National Baseline Assessment on Business and Human Rights for Scottish Government

National Baseline Assessment on Business and Human Rights for Scottish Government

The Scottish Government wishes to commission a baseline assessment on the implementation of business and human rights standards in Scotland.

CONTRACT NOTICE – NATIONAL
SERVICES

1 Authority Details

1.1

Authority Name and Address


Scottish Government

Equality, Human Rights and Third Sector Division, 3H South, Victoria Quay,

Edinburgh

eh6 6qq

UK

Trevor Owen – Human Rights Policy Manager

+44 01312445169

trevor.owen@scotland.gsi.gov.uk
http://www.scotland.gov.uk
http://www.publiccontractsscotland.gov.uk/
http://www.publiccontractsscotland.gov.uk/

1.2

Address from which documentation may be obtained

As in 1.1

1.3

Completed documents must be returned to:

As in 1.1

2 Contract Details

2.1

Title

National Baseline Assessment on Business and Human Rights

2.2

Description of the goods or services required

1. The Scottish Government wishes to commission a baseline assessment on the implementation of business and human rights standards in Scotland.

Background

2. The debate around relevance of the international human rights framework to the activities of the business community is a relatively recent development, and has been brought into greater focus with the active engagement of the United Nations and the endorsement of the Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights in 2011 (the ‘Ruggie’ principles, or the UNGPs) to which UN members are now expected to give effect. The UK Government has developed an action plan to do so, which was launched in 2013 . A number of other states have either produced, or are in the process of producing, an Action Plan . These are usually informed by some form of baseline assessment in relation to how the state is implementing the UNGPs.

3. The Scottish Government is committed to the creation of a modern, inclusive Scotland that protects, respects and realises international human rights standards for all who live in Scotland. Scotland has a role to play as a responsible global citizen in an increasingly interconnected and interdependent world.

4. We have been closely involved in the development and the implementation of Scotland’s National Action Plan for Human Rights (SNAP). Launched on 10 December 2013 , SNAP is described as a “roadmap for the progressive realisation of international human rights in Scotland”. It has been facilitated by the Scottish Human Rights Commission in coproduction with a range of public and third sector partners, including Government, public bodies, umbrella organisations and civil society organisations. SNAP’s vision is of a Scotland in which everyone is able to live with human dignity, and it coordinates action by a wide range of public bodies and voluntary organisations towards achieving this vision, which is underpinned by agreed outcomes, priorities and a process for working together from 2013 to 2017 to progressively realise the potential of human rights in all areas of life. In this specific context, SNAP commits partners to the development of an action plan to implement the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights in Scotland and raise awareness among businesses in Scotland of their human rights responsibilities. In order to develop an action plan of sufficient quality, it is necessary to establish a baseline understanding of:

• How we are currently giving effect to the UNGPs within the devolved context;

• What levers we have under the current devolved settlement to make policy choices to implement the UNGPs;

• What mechanisms exist for individuals and groups to seek remedy in the event of alleged adverse human rights impacts connected to the activities of businesses based or operating in Scotland, and how effective and accessible are these mechanisms; and

• What good practice exists within the business community in relation to respecting human rights in line with the UNGPs.

Aim and Objectives

5. The aim of this work is to produce a researched evidence base that will inform and underpin the development of an action plan on business and human rights. The baseline will provide an understanding of the current position in Scotland with respect to our approach to the UNGPs, and support the identification of potential gaps in practice, helping partners to understand existing good practice in approach to the UNGPs by the business community. It will underpin further collective steps (through Government, public bodies, business and third sector organisations) within the SNAP framework to better give effect to the UNGPs. To deliver on the above aim, the successful contractor will be expected to engage with stakeholders through primarily qualitative measures, including the use of surveys and face to face discussions.

Aim and Objectives

5. The aim of this work is to produce a researched evidence base that will inform and underpin the development of an action plan on business and human rights. The baseline will provide an understanding of the current position in Scotland with respect to our approach to the UNGPs, and support the identification of potential gaps in practice, helping partners to understand existing good practice in approach to the UNGPs by the business community. It will underpin further collective steps (through Government, public bodies, business and third sector organisations) within the SNAP framework to better give effect to the UNGPs. To deliver on the above aim, the successful contractor will be expected to engage with stakeholders through primarily qualitative measures, including the use of surveys and face to face discussions.

Design and Methodology

6. Qualitative research methods will be key to undertaking the work and could include discussions in a boardroom context, small focus groups / and or interviews with employers and employees. An initial survey of participants could also be considered prior to undertaking any qualitative research. We also welcome methodologies informed by more innovative and creative approaches. The successful contractor will be expected to engage with stakeholders to select research participants. In the proposed approach, contractors should clearly set out how they will go about developing the key themes outlined at paragraph 7, with a view to achieving the desired objective. Tenders should outline the rationale for their stated approach, including any ethical issues, risks, consideration of cost implications and possible limitations and how these will be addressed.

7. In conducting the baseline assessment, the contractor should research and report on specific aspects, which are set out below.

State duty to protect human rights

7.1 Consider whether there are effective law and policies in place in Scotland in for preventing, investigating and, where appropriate, addressing any human rights impacts of business. Regard should be given to relevant international/regional instruments and standards (e.g. treaties, declarations); relevant domestic law (employment; environmental; property and land; equal opportunities; health and safety; corporate; trade; tax; disclosure and reporting; procurement; bribery and corruption; ‘whistleblower’ protection; information and communications; and others, including criminal and civil liability for business-related human rights impacts); enforcement of existing law; processes for ongoing review of gaps in law and policy, and for assessing the impact on human rights of law and policy relating to business; facilitating access to justice (e.g. legal aid and assistance); support for, education about, and approach to, the UNGPs; and the extent of devolved competence in all these matters.

7.2 Please set out the extent to which the Scottish Government makes clear its expectations of the business community in Scotland to respect human rights across business operations. Set out what guidance and support is offered and available to businesses to enable, encourage and incentivise them to respect human rights. This could include (but is not limited to) guidance and support on human rights due diligence; on the protection of vulnerable/marginalised groups; for sensitive, high-risk or significant sectors; and on doing business in conflict-affected areas.

7.3 Please set out the ways in which the Scottish Government ensures that businesses it fully or partly owns, controls or supports; or that it enters into contracts with for the provision of services, respect human rights in their operations and supply chains. Consider human rights and equality impact assessments; selection processes to award contracts, taking into account subcontractors; any contractual obligations to comply with human rights standards; and monitoring of performance and enforcement of contracts.

7.4 Please set out the extent to which the Scottish Government facilitates a coherent approach so that all areas of government observe human rights obligations in their interactions with business. Consider any tensions between promoting business growth and ensuring adherence to human rights obligations; the extent to which human rights are seen as a driver of economic growth; how government ensures that economic agreements with bilateral partners or with business enterprises do not hinder compliance with human rights obligations; and any efforts to promote business respect for human rights in and through multilateral institutions.

Corporate responsibility to respect human rights

7.5 Set out whether there are businesses (including small and medium enterprises) that have a statement of policy that demonstrates an understanding of, and commitment to, their responsibility to respect human rights. Consider the size of the business and the sector in which it operates; the human rights standards to which the policy refers; the level of seniority at which the policy is approved/endorsed; how the policy is communicated internally and externally; if it is linked to overall business objectives; ways in which the policy influences operational policies, procedures and practices throughout the business, its partners and supply chain; whether training is available for relevant staff. Consider whether business support groups and umbrella organisations within the business community play a role in relation to advising on the UNGPs.

7.6 Set out the extent to which there are businesses in Scotland that carry out human rights due diligence on their own operations and any other activities with which they are connected in conducting business. Consider any assessment of actual and potential human rights impacts, with specific regard for vulnerable and marginalised groups; whether any such assessment integrates the findings into internal processes; whether an assessment leads to the business taking appropriate preventative or remedial action and tracks the effectiveness of responses; whether the business effectively communicates how impacts are addressed; whether the approach is appropriate for the size and nature of the business; and whether the process of assessment is ongoing and involves meaningful consultation with affected parties.

7.7 Set out whether there are businesses in Scotland that help to ensure access to remedy for people adversely impacted by their activities, through for example cooperating with mechanisms established for this purpose); and through establishing or participating in operational-level grievance mechanisms that are designed and conducted in consultation with the stakeholder groups for whose use they are intended, and based on engagement and dialogue as the means to address and resolve grievances.

Access to remedy

7.8 Set out the range of mechanisms (e.g. access to courts or tribunals, ombudspersons or other mechanisms provided for in legislation and other administrative means) that exist in Scotland to provide access to remedies for people adversely impacted by activities of businesses in Scotland, whether at home or abroad.

7.9 Set out the steps taken by the Scottish Government and others to ensure the effectiveness of such judicial and other mechanisms. Consider whether there is public and targeted dissemination of information about mechanisms; removal of barriers to access; assistance provided to particular vulnerable / marginalised groups who may wish to access mechanisms; measures to ensure impartiality, integrity and competence within mechanisms; and measures to ensure that non-judicial mechanisms are legitimate, accessible, predictable, equitable, transparent, rights-compatible and a source of continuous learning.

Expectations

8. The key outputs will be a final report that meets the aim and objectives of the research as outlined in paragraph 7. All written reports must be prepared in a clear, accessible and concise manner, be submitted in a publishable standard and include an executive summary. The format of the report must also comply with Scottish Government standards on Inclusive Communication . One draft of the report, research summary and policy recommendation paper will be required before final drafts are agreed and contractors should allow for this in the timetable and costs proposed. Contractors will be expected to discuss the findings with the Scottish Government.

9. The Contractor will be responsible for the completion of the research and stakeholder engagement, and the preparation of the final report to a standard agreed by the Scottish Government.

10. It is for the Contractor to ensure that the proposed methodology does not contravene the provisions of the Data Protection Act 1998.

11. The Contractor should be willing and able to provide the Client with such reports of its work on the Project at such intervals and in such form as the Client may from time to time require. Such reports should show progress of research in relation to any contractual programme or timetable, the cost of work during the period covered by the report and a review of any factors likely to affect the satisfactory completion of the Project in accordance with the timetable. This may by exception require audit reports on money spent by the Contractor to date at any time during the contract period.

12. It is the responsibility of the contractor to notify the Scottish Government project manager of any real or potentially perceived conflicts of interest that may arise due to the nature of the consultation topic. If there are real or perceived conflicts of interest, details should be given about how these will be addressed in the management of the project or a decision should be made as to whether you wish to submit a proposal for the work.

13. The Contractor must not undertake any work while engaged in terms of this Contract that would lead to a conflict of interest between its duties to the Client and its duties in carrying out that other work, or which would mean that it would be unable to meet its obligations in terms of the Contract.

14. The Contractor will be required to carry out the Project with due diligence, care and attention. The Contractor will be expected to conduct its research with a view to reaching evidence-based findings and should, if required, be able to demonstrate a clear line of reasoning in the reaching of such findings which can be substantiated such with clear and accurately recorded data.

15. The Contract will be managed by the Scottish Government who will be responsible for the day-to-day liaison with the contractor. Contractors will be expected to attend up to 3 meetings with the Scottish Government for this project, as outlined in the timetable below.

16. Contractors will be expected to provide regular and frequent progress updates to the project manager. Details of this arrangement will be agreed at the inception meeting.

17. Contractors will also be expected to attend up to three meetings with the Client, as outlined in the timetable below. This includes an inception meeting, a meeting to discuss points arising from the draft report and a meeting to discuss the final report.

18. The ownership of the produced materials including the final report and any data produced as a result of the research lies with the Scottish Ministers. The Scottish Government reserves the right to publish the final report.

NOTE: To register your interest in this notice and obtain any additional information please visit the Public Contracts Scotland Web Site at http://www.publiccontractsscotland.gov.uk/Search/Search_Switch.aspx?ID=396942.

2.3

Notice Coding and Classification

159999 other Consultancy

100 All Scotland
120 Highlands and Islands
130 Aberdeen & North-East
140 Tayside, Central & Fife
150 Glasgow & Strathclyde
160 Edinburgh & Lothians
170 Scotland South
180 Outside Scotland

2.4

Total quantity or scope of tender

PRICING SCHEDULE

1. The budget available for this work is between £15,000 and £30,000.

2. The pricing of tenders will form 30% of the total score under award criteria.

3. Tenderers must provide a fixed price (i.e. not subject to change) in pounds sterling and exclusive of VAT for the total cost of delivering the contract specified within the Instructions for Tenderers during the contract period of July 2015 to January 2016.

4. For information, tenderers are requested to provide a price breakdown of their overall tendered price. All pricing submitted as part of the Contractor costs must be included in the following format. Please note that any other prices which appear elsewhere in the proposal but which are not summarised in such a format will be presumed waived and therefore not payable.

Description Cost without variation in any respect (ex-VAT)

e.g. researcher

5. Price shall be exclusive of VAT and provide for the completion of the work outlined in Schedule 1 (Specification of Requirement). Price shall include all costs associated with the performance of the contract including management and administration; resources; equipment; overheads; and travel/subsistence. Tenderers should illustrate how they will approach and deliver the work within the timetable (i.e. methodology, research and reporting, project management – including estimated number of staff days/time, costs, quality assurance and risk assessment).

3 Conditions for Participation

3.1

Minimum standards and qualification required

4 Administrative Information

4.1

Type of Procedure

Single stage – Any candidate may submit a tender.

4.2

Reference number attributed to the notice by the contracting authority

N/a

4.3

Time Limits

a) Time-limit for obtaining documentation

b) Time-limit for receipt of completed tenders
19-06-2015  Time  12:00

c) Estimated award date 01-07-2015

4.5

Language or languages in which tenders or requests to participate can be drawn up

EN

4.6

Tender Submission Postbox

5 Other Information

5.1

Additional Information

(SC Ref:396942)

5.2

Additional Documentation

Baseline assessment on business and human rights in Scotland – ITT document

5.3

Publication date of this notice

11-05-2015

Express an interest online

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