Invitation to tender for delivery and facilitation of online dialogues

LENS (Linking the Environment North and South): All Island Civil Society Forum on the Environment:

Northern Ireland Environment Link (NIEL) and the Irish Environment Network (IEN) are the two membership organisations for the environmental charity sectors in Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland. NIEL has more than 65 organisational members and IEN has 34.

Both IEN and NIEL have been working together on joint projects for a number of years. However, the withdrawal of the UK from the EU has demonstrated a need for environmental civil society organisations north and south to engage in greater all-island collaboration. The most recent collaboration between IEN and NIEL was the commissioning of research on post-Brexit all-island environmental governance and recommendations on improving environmental cooperation on the island. One of the recommendations of the report was the establishment of an all-island civil society dialogue/forum on the environment.

IEN and NIEL have been successful in securing funding to run an all-island forum on the environment and are now looking for an experienced external consultant/s with significant facilitation experience to assist in the development and management of the Forum over the next year.

This project is being funded by the Government of Ireland Shared Island Civic Society Fund

Project Aim:

The main purpose of this project is to promote and deepen cooperation and dialogue between Northern Ireland and Republic of Ireland ENGOs and environmental civil society groups in order that the sector be equipped to fully engage with, and respond to, the new environmental regulatory and governance context post-Brexit

This project will give participants an opportunity to partake in an in-depth dialogue on the environment with a focus on north/south cooperation.

Finally, a key aim of the Forum is to create lasting networks between environmental civil society organisations north and south.

Project Description:

The project will be open to participants from any Enviromental civil society organisation, be they local or national, and we will encourage attendance from all parts of the island.

The project will take the form of five facilitated thematic dialogues and a final in-person networking

Each of the dialogues will explore a specific environmental challenge such as climate, biodiversity or
water quality. The participants will discuss possible solutions and policy responses that they believe
are appropriate for introducing/implementing/exploring on an all-island basis or on both sides of the
border. These solutions/policy responses will be recorded by the organisers and presented at the
final Networking Forum.

The online dialogues will be followed by in in-person Networking Forum, providing participants with
the opportunity to network with each other. There will be a report to the Forum on the results of
the dialogue.

This project will be inclusive of all interested environmental civil society groups whether they are
members of IEN or NIEL or not.


The facilitated thematic dialogues will take place online in order to facilitate a wide attendance of
participants across the island.

The final networking event will however take place in person, to facilitate deeper networking and
relationship building between participants. This event will be held in a location accessible by public
transport in the border area.


The main output will be the holding of five thematic dialogues followed by a report on the process
and results. The consultant facilitator/s will be expected to plan, co-ordinate, deliver and report on
the dialogues. The consultant/s will also deliver a presentation on the report to the final networking

The consultant will be expected to:

Plan and deliver the five dialogues from initial call for participants to final report including:

• Managing the invites (including supplying programme for this purpose , e.g. Eventbrite)
• Supplying and managing the online platform to be used
• In consultation with NIEL and IEN planning the content and agenda/format of the dialogues
(including consultation of participants on themes for dialogue, e.g. by survey)
• Facilitating the dialogues
• Producing a report on the dialogues

The successful consultant/s will report to an IEN and NIEL project steering group.

Criteria for Appointment

Criteria for Applicants:

  • At least two years’ experience delivering similar programmes
  • Specific experience in facilitation of workshops or dialogues in either cross-community or other civil society programmes
  • Excellent facilitation, communication, and interpersonal skills
  • Specific experience of use of online tools for dialogue and deliberation
  • Access to tools for online dialogue and deliberation
  • Specific experience in report writing


  • Good knowledge of environmental issues

Submissions will be evaluated in accordance with following criteria:

Criteria Commentary Weighting
Value for Money  

Your submission should include a detailed breakdown of costs; this must include the proposed number of days work, and the daily fee rates.


Previous experience of facilitation  

Evidence of skills/experience in facilitation of similar events, including brief portfolio of relevant work is required (At least 3 examples); information/CVs on who will be delivering  the project


Previous experience of project management  

Evidence of experience in managing projects of a similar scale and nature, including management of online participative events, event administrative and management experience,  Submissions must provide evidence of knowledge and experience of use of online event technology/tools.


Delivery methodology T

enderers must describe the methodology they will use to deliver the dialogues with specific reference to both facilitation approach and practical delivery of online dialogue events



Ability to complete work within the agreed timeframe



Failure to include all of the above may lead to disqualification.

Timeframe and Reporting

The programme will run from end November 2023 until September 2024, with the following milestones anticipated:

– Project Initiation – End November 2023

– Agreed priority actions – Early December 2023

– Final report – September 2024


The project will be managed by a Steering Group comprised of staff from NIEL and IEN.

The successful tenderer will be required to report regularly to the Steering Group.



A maximum sum of €15,200 + VAT is available for this contract, which must include all other expenses including any travel, personal expenses, events or other engagements.

Tenderers should price accordingly to gain a competitive advantage.

Tenders received over this amount will not be considered.


Proposal Submissions

Email submissions to:

Deadline for Submissions:

 12 PM Friday, 10 November 2023

Any queries should be submitted in writing by noon on Wednesday November 1st

We are not bound to accept either the lowest or any of the quotes received.

This project is funded by the Government of Ireland Shared Island Civic Society Fund