Two different approaches remain open to former MEPs wishing to apply for EU Election Observation Missions. The approach most likely to succeed is via your national Government. You will find the focal point list at the following address: http://ec.europa.eu/europeaid/applications/eom/index.cfm?fuseaction=c.show_focal_point_list
The second option is to apply directly to the European Commission which has introduced a system of online applications where candidates are invited to complete an electronic application form on the EuropeAid website: http://ec.europa.eu/europeaid/applications/eom/index.cfm?fuseaction=c.show_update_observer_cv
First selections are made by Member States which propose qualified national candidates for the positions of Long-Term or Short-Term Observers. The European Commission remains in charge of final selection but continues to maintain its special agreement with Member States by giving priority to candidates presented by their Ministries.
Because of this, applications for Election Observation Missions should ideally be sent directly to your Government as well as, or instead of, the Commission.
In fact, for some nationalities direct registration with the Commission will not result in selection. For example German and Swedish nationals have to be nominated by their Governments and registered with the national lists maintained by ZIF (Center for International Peace Operations -www.zif-berlin.org) and by Sida (Swedish International Development Cooperation - www.sida.se).
Finally, Core Team experts for missions are directly recruited by the Commission. These experts are recruited for a period from 3 to 4 months on the bases of a service contract. These positions are published on the EuropeAid website and require either previous experience in observation missions or special skills and knowledge.
We would be grateful if you could send to us, at our address in Brussels, a copy of any application you submit so that we can maintain our own files of Former MEPs interested in taking part in Election Observation Missions. This file will then be used in any future discussions we may have on your behalf with the Commission and the European Parliament, which, as many of you know, occasionally organises its own election Observation Missions.
EU AND THE ELECTION OBSERVATION ACTIVITY
In 2013 the EU will celebrate the 20th anniversary of the first EU election observation activity, which started with an ad hoc election mission to the Russian Federation Duma elections in 1993. Since then the EU has conducted more than 100 Election Observation Missions (EOMs), financed many technical assistance projects for delivering credible elections and supported civil society groups worldwide to inform voters and safeguard their election processes.
The first Network for Enhanced Electoral and Democratic Support (NEEDS) project was launched in 2001, followed by NEEDS II and NEEDS III, the latter finishing at the end of 2012. Based upon the success of this programme the Service for Foreign Policy Instruments (FPI) of the European Commission (EC) launched a tender to enable the continuation of the programme under the new name ‘Election Observation and Democratic Support (EODS)’.
Credible election observation requires to continuously improve the methodology for election observation, and this dynamic nature and constant improvement means that organisations involved in election observation continue to meet emerging challenges in the field. The EODS project reflects the fact that the EU continues to develop and further consolidate its own methodology, to remain at the forefront of international observation.
You may find further information about EODS here.