Call for Tender: Analysis – The political economy of armed youth movements within Tigray-Amhara tensions

Job Category

Job Experience

Job Location

Expiration Date

08 Jul 2020

Do you want to make a real difference to peace? Are you interested in using your skills to shape conflict resolution?

The European Institute of Peace is looking for exceptional individuals who share our vision for a world where people live in safety and peace because conflicts and grievances are resolved through inclusive dialogue and lasting political agreements.

We design and help deliver sustainable peace processes and agreements by providing practical experience, technical expertise and policy advice on conflict resolution. We use a variety of tools to help us do this, including analysis, mapping and design, facilitating policy discussions, mediation support and practical engagement.

Based in Brussels and active in 15 countries, the European Institute of Peace is an independent organization working collaboratively with European decision makers, the parties to conflict, and those who represent people suffering from insecurity or at risk of violence, as well as the conflict prevention, resolution and mediation community.

Our approach enables us to be agile, creative, trustworthy and effective in everything we do, and these are key qualities we look for in our team members. 

See for more information.

We are looking for consultancy and research services for the analysis of the political economy of armed youth movements within Tigray-Amhara tensions. The primary target audience of the analysis are Ethiopian and international political analysts with knowledge of Ethiopian politics.

Contract title: Analysis – the political economy of armed youth movements within Tigray-Amhara tensions

Location: Ethiopia

1. Introduction

1.1 Background

Extremism has emerged in Ethiopia along political, ethnic, and religious lines. Political and ethnic motivations are frequently closely interlinked. Clashes between multiple ethnically organised youth groups, or between youth groups and security forces, occur regularly.

One nexus where such violence has occurred is on the border between Amhara and Tigray. There are a number of different factors that coincide here. There are contested territories between the regional states, a hangover from the transition and change in geographical organisation of Gondar region/Tigray region after the fall of the Derg, which has served to mobilise local militants in Amhara that threaten to take back the territories by arms. The Fano youth groups have long protested and used violence in the Amhara region. Recently, a Tigrayan youth movement called Fenkil has organised protests in Tigray, including around Welkait woreda. The presence of the ethnic Raya minority, who live along the border between Tigray and Amhara and have maintained their distinctive identity, is another complicating factor. Traditional loosely organised vigilante groups, such as the gobezaleqa, and former members of the federal forces, miles, further complicate the task of the regional and federal governments in responding to extremism and violence. In response, both states have built up significant special police forces, heavily armed and equipped, that are also largely manned by the youth of the regions. Finally, the Tigrayan ambition to organise a regional election even if the national election is postponed could further provide incentives for destabilisation efforts between Amhara and Tigray.

Within this context, there is little information available on the motivations of young people to join militant and armed youth groups. The purpose of this paper would be to evaluate the political economy of these youth groups, using the case of Tigray-Amhara tensions as a framework within which these tensions play out.

1.2 Relevance to EIP

EIP has been active in Ethiopia since 2017 and is currently implementing an EU-funded programme focused on reducing the drivers of internal and external extremism in Ethiopia (August 2019 – February 2021). The intervention intends to strengthen Ethiopia’s approaches and capacity to address internal and external threats of extremism and political violence. One of the outputs is to develop a deepened understanding of political movements and developments across the country that have an impact on extremism. This is done through activities of research, mapping, and the creation of networks. The requested research report would contribute to a deepened understanding by providing an in-depth analysis, mapping, and assessment of threats and risk factors in the lead-up to the national elections.

2. Description of the research

2.1 Main objective

The research will provide a thorough analysis of the political economy of armed youth groups within the framework of Tigray-Amhara tensions.

2.2 Specific deliverables and terms of reference

Specifically, the service provider will provide the following deliverables:

- A finalised research product in accordance with the terms of reference outlined below:

1.To conduct interviews and research for the development of the paper;

2.To ensure that the field research and the subsequent policy recommendations paper address the following questions:

  • which youth groups are currently active in the border area?
  • who are the individuals that make up these youth groups, and what are the political, ideological, and economic motivations for youth to join militant and armed youth groups?
  • what are the sources of finance, revenue, and arms for these youth groups?
  • how are these movements linked to political establishments in Bahir Dar/Gondar and Mekelle?
  • to what extent can each of these groups be classified as extremist or violent extremist?
  • what are the future risks and scenarios related to extremist youth groups as Ethiopia moves towards national elections?
  • How might these groups be engaged with or utilised as a way of understanding local youth concerns and creating effective youth engagement in politics?
  • what actionable recommendations to prevent violent extremism can be identified from the case study for Ethiopian and international policymakers?

3.To keep EIP duly informed about the progress of the research in accordance with the below timeline, as well as through fortnightly virtual meetings;

4.To agree with EIP the exact start date and delivery date; and

5.To remain available for the finalisation of the paper for at least one (1) months after that date.

2.3 Timeline



Publication date

 29 June 2020

Deadline for submitting tenders

8 July 2020 at 23:59 hours CET

Interviews (if any)



No later than 15 July 2020

Notification of award

No later than 15 July 2020 2020

Contract signature

No later than 15 July 2020

Start date

Indicative – August 2020 (to be agreed)

Paper outline

Indicative – early September (to be agreed)

First draft

Indicative – September 2020 (to be agreed)

Final draft

Indicative – October 2020 (to be agreed)

2.4 Target audience

The primary target audience of the analysis are Ethiopian and international political analysts with knowledge of Ethiopian politics. The paper will be publicly available.

2.5 Budget

The maximum budget for this tender is EUR 15,000. This will be inclusive of all fees, costs, and expenses incurred by the contractor in the production of the research.

2.6 Monitoring and comments

EIP’s Programme team, consisting of Programme Manager, Programme Officer, and Senior Advisor, will monitor the delivery of the research as set out according to the above deliverables and timelines. EIP will report progress to the EU Delegation to Ethiopia and the Service for Foreign Policy Instruments in the EU Delegation to Kenya in a timely manner.

Upon submission of the draft report EIP will provide the contractor with feedback after which the contractor will submit a final draft.

2.7 Language

The language of the final research product and all intermediate notes is to be English.

2.8 Presentation and copyright

The final report will be published as a policy brief formatted according to the standard lay-out of the European Institute of Peace. The name, organisation, and logo of the contractor can be displayed on the report alongside the EIP logo. EIP will retain all copyright rights of usage to the report.

3. Qualifications and Requirements

Exclusionary criterium:

  • Submission of a comprehensive proposal outlining the proposed methodology and budget;
  • Have the right to work in Ethiopia.

Technical qualifications:

  • An excellent understanding of Ethiopian politics, and in particular the politics of Tigray and Amhara;
  • Extensive experience in line with the terms of reference outlined above;
  • Extensive experience in writing and/or reporting on Ethiopia;
  • Excellent networks, sources, and contacts in Amhara and Tigray regional states; and
  • Fluency in English, with any of the languages spoken in Ethiopia a significant benefit.

4. Submission of proposals and criteria for evaluation

The interested consultant / consultancy firm is invited to submit:

  • the proposal in one (1) attachment covering technical and financial aspects of the proposal using the organisation and methodology attached.
  • CV of the consultant(s) who will undertake the research

Please submit all above documents via email to:

Deadline 8 July 2020 at 23:59 hours CET.

EIP will select the provider on the basis of:

  • the qualifications and requirements outlined above (exclusionary criteria that applicants have to meet);
  • The quality of the proposal (80% weight)
  • The cost of the proposal (20% weight)

EIP is under no obligation to award the contract or to award it to the bidder whom scored the highest points. Kindly note that we unfortunately cannot accept telephone inquiries.

Should you require any additional information, please contact Camille Schyns at


Before you apply, read the latest news about EU policies on EURACTIV.COM.

Employers want to know how you found their job advert so please state that you found this position advertised on the EURACTIV JobSite.

The JobSite can give you more...
Get a bi-weekly newsletter featuring the latest jobs published online here.
Become the JobSite's fan on Facebook.
Follow us on Twitter and receive the latest news and job of the day.


Disclaimer: EURACTIV is not responsible for the content of the job vacancies published. Reproduction or redistribution of the above text, in whole, part or in any form, requires the prior consent of the original source. Terms and Conditions apply.