Democracy Volunteers

Observing elections to improve democracy

Training 2018

Oxford Bridge of SighsLong Term Observer (LTO) and Core Team Training – University of Oxford 12th to 15th July 2018

For this certificated training event in July, we are now inviting applications for those wishing to attend our annual training at the University of Oxford. Housed for three nights, in one of the colleges of this world famous university you will be trained on how to improve your skills as an international and domestic election observer. This training is tailor-made for those who have conducted one or more short term observations and want to spend longer in the field as a Long Term Observer or as a member of a core team, which leads the observation mission. With experienced trainers, observers, academics and guest speakers you will learn how to manage an observation mission for yourself. You will also be allocated a personal mentor/tutor to help with the training whilst in college.

In 2018, Democracy Volunteers welcomes those who feel that this intensive course would enhance their skillset and hone their chances of joining longer, high-profile election observation missions.

What is included

Thursday 12th July – You will arrive in Oxford on the evening of the Thursday and settle into your accommodation at an Oxford college. Although the training is intensive the great advantage of staying in the confines of a college is that you have time to relax and meet the Democracy Volunteers team, and your fellow attendees, on the first evening.

Friday 13th July – In a quiet part of the college we conduct the first of two days of LTO training. Led by election experts and experienced LTOs you will learn how to develop the skills you have as a short term observer (STO) for longer deployments. The evening is free to enjoy dinner in Oxford and take a walk through the University Parks and other colleges. (Breakfast, Lunch and Morning and Afternoon Coffee/Tea included)

Saturday 14th July – The second day of LTO training will see you focusing on the necessary skills of team management and the details of deployment in the international context. You will learn how to deal with local electoral bodies, party interlocutors as well as the importance of translation services to your team. (Breakfast, Lunch, and Morning and Afternoon Coffee/Tea included)

Sunday 15th July – The final day of the course sees us build on the LTO training with the skills needed to be a member of the core team of a domestic or international observation. Whether you want to focus on media, political analysis or legal aspects of the election campaign we will be showing you what you need to know to help produce the interim and final report for an election observation mission and deal with national and local interest in the local media. We will depart from Oxford at approximately 5pm on the Sunday afternoon. (Breakfast, Lunch and Morning and Afternoon Coffee/Tea included) 

For all three nights you will stay in St. Anne’s College Oxford University, in single ensuite accommodation. The college is a short walk from the centre of Oxford and approximately 15 minutes on foot from  Oxford railway station. The college has its own private grounds and is just a minute’s walk from the University Parks.

What to do now

We anticipate that there will be a lot of interest in the course and we have very limited places available. Applications are only invited to Please email us with a brief CV of your election experience (no more than two sides of A4). We appreciate that many of those applying will be observers who already work with Democracy Volunteers, and of course you are encouraged to apply. We would, however, particularly like to encourage applications from women, younger observers (aged 18-30) and those outside the UK who would benefit from this training within their local/national domestic observation context. For those applicants who are women, unwaged or aged 18-30 we also intend to offer bursaries to assist with travel to the course and possibly with the cost of the course. Please state whether you would be interested in being considered for these bursaries when you apply.

To encourage applications we have been able to set a highly competitive  price for the training which has been set at £495 for unwaged/student attendees and £595 for others. Payment can be by bank transfer in Pounds Sterling or by Card Payment.

Closing Date for Applications is 12:00 BST on Friday 15th June. Once selected for the course payment will be required within 5 working days. We reserve the right to close applications early if the event is heavily over-subscribed.

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