Field Office Director (Zimbabwe) Recruitment Notice

The Carter Center

Democracy Program
International Election Observation Mission
Harare, Zimbabwe

Field Office Director Recruitment Notice

The Carter Center is guided by a fundamental commitment to human rights and the alleviation of human suffering; it seeks to prevent and resolve conflicts, enhance freedom and democracy, and improve health.

Pending donor funding and accreditation, The Carter Center plans to deploy an international election observation mission to Zimbabwe, and is recruiting technical experts for a core team. The Center is currently recruiting a highly-qualified individual to serve as Field Office Director surrounding the upcoming general elections in Zimbabwe. The selected contractor would manage the Center’s international election observation mission including electoral and political reporting, office management and administration, security, and coordination of the deployment of long-term and short-term observers. The independent contractor position would be assigned for a minimum of four months, and could be extended pending availability of funds and a possible runoff. Core team deployment is June 1. The position requires relocation to Zimbabwe in June and involve travel within the country. 


  • The Field Office Director (FOD) works in close conjunction with the Atlanta-based project director and bears overall responsibility for programmatic, financial, personnel and operational aspects of the field office during the Center’s observation mission;
  • The FOD is the main political representative of the Center in Zimbabwe, and will develop and maintain relationships with Zimbabwean government, political parties, election officials, other observer missions, and other stakeholders;
  • The FOD will provide oversight of the Center’s field office in Harare, with the technology, staff and other capacities critical to the mission’s needs and timeline;
  • S/he is responsible for assuming a lead role in assessing and analyzing the political and electoral environment, contributing strategic advice to Center briefings and reports;
    • Acting as the Carter Center’s principal point of contact with the Zimbabwe Election Commission and the Government of Zimbabwe;
    • Meeting with political party representatives, NGO and civil society leaders, and representatives of other observer groups, in coordination with members of the observation mission, to share views on the electoral process.
  • The FOD will direct the planning for the mission’s deployment of observers and leadership, including briefing and orientation, in-country activities, and debrief prior to departure.
  • The FOD will oversee development of data collection and assessment tools, security protocols, and other technical aspects of programmatic implementation;
  • The FOD will work closely with the Security Manager and other core team members to prepare for the security of mission staff and observers, monitor conditions as they evolve, and take steps necessary to keep team members safe, including evacuation, if necessary.
  • In consultation with Atlanta and core staff, the FOD drafts Carter Center press releases, public statements, and project reports as necessary. S/he has lead responsibility and oversight for the drafting of preliminary findings and final report of the election observation mission.
  • S/he will have fiduciary oversight of the field office’s budgeting, financial tracking, and reporting to ensure appropriate use and monitoring of funds for the mission and field office
    • Maintain documents and records for all lease and service agreements;
    • Develop and enforce procurement procedures and maintain documents in accordance with Carter Center and donor guidelines (e.g. multiple quotes on equipment purchases);
    • Assist local accountant in preparing budget numbers, including observer deployment, especially management of deployment funds for accommodation, transportation and communication when observers change location or problems arise;
  • Oversee project funds in accordance with budget limitations and donor contract regulations
    • Assist observer coordinator in training observers on financial management of funds; and
    • Support Financial Analyst to disburse and reconcile observer deployment funds.


  1. Applicants should have 7-10 years of senior-level experience implementing election monitoring missions, democracy and governance programs, or conflict-prevention efforts, ideally in Zimbabwe or in sub-Saharan Africa, and/or countries in democratic transition;
  2. S/he will have demonstrated experience and/or knowledge of the Carter Center’s observation methodology, including international and regional standards for democratic elections;
  3. S/he will have proven experience in relevant leadership role(s) for international non-governmental organization, including establishment of field offices and managing required administrative procedures, personnel and programmatic activities;
  4. Leadership skills, cross-cultural understanding, and the ability to provide advice and guidance on mission management are required;
  5. Full English proficiency is essential; Shona desired though not required.

Please send cover letter, CV, contract requirements, dates of availability, and a list of references with subject line “Zimbabwe Field Office Director”:

Email application materials to

Applications must be received by May 11 though interested applicants are encouraged to submit their application materials as soon as possible; decisions will be made on a rolling basis from the deadline until the position is filled. As this is an international election observation mission, Zimbabwean nationals are not eligible to serve as core team members. Due to the large volume of applicants, only those candidates selected for an interview or additional consideration will be notified by the Center.