision and goals. Bidders can propose adjusted timelines reflecting their capabilities and value-adding approach for CGIAR and Identified Centers’ consideration. The final timeline will be established as part of the final negotiations with the awardee.

Action / Deliverable Due from contract Due from contract start date
Become familiar with CGIAR, CGIAR SO and Identified Entities and set up interviews Within 1 week
Schedule Executive Level tailored training programs for CGIAR SO and each of the identified centers (2-4 trainings). Within 2 weeks
Interview Identified Centers subject matter experts Within 2 weeks
Schedule Subject Matter Expert Trainings Within 3 weeks
Provide a draft detailed brief on the international trade regulations and sanctions implications and/or impact to CGIAR, CGIAR System Organization (1 brief) Within 4 weeks
Provide a draft detailed brief on the international trade regulations and sanctions implications and/or impact to each of the identified centers. (3 briefs) Same as above
Phase 1.A DELIVERABLE: Provide a final detailed brief on the international trade regulations and sanctions implications and/or impact to CGIAR, CGIAR System Organization (1 brief) Within 6 weeks
Phase 1.A DELIVERABLE: Provide a final detailed brief on the implications of international trade regulations and sanctions and/or impact to each of the identified centers. (3 briefs) Within 8 weeks
Provide draft tailored Sanctions Compliance Framework for CGIAR (Policy/Policies) Within 9 weeks
Phase 1.B DELIVERABLE: Provide Final Tailored Sanctions Compliance Framework (Policy/Policies) for CGIAR Within 11-12 weeks
Phase 1.B DELIVERABLE: Provide tailored policies, procedures, resources and implementation workplan for the CGIAR SO and Identified Centers: WorldFish, IWMI, and IRRI. Within 11-12 weeks
Provide training program resources and presentations including feedback Survey form referred in 2.F at least 3 weeks in advance of any scheduled training for CGIAR review and feedback. 3 weeks prior to scheduled trainings
Final training program resources and presentations must be provided 2 weeks prior to scheduled trainings 2 weeks prior to scheduled trainings
Phase 2.C DELIVERABLE: Provide Executive Level: tailored training programs for CGIAR SO and each of the identified centers (3). As scheduled
Phase 2.D DELIVERABLE: Provide Subject Matter Expert-Level: training as described above and introduction to tailored international Trade and Sanctions Compliance program policies, procedures as described above. As scheduled


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Please note that Deliverable Phase 2.E is not included in the above table as it is an optional additional service that may or may not be part of the final award.

4. Performance Measurement and Review:

In this section of the Request for Proposal (RFP), we delineate the framework for performance measurement and review for the prospective firm. It is imperative that prospective Firms meticulously review the outlined performance structure and KPIs, as adherence to these will be mandatory in the execution of the project.

4.1. Key Performance Indicators (KPIs)

  • Knowledge of Compliance with Regulatory Requirements: The Firm’s work will be assessed based on their knowledge of applicable laws, tailored training programs and knowledge of screening tools.
  • Effectiveness of risk assessments; Ability to identify potential sanctions risks and will be measured by the Firm’s risk assessment methodologies, identification of high-risk areas and the quality of mitigation strategies recommended.
  • Timeliness: The Firm will be evaluated on their ability to meet deadlines and milestones as outlined in the final agreed upon timeline.
  • Client Satisfaction: Feedback from project stakeholders and team members regarding the Firm’s professionalism and effectiveness, including trainee satisfaction survey results.
  • Adherence to budget: The Firm’s ability to stay within the allocated budget for the project.

4.2. Performance Evaluation and Review

Performance evaluation is a fundamental aspect of ensuring this project’s success and timely completion. The outlined Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) will serve as the backbone for this continuous evaluation process, ensuring the Firm’s alignment with the project’s goals and expectations. The comprehensive and structured performance evaluation process, built on stakeholder feedback, project progress reports, and phase-specific reviews, will ensure the constant alignment of the Firm’s performance with the project’s objectives.

Evaluation Methodology:

Stakeholder Feedback: The Firm’s performance will be subject to evaluation by pertinent project stakeholders. Their insights and perspectives will offer a comprehensive view of the Firm’s adherence to the defined KPIs, contributing to a well-rounded assessment.

Project Progress Reports: Regular project progress reports will be an essential tool for assessing the KPIs. These reports should detail the Firm’s accomplishments, challenges, and adherence to the project schedule and budget.

Phase-Specific Reviews: A dedicated review session will be conducted at the conclusion of each project phase. These sessions will assess the Firm’s performance against each KPI, offering a structured opportunity for feedback and improvement.

Review Process:

After each project phase is completed, a review meeting will be conducted with the Firm. During these meetings, the project team and stakeholders will provide feedback on the Firm’s performance regarding each KPI.

All feedback and assessments provided during the review meetings will be formally documented. This documentation will serve as a record for performance assessment and will be referenced in future evaluations and reviews.

The Firm will have the opportunity to respond to the feedback, offering insights into their performance, challenges faced, and the strategies employed for issue resolution and project advancement. A collaborative approach will be adopted to identify areas of improvement and the necessary steps to enhance performance in subsequent phases.

5. Legal Considerations

5.1. Confidentiality

By submitting a proposal, the Firm/individual commits to the following:

  1. All information obtained during the engagement with CGIAR will be stored only on CGIAR servers/systems.
  2. None of the information obtained during the engagement with CGIAR shall be shared with any other party for any reason.
  3. The provided access by CGIAR shall only be used for this project and to communicate with CGIAR and only for this project.
  4. Access to Confidential Information will be limited to those of its employees or contractors who have a legitimate need to know such information for the project and who have agreed in writing to be bound by the terms of this NDA.
  5. All reasonable precautions will be taken to prevent the unauthorized disclosure or use of Confidential Information, including but not limited to implementing and maintaining adequate security measures.
  6. Access to CGIAR systems shall only be made from trusted machines with current protection standards.
  7. Access to CGIAR systems shall not be made from any sanctioned country by US laws applicable to MS products.

5.2. Contracting

The Firm should accept the CGIAR System Organization standard terms and conditions of contract in Annex 1.

If the Firm requires amendment of specific clauses, the firm must submit those contract clauses or the Firm’s template for our review and consideration. Please submit it in Word format as a separate document, along with the Firm’s confirmation of intent to submit a proposal.

CGIAR reserves the right to request additional information or clarification regarding the contract clauses or templates during the evaluation process. Submitting suggested clauses or templates does not guarantee that the firm will be awarded the contract. Final contract negotiations will be conducted with the selected firm based on the evaluation results.

6. Payment Terms

Standard payment terms will be Net 30 days from the date of invoice receipt. The invoicing schedule may vary based on the approach outlined in the prospective firm’s commercial proposal. Firms have the option to invoice either on the basis of measurable progress throughout the project or upon the submission and subsequent acceptance of final deliverables by CGIAR. This flexibility allows for alignment with the firm’s preferred billing structure while ensuring that payments are made in a timely manner following the standard Net 30-day policy.

7. Required Proposal Content:

This RFP document is not intended to limit the Firm’s submission content but rather to provide a framework for CGIAR to evaluate each proposal and determine which submission most closely addresses the needs. Firms are encouraged to provide any additional information or innovative approaches not specifically outlined in this RFP. Firms will provide any reasonable additional information upon request by the CGIAR.

7.1. Technical Proposal

General Information:

Contractor/Firm Details:

  • Name: Clearly state the name of the contractor or firm.
  • Primary Contact: Provide the name and title of the contact person.
  • Contact Information: Include the full mailing address, e-mail address, and telephone number for direct communication.

Business Profile:

  • Overview: A brief summary of the firm’s business operations.
  • History: State the date and place of incorporation or establishment and the duration for which similar services have been provided.
  • Clientele and Sector Experience: Describe the types of clients and sectors the Firm has previously served, including the number of clients and geographic or sectoral spread, to demonstrate the breadth and diversity of experience.

Understanding of Project Requirements:

  • Requirements Comprehension: Provide a concise summary of the firm’s understanding of the project’s requirements and expected outcomes, showcasing a grasp of the project’s scope and objectives.

Qualifications for Service Provision:

Reasons for Suitability: Elaborate on why the firm considers itself well-qualified to provide the services outlined in this RFP. This should include a discussion of the firm’s unique strengths, relevant experience, and any distinctive competencies that make it a suitable candidate for fulfilling the project’s needs.

Qualifications and Experience

  • Staff Quality and Expertise: The caliber and expertise of the personnel designated for this project are paramount. We are looking for individuals who demonstrate exceptional professional skills and a proven track record in similar engagements. Additionally, the availability and quality of the Firm’s technical consultants for this project will be a significant consideration.
  • Professional Credentials: It is essential that the team members hold relevant professional certifications and licenses, particularly in areas such as Sanctions Management, Anti- Money Laundering (AML), and other related disciplines.
  • Experience with Non-Profit International Organizations: Demonstrable experience in working with non-profit international organizations and other similar entities is crucial. This experience should highlight the Firm’s ability to understand and navigate the unique challenges and dynamics of such organizations.
  • Case Study Quality and Relevance: We will evaluate the relevance and quality of case studies provided. These should clearly demonstrate the firm’s proficiency and experience in handling similar projects and challenges.
  • Client References: Provision of client references along with contact information is required. These references will be used to verify the firm’s performance and client satisfaction in previous engagements.
  • Approach to Scope of Work: Detail the specific approach and methodology the firm plans to employ to meet the Scope of Work, Deliverables, and expectations as described in the RFP.
  • Deliverable Execution Strategy: Elucidate on the strategies and processes that will be implemented to ensure the successful completion of each deliverable.

Milestone Mapping and Schedule:

  • Key Milestones: Clearly outline the major milestones throughout the project lifecycle, providing a comprehensive roadmap of the project’s progression.
  • Responsibility Allocation: Specify the responsibilities and roles that will be assumed by different team members or departments within the firm for each phase of the project.
  • Effort Estimation: Provide an estimation of the level of effort required for each stage of the project, including resource allocation and potential challenges.
  • Timeline Projection: Present a proposed timeline for the completion of each phase, including start and end dates, ensuring that the timeline is realistic and aligns with the overall project deliverables and objectives.

7.2. Financial Proposal

Proposed fees should be presented in US$. The Proposal should indicate the costs for each phase while detailing the deliverables /milestones for each phase.


Based on the information shared and your responses in the deliverables section, please provide:

  1. Your commercial proposal indicating clear assumptions, risks, contingency and mitigation actions to support the successful delivery;
  2. Total cost for all elements of your proposed in $USD excluding taxes;
  3. A breakdown of the phases’ deliverables in $USD (excluding taxes) including any budgetary assumptions made, contingency and mitigation actions.
  4. A detailed Excel spreadsheet that shows the resource mix, by role, duration and rate across the phases (expected to see all applicable roles for your organization and your detailed expectations of the effort and team required from CGIAR).
  5. Indicative expenses and the basis of calculation. Travel will only be compensated in economy class and must only be undertaken on request of CGIAR.
  6. Identification of any project element to be subcontracted (if any), showing number of subcontractor hours and their hourly rates.
  7. An explanation of the pricing model that is used and how costs can be managed during the life of the project. Cost will be evaluated against other factors based upon the professional judgment of those involved in the evaluation.

Please note that all prices should exclude taxes. The CGIAR System Organization is exempted from duties and taxes in the French territory for services that support its official function. Multiple centers have the same tax exemption status in different jurisdictions (please refer to Annex 2).

We welcome the most optimal and cost-effective approach to cost certainty through the program; therefore, please provide your proposal to achieve this (e.g., financial cap, risk/reward).

CGIAR reserves the right to progress with all, one, or multiple activities of a bidder’s response based on its performance against the evaluation criteria.

8. Proposal Evaluation

The purpose of this section is to outline the evaluation criteria and process that will be used to assess and select the most qualified Firm.

8.1. Evaluation Criteria:

In the selection of the ideal Firm for this project, a comprehensive evaluation will be conducted. As a global organization, CGIAR is agnostic to the location of the Firms that participate in delivering the scope of work outlined in this RFP; however, flexibility in consideration of CGIAR’s global stakeholders and constituents is necessary, and any challenges should be addressed in the proposal.

Proposal Alignment:

Expectation: The Firm’s proposal should be clear, concise, and directly aligned with our specific requirements, demonstrating a thorough understanding and thoughtful approach to the CGIAR’s objectives and outlined deliverables.


Expectation: The submission of relevant case studies that highlight the Firm’s experience and success in similar projects. The showcased experience should resonate significantly with the needs and requirements of CGIAR.

Reputation and References:

Expectation: Provision of contact information for at least two previous clients or references who can attest to the Firm’s competence, professionalism, and reliability in delivering high-quality service.

Project Management and Communication:

Expectation: Evidence of the Firm’s proven strategies and tools for effective project management and communication, ensuring smooth collaboration, timely updates, and the efficient resolution of any issues or concerns.

Contractual and Legal Compliance:

Expectation: Assurance that the Firm comprehensively complies with all legal requirements and offers a transparent, fair contract that safeguards our interests.

Data Security and Privacy:

Expectation: Confirmation that the Firm adheres to industry best practices for data security and privacy, ensuring the utmost protection of sensitive information.

Cost and Budget:

Expectation: A clear, detailed breakdown of the Firm’s proposed fees including details of any assumptions. Timeline and Deliverables:

Project Timeline:

Expectation: Presentation of a realistic yet fl

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