Current and future missions:
This page contains the most up to date information on all current and future EOMs for which BEWC recruits. Bookmark the page by pressing CTRL + D and press 'refresh' in your browser or the F5 key to ensure you are looking at the latest version of the page.
Predicted Election Date
Due to the current global health concerns there are currently no missions. If this situation changes we will post an upate here.
Sad to report:
In recent months three of our most dedicated and experienced observers have died:
They will be sadly missed by the many people who knew them and our sincere condolences to their families.
IMPORTANT – REQUIRES YOUR ACTION!
GENERAL DATA PROTECTION REGULATIONS (GDPR) NOTICE
GDPR come into force on 21 May 2018. Their purpose is to limit and safeguard the use of personal information/data on individuals and its use by organisations that require it for legitimate purposes. There are 6 lawful bases on which information can be held and at least one must apply whenever information is processed. In the case of BRC-BEWC the legal basis is achieved by obtaining the clear consent of those affected for BRC-BEWC to process their personal data for specific purposes.
The specific purposes for which BRC-BEWC holds/processes information/data on individuals are:
- To maintain vital communication relating to opportunities and activities including election observation missions, projects, events, employment/ volunteering and/or Associate status;
- To enable assessment and selection for candidates seeking to participate in such activities;
- To provide information required by others, primarily OSCE or FCO as essential part of agreed activities.
The data held will include:
- Names, Gender, Date of Birth, Addresses, Telephone numbers; Email addresses; Name of emergency contact, Passports (scan), Photograph.
- Bank account details will be required when making payments to individuals. These should only be supplied when requested for the purposes of a specific payment.
The information you provide will be held electronically at BRC-BEWC and may be processed by BRC-BEWC employees for the purposes described above. Please ensure that you inform us of any changes in any of details.
WHAT DOES THIS MEAN FOR YOU?
- If you wish to participate in the work of BRC-BEWC, please print off the following statement, sign and date it, scan it and email to: email@example.com or send by post to our contact address.
- I understand that the information/data details I provide to BRC-BEWC will only be used for the three specific purposes set out in the GDPR Notice section of the BRC-BEWC website and may be passed to others where appropriate or required for those purposes.
NAME (Upper Case please) .......................................................
IMPORTANT - REQUIREMENT TO REGISTER ON ODIHR DATABASE
ALL OBSERVERS MUST NOW REGISTER THEMSELVES ON THE ODIHR DATABASE.
The recruitment and specific mission registration of our observers will remain fully the responsibility of BEWC and you should apply to BEWC for missions. Some of the material available might be interpreted as implying that your registration is an application – that is not correct (we have clarified with ODIHR). Nevertheless observers (and anyone wishing to apply to be an observer) must register themselves as soon as possible on the ODIHR database.
The process from now on is that:
- You (the observer) create an ‘account’ in the ODIHR database and complete your profile;
- You apply to BEWC in the usual way for specific missions (not using the database);
- BEWC consults with FCO on financial resources available;
- BEWC advises ODIHR by email (not using the database) how many observers will be provided;
- BEWC makes initial selection and checks that the selected observers appear in the database – so if you are not in it, you cannot be selected….!
- BEWC submits the list of nominated observers to ODIHR (using the database).
- ODIHR reviews the submitted nominations and, on their confirmation, BEWC undertakes (in consultation with observers) the observer’s registration process (using the database).
What should I do now?
Click on this link Election Expert Database.
Read the Experts Database User’s Manual – accessible via the link above, it takes you line by line through how to register, it also links to the privacy statement and other useful information
To create an account, click on https://electionexpert.odihr.pl
There are also useful click through sections on how to join a mission, FAQs and the necessary online training.
This system is now in operation. Please therefore take the time to read and act on the above.
All dates subject to confirmation.
Application is only open to UK citizens who hold UK passports.
All recruitment subject to a request from OSCE to provide a mission and allocation of a budget by FCO.
Invitations for LTO and STO applications will appear on this web-page. If they are not showing, we are not yet able to consider applications or offer places.
WHAT TO DO?
1. Please ensure that you are registered - and your registration is up-to-date - on the ODIHR database -see above.
2. Please check this website regularly for new missions and opportunities. We do not typically mailshot our observer roster.
3. All applications (see 'A few points for your application' below) should be sent by email only and include a CV and a brief statement of motivation, relevant experience and skills.
PLEASE ONLY USE EMAIL TO CONTACT US. OBSERVERS AND CANDIDATES SHOULD NOT TELEPHONE THE OFFICE OR THE STAFF UNLESS SPECIFICALLY REQUESTED TO DO SO OR IN AN EMERGENCY. Unfortunately, calls to express your interest and enthusiasm rapidly get out of hand, lock up staff time and can actually be counter-productive in your possible selection as an observer. We greatly value your commitment - but also your co-operation in this please. Many thanks.
4. ALL APPLICANTS PLEASE NOTE
In accordance with the requirements of OSCE/ODIHR missions when applying for consideration for missions ALL applicants should please provide specific answers to ALL the following questions
1. Are you in good physical condition with no health problems?
2. Are you free from any health condition that may prevent you from carrying out your deployment or may pose a threat to the health of others?
3. Are you free of any disabilities which may limit your undertaking deployment anywhere in the relevant country?
4. Have you ever been arrested, indicted, or summoned into court as a defendant in a criminal proceeding, or convicted, fined or imprisoned for the violation of any law (excluding minor traffic violations)
5. Have you ever been refused a visa or entry to the country to which you are applying to be a UK national observer on a OSCE/ODIHR election observation mission?
6. Do you have any interests, including but not limited to political or economic interests, which are incompatible with your status as an independent and impartial observer?
5. TRAINING REQUIRED
WARNING: While good training is of real value, it is just one aspect of suitability for a mission. Some observers who contact us, particularly new observers, have paid for courses run by other organisations that also select observers. This has in some cases been in the erroneous belief that this will substantially enhance their chances of selection. We prefer both to avoid this conflict of interest and to save our observers the associated expense and false expectations arising.
We direct observers and would-be observers to the FREE online training provided by OSCE for the following reasons:
a) it is now a mandatory requirement for OSCE observers to pass this course. No other course has this authority.
b) it is free of charge and thereby affordable by all.
c) it can be completed online anywhere and at your own speed
ONLINE TRAINING - NEW RELEASE JAN 2016
We recommend the web-based learning course http://www.odihrobserver.org developed by ODIHR for election observers. Modules in English or Russian. It is a seven module STO/LTO training to replace the previous online STO training course. It takes several hours to complete but can be saved and re-entered at any time. There are quizzes at the end of each module.
Completion of this on-line training is REQUIRED FOR LTOS AND STOS ALIKE. Even experienced observers are likely to learn from it.
As one observer put it "On mission, it becomes obvious who has completed this training and who has not – the questions asked at Briefings usually give it away."
When expressing interest in participating in a mission, candidates are requested to state whether they have completed the course successfully and to provide their certificate.
6. Are you a BEWC Associate?
Associate status is free-of-charge. Please see the link above for details.
It is not connected with selection for missions.
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Note on LTO and STO selection timetables
We receive a large number of applications – both general and specific – for LTO and STO posts. We are very grateful for these, so please keep them coming!
Phase 1: which missions? Election mission allocations are now typically 'batched' into 6-12 month groups (although there may be some later additions).
Once we know which missions BEWC is responsible for, we publish these on this website. Please note that these missions are always subject to OSCE subsequently inviting UK to provide observers and FCO funding being available.
Some observers send in applications before we request them. That is acceptable but does not advantage the applicant.
Once the budget for a mission is known (we do not control the timing of this) we invite (via the BEWC website) applications; and then shortlist and appoint LTOs as soon as possible and STOs thereafter.
Phase 2: application deadlines? We set out on the website the dates by which LTO and STO applications must be received (LTOs first). These will be indicative dates and may sometimes need to be revised. It is therefore key that you monitor the BEWC website regularly as periods for applications can often be short and we do not mailshot potential observers.
Please note that we are typically not invited to select STOs until the LTOs are in-country. We publish the LTO arrival in-country dates on this website and these are therefore some guide as to the earliest we are likely to be able to start on STO appointments. We may however call for applications ahead of time where we are involved in selections for more than one mission in the same period, as this enables us to liaise between missions in the selection process.
After the application deadlines we finalise selections and appointments. Fairness and optimising the team, as well as firming up appointments, mean that this process can take some time.Once this process is complete we will also indicate this on the website ("LTOs appointed"; "STOs appointed").
Phase 3: have I been selected?: Unfortunately it is not always practicable to reply to the large number of applications that we receive but have been unable to select for a particular mission. If you have not been contacted but observers are shown as "appointed" on the website, it is most likely that you have not been successful on this occasion. You will be in a reserve of applicants - as occasionally observers do drop out and we make late approaches to fill the spaces. No action is required from you on this as we will take the initiative when required. If the mission start date has passed, then you can definitely clear your diary.
We hope that this explanation and structured approach will be helpful to applicants.
FEEDBACK: We do not provide feedback on applications. BEWC receives many more applications than there are places for every mission and we know how disappointed some candidates are when not selected. Guidance is provided on this webpage as to how applicants should apply. If you are not successful in one application, please do accept it with good grace and feel free to apply again if you feel that you have the right skills and personality. We constantly seek to bring on new observers.
Note on UK Election Observer allowances for OSCE/ODIHR election observation missions (EOMs):
- The role of the ODIHR Short Term Observer (STO) is unpaid but a fixed allowance is payable to cover expenses of hotels and food etc. OSCE determines these allowances payable to all UK election Observers.
- In the case of accommodation and incidentals, OSCE provides guidance relevant to each EOM on the per diem rate in the capital city and also states that it is generally less outside the capital.
- OSCE also stipulates allowances for other items to be covered, including some items which may not be required - for example accommodation for drivers or interpreters, petrol, etc
- OSCE sets this out, along with other relevant information, in a Note Verbale to the FCO and to BEWC. BEWC passes this Note on to UK national election observers.
- Once selected and recruited, STOs are advanced funds in accordance with the OSCE stipulated maximum amount (as if based in the capital throughout, and paying out full amounts for all other categories).
- It is not clear pre-deployment how long the observer will spend in the capital or what level of other costs will be required. Where observers are deployed away from the capital city reduced per diem rates are paid to reflect the lower costs incurred outside the capital.
- When reporting post mission, observers are therefore required to state how many days were spent in the capital city and how many elsewhere, and their claim is adjusted automatically.
- In almost every case - as few observers remain in the capital throughout the EOM but have received the maximum allowance - this requires a refund to BEWC from the observer reflecting the difference between capital city and other rates of per diems etc.
- These refunds are not retained by BEWC. They are refunded to FCO to offset mission cost or for use in further FCO activity, including future ODIHR election observation missions.
Please note: All persons or any subcontractors engaged by BEWC in connection with provision of observers to FCO for Election Observation Missions should be aware of the Official Secrets Acts 1911-1989 and understand that these Acts apply to them during and after performance of any work or in connection with it.
Conflicts of Interest
Election Observers must not only be, but also be seen to be, entirely objective. In particular they must have no potential conflicts of interest in relation to their work for BEWC in the country concerned. This issue is, understandably, subject to ever-increasing scrutiny by stakeholders.
We require ALL candidate observers to let us know in writing at the time of each application of anything which might be considered, or be presented by others, as a conflict of interest.
We can then make enquiries and give a response on whether a candidate can be considered for a mission. Failure to inform us of possible conflicts may result (if discovered pre-departure) in cancellation of individual assignments or (if emerging later) compromise the mission as a whole. This not only reduces the effectiveness and credibility of monitoring but will also require us to seek cost recovery for flights, visas etc from the party not declaring the information.
Please therefore take this issue into account and, if in doubt, declare any possible conflict that might need to be cleared (for example, business, investment, political, representational, or professional interests and activities with the country concerned or elsewhere if relevant).
Many thanks for your understanding and co-operation in this matter.
Please note that we accept applications by email only. Thank you.
A FEW POINTS ON YOUR APPLICATION…..
Statement of Motivation
Keep it short (2-3 paras is generally enough) – provide specific evidence. Identify any conflicts of interest.
LTO and STO CVs
Note: EVEN IF YOU HAVE REGISTERED A CV ONLINE AT ODIHR PLEASE INCLUDE ONE WITH YOUR APPLICATION
We generally receive far more applications than places and we may be under time pressure to select and recruit. We seek to ensure a diversity of observers on our missions, from example of different backgrounds, levels of experience and age; and to bring on new observers where possible.
We do not ask for a standard format of CV - it is up to the applicant to decide how they wish to present themselves. However there are some things you can do which would help us:
PERSONAL Please put on your CV, or include in your email: a) your address, b) your date of birth and c) your passport number d) mobile telephone number
None of these feature in any way in our selection criteria, but selection moves quickly to appointment, and these details are required (for example) when registering you with OSCE and CECs. Going back later to observers who do not include these details is time-consuming and, for example, the lack of a DoB for one observer has on occasion hindered obtaining timely insurance quotations for the mission as a whole.
MULTIPLE ROUNDS. Some elections run to more than one round. We make this clear as far as possible at the time of recruiting - and contracts for STOs are automatically extendable to cover subsequent rounds.
We appreciate that genuine force majeure can make an observer not available for a second round. However in all other circumstances we do not appreciate observers signing with us without taking seriously the possible requirement to return for a second round.
When an observer pulls out after the first round, it isusually not possible to replace them. OSCE - after registering an observer with local authorities - does not generally introduce fresh observers in subsequent rounds. So this leaves a gap in the mission - and also makes a mess of the budget. It also means that experienced observers who, because they knew they would not be available for both rounds, exclude themselves from participation in a mission are penalised for their honesty.
So, please take this seriously and, if you are not sure about your avaiability for a second round, please make this clear in your application.
UP-FRONT AND CLEAR
Some CVS are so short that it is hard to assess them. Some are so long it is hard to find the stand-out qualities and experience of the applicant.
Please DO list your previous observation experience briefly near the start of your CV
- Sept 2015 Ukraine OSCE STO, Local elections, Kiev
- July 2015 Belarus OSCE STO, Presidential elections, Gomel
This is easier to assimilate than descriptions buried in paragraphs of text or with detailed descriptions of what you did on each mission – although these can be included further down if you wish.
Do not say “I have done a lot of election missions in the past” unless you have listed them as above. Your reader may not know what you have done, and will be short of time to hunt for it.
Please DO, especially if you have no mission experience yet, list key points that might be relevant upfront too:
- Fluent Russian speaker
- 4 years (dates) political analyst for Ukraine at Company X
- 5 years (dates) Electoral Returns Officer (Leicester)
- 2 years (dates) in Baku with Human Rights NGO (name)
- 2 years (dates) East Europe Desk for Balkans at FCO
- MA in Central Asian Studies (SOAS) (date)
Give relevant details further down.
While anyone is welcome to apply, it is likely that you will complete at least several STO missions before considering an LTO role.
Full LTO CVs are often asked for by embassies and OSCE. Please therefore send us a CV that you would be happy to be forwarded (for example with your contact details included?) in this way.
AND FINALLY, please tell us….
Where the mission will require a visa, are you (and your only passport) likely to be away in the 3-4 weeks before the mission?
Are you are about to go to another timezone or somewhere out of email contact? Will your mobile work for texts? Do we have your number?
Have you applied for a mission but now taken up another commitment? There is no point your CV going through shortlisting etc if you are no longer available.
We hope this is helpful. Many thanks!