Request for proposals for web-based evidence map and database platforms

Issued: 4 October 2017               Submission deadline: 19 October 2017 

1. About the Campbell Collaboration

The Campbell Collaboration is an international NGO which supports the production and use of evidence synthesis of rigorous evidence in the fields of social and economic policy. Campbell has a well-established system for the production of systematic reviews with over 140 reviews published in the Campbell Library to date.   

Campbell plans to diversify the range of evidence products published in the Campbell Library, including evidence and gap maps (EGMs). This is a request for proposals to build platforms for Campbell EGMs and the underlying database of studies.  

2. Background

The Campbell Library is a global repository of high quality evidence synthesis, produced by research teams from around the world. The Library is managed by a small secretariat based in Oslo.

Evidence and gaps maps are an evidence synthesis product with a pictorial representation of the evidence. The map is populated by data from an underlying database.

Campbell plans to publish maps in the Campbell Library. To achieve this, we are issuing this request for proposals for an evidence map platform which can be used to populate maps, and a single underlying database of studies, which contains the data from all maps.

Evidence maps are currently published by a number of organizations. Examples include: 

Companies submitting proposals are recommended to familiarize themselves with the above maps. 

The Campbell maps will be most like those from 3ie, including the interactive nature linking back to records in the database, exporting of findings, having categories and sub-categories for both interventions and outcomes. We are identifying differences which will likely include: clear statement of number of included studies, freezing the title pains when scrolling through the map content (cf Excel freeze pains), and a key which is map-specific. 

3. Scope of work

The web company will work with Campbell staff to design, develop, implement and maintain a database and map platform.

The data to populate Campbell evidence maps will comprise a database of records containing primary dimensions, secondary dimensions, and other information. The primary dimensions are the row and column headings for the map. The secondary dimension are filters. And the other dimensions are used in the underlying database of studies. Secondary and other dimensions may be portrayed in the map depending on the design agreed for maps with the web company.

The platform should have a user-friendly back end to allow study teams preparing maps to upload their data to create a new map. Bulk upload of data from data prepared in Excel or Access should be possible. The backend is password protected, with Campbell being able to assign a unique password to each study team.

It should be possible to update maps through the backend, uploading new studies into the database either singularly or in bulk.

All entered studies should be included in a single database which will be searchable by a set of agreed fields.

The platform will be separate from the Campbell website, so the proposal should also outline and cost hosting arrangements.

3.1. Responsibilities

The company will be responsible for the activities below:

 3.1.1 Maintenance 

  • Management and maintenance of the map and database platform hosting including oversight of the web-hosting contract with inputs from Campbell. 
  • Maintenance of the software in working order as delivered. Daily back-up sufficient for full recovery (off-site) 
  • Yearly full disaster recovery test 
  • Target 99 per cent uptime. 
  • Technical support via on- line ticketing system, text or voice chat on Skype, or via telephone 
  • Regular check for broken links, images and template distortions 
  • Software updates and security patches for the hosting platform 
  • Monitoring log files and clearing them before they fill the disk 
  • Support in compiling comprehensive web analytic and database analytic reports e.g. google analytics. The final choice should be agreed with the client on the basis of sample reports. 
  • Forensic investigation should a breach of security be suspected 
  • Repair of any damage to the platform caused by any security breaches 
  • Correction of any errors caused by incorrect configuration of the platform 
  • Upgrading the data, processing and memory capacity of the platform, or migrating to a new platform as agreed in writing 
  • First level diagnosis of any problem with the services above 
  • Periodic bug fixes and troubleshooting 

3.1.2 Website design and development 

The following list offers examples of some, but not all tasks: 

  • Proposed design for database and evidence map pages, developed in consultation with Campbell. 
  • Design new page lay outs for the final design (front end) 
  • Design new templates for adding content in through the administration system (back end) 
  • Introduce plug-ins and integrate any new third-party applications to the platform, when applicable 
  • Support open access requirements 
  • Ensure website is friendly for all users, including those with disabilities (as per web content accessibility guidelines available at or using languages other than English 
  • Fix defects 
  • Optimise the website to enhance discoverability, including for mobile devices 
  • Social Media integration and quick share features 
  • A manual for users inputting backend data 

3.1.3 Phasing of work 

Campbell and the contractor will agree to the phasing the work to be conducted.  

The following data are already set: 

  • A representative of the web company should attend a consultation on one of Campbell’s maps in London (UK) on Friday November 12. 
  • The beta version of the map should be operational by December 31, 2017 
  • The final version should be operational by Thursday February 4, 2018. 

4. Eligibility and minimum qualifications 

Only registered companies or organisations, not individuals, are eligible to apply.

Service providers must demonstrate capacity to be responsive to development

requests within ten work days or fewer after a request is finalised. Providers

should assign a design and development relationship manager responsible for

understanding our site and needs in detail. 

5. How to apply 

Interested companies or organisations will submit a proposal package that will contain the following elements: 

  • Technical proposal (part A) a. A proposal (up to 20 pages) about how they will provide design and development, maintenance services and platform hosting. b. The CVs (maximum 3 pages) of the key team members that will be involved in the project, along with their key duties and where they are physically located c. A brief profile (maximum 2 pages) of the company or organisation d. A list of assignments executed of similar nature in the last three years e. Statement of experience (1-3 pages) working with funding agencies, international development sector organisations, research producing institutions and with audiences similar to Campbell’s. 
  • Financial proposal (part B) f. Indicative rates for all of the services provided g. Explanation of how work is charged h. Statement of how the applicant delivers value for money. All amounts should be in US$. 

All submitted documents must be in English. 

Proposals should be submitted to Howard White with the subject "Database and evidence map proposal".

Download PDF here.


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