ERIS in Cote d'Ivoire

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ERIS Annual Democracy Lecture

ERIS organises an annual lecture in solidarity with those working for democracy around the world. Read, watch and listen to previous lectures here.

Resources

View updated election calendars, recent election observer reports, key publications and more information on observing elections here>

Andrew Bruce

Andrew Bruce
Executive Director

Andrew Bruce became the Executive Director of Electoral Reform International Services (ERIS) in September 2012, following twelve years working for international organisations. Most recently, he served as a Political Affairs Officer in the UN Department of Political Affairs in New York, where he focused on developing UN policy on preventing and responding to election-related violence.

Prior to that, he served as a Policy Desk Officer in the Human Rights and Multilateral Relations Directorate of DG External Relations in the European Commission, based in Brussels, where he managed the deployment of EU election observation missions.

Before that, he served as an Election Adviser for the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe’s Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (OSCE/ODIHR), based in Warsaw, where he was responsible for managing the ODIHR’s election work in a number of OSCE participating States.

He started his career at ERIS in 1994, where, as the first full-time employee, he served as Programme Officer and Programme Manager, with responsibility for co-ordinating British election observation teams. Andrew co-edited the European Commission’s Handbook for European Union Election Observation and the OSCE/ODIHR Handbook for Domestic Election Observers. He holds an MA in Politics and Geography from the University of Edinburgh and an MSt in International Human Rights Law from the University of Oxford.

Mark Stevens

Mark Stevens
Director of Programmes/Deputy Executive Director

Mark Stevens has over 18 years experience in the field of electoral assistance and democracy promotion.  He joined ERIS in June 2013 as Director of Programmes / Deputy Executive Director. Mark leads ERIS’ programme teams in implementing projects, and provides support and advice to project teams in the field.

Prior to joining ERIS in 2013, Mark was Head of the Commonwealth Secretariat’s Democracy Section, managing the Commonwealth’s programmes of electoral assistance and election observation between 2007 and 2013. In this role Mark led on the establishment of the Commonwealth Electoral Network, which brings together and offers assistance to election management bodies across the Commonwealth.

Between 1997 and 2007, Mark worked for ERIS as a Director. During this time he led the NEEDS project on behalf of ERIS, leading on the delivery of election observation training programmes for the EU and contributing to the drafting and editing of the EU’s Election Observation Handbook and the Compendium of International Standards for Elections, among other publications.

Mark also regularly worked as an expert in the good governance and democratisation fields, with a specialisation on election observation, electoral needs assessments, election assistance, training and civil society development. During this period Mark also regularly led international election observation missions on behalf of the OSCE/ODIHR and the EU.

Joshua Oliech

Joshua Oliech
Director of Finance and Administration

Joshua Oliech, who has more than 15 years’ experience in financial management of UK and international not-for-profits, joined ERIS in June 2013 as Director of Finance and Administration. Joshua leads the finance and administration team and is responsible for ERIS’s strategic direction and long-term financial viability. Joshua has responsibility for the provision of finance and all resource services to ERIS, and is also Secretary to the ERIS Board of Directors.

Prior to joining ERIS, Joshua was Senior Officer and also the Head of Finance and Central Services of Voluntary Action Westminster (VAW). Joshua joined Voluntary Action Westminster in July 2008 as Head of Finance and Central Services and initiated the VAW enterprises, a consulting arm of VAW and had risen to become VAW’s Senior Officer by April 2013.

Between 2007 and 2008, Joshua was UK (and Brussels) Regional Finance Manager at Save the Children UK, where he worked with the UK Regional Director in the effective deployment and control of financial resources available to the region and implemented Save the Children’s fundraising and budgeting tool, known as the New Economics Model (NEMO).

Joshua trained and qualified as an accountant whilst working for Leonard Cheshire International, a leading UK disability charity, where Joshua was responsible for all overseas financial management and control. Joshua has lectured on financial management and reporting, and holds an MSc in Accounting with Finance and is a Fellow of the ACCA.

Kate Upshon

Kate Upshon
Yemen Project Director/Senior Programme Development Adviser

Kate manages ERIS's current three-year EU-funded programme supporting democratic transition in Yemen. She also advises on ERIS's programme development.

Kate is an elections expert who specialises in international standards and gender. She has participated in election observation missions in, inter alia, Afghanistan, Moldova, Pakistan, Spain and Yemen. Kate also has several years experience in the private sector and has worked for the European Commission External Relations service in the Human Rights and Democratisation unit, covering Asia and the Horn of Africa.

She has a Masters Degree in Human Rights, Humanitarian and Development Practice and graduate degrees in Law and French, and has conducted field research in Eritrea.

Holly Ruthrauff

Holly Ruthrauff
Brussels Representative

As ERIS's Brussels Representative, Holly represents ERIS vis-à-vis EU institutions and other organisations.  She also develops programmes and manages the Election Observation and Democratic Support (EODS) project on behalf of ERIS, which is a member of the EODS consortium. 

Holly has over 15 years’ experience in the field of election observation, having previously served as an Election Advisor for the OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR) and as Senior Program Officer for Elections at the National Democratic Institute for International Affairs (NDI).

She joins assessment missions, conducts observer trainings and has developed several election handbooks, most recently co-authoring the NDI/IFES guide Implementing and Overseeing Electronic Voting and Counting Technologies.

Holly has a MA in International Studies from the University of Washington and a BA in International Relations from Stanford University.

Meghan Brown

Meghan Brown
Team Leader/Programme Manager, Africa

Meghan manages ERIS' projects in sub-Saharan Africa.

Meghan previously worked in several capacities for the Canada Border Services Agency and spent a year working at Kandahar Airfield in Afghanistan.  She has also worked as a research intern with disarmament organisation VERTIC.

She holds an MSc in International Relations from LSE, a BA in International Studies (Security and Comparative Culture and Politics) from Simon Fraser University and a BSc in Chemistry from Queen’s University.

Meghan speaks English, French and Spanish.

Iwona Grzyb

Iwona Grzyb
Team Leader/Programme Manager, Middle East and North Africa

Iwona manages ERIS' projects in the Middle East and North Africa.

Since joining ERIS in April 2008, she has managed projects in countries including Egypt, Ethiopia and Libya. Her previous experience includes work for the Polish Foreign Ministry and international recruitment. She holds an MA in International Economic and Political Relations in the scope of European Studies from the Academy of Economics of Poznan, Poland and MA in International Relations from London Metropolitan University.

She speaks Polish, Russian, English and Spanish.

Email: iwona[at]eris.org.uk

Beata Matysiewicz

Beata Matysiewicz
Team Leader/Programme Manager, Asia, Pacific and Americas

Beata manages ERIS' projects in Asia and the rest of the world, including a multi-country project to improve civil society organisations' capacity to monitor campaign finance in Kyrgyzstan, Bolivia, Indonesia and Moldova.

She holds an MSc in Development Studies from SOAS University of London and an MA in International Relations from University of Warsaw.

Before joining ERIS in April 2010, she worked with project proposal development and implementation at the Centre for Social and Economic Research. She has also worked at UNDP and has been involved in a range of development projects.

Email: beata[at]eris.org.uk

Magnus Smidak

Magnus Smidak
Team Leader/Programme Manager, Europe

Magnus joined ERIS in 2012 and is the Project Manager for Election Observation, Training and Events.

Magnus previously worked for the International Centre for Parliamentary Studies where he helped to set up an independent advisory service on electoral reform with particular emphasis on Africa. Prior to this he served as the Research Officer to the Electoral Reform Society, working on a comparative research project on European democracies and policy research. His main areas of expertise are electoral systems and processes.

He holds a degree in History and Politics, and a Masters in International Peace & Security from Kings College London.

Alice Crabtree

Alice Crabtree
Programme Officer, Middle East and North Africa

Alice works with the Middle East and North Africa project team conducting research, and providing administrative and logistical support on the team's projects.

She has previously worked as a Researcher in Migration Studies at the Lebanese American University and in International Student Services in both the Middle East and Australia. Alice has also worked in different capacities for the Australian Federal Government, particularly in the field of international higher education.

She holds an MA in Middle Eastern Studies from the American University of Beirut, Lebanon and a BA in International Relations from the Australian National University, Canberra and speaks French and Arabic.

Eiman Elnaiem

Eiman Elnaiem
Programme Officer, Middle East and North Africa

Eiman oversees ERIS's projects across the Middle East and North Africa.

Eiman previously worked as a Research Assistant & Coordinator with the Investment Promotion Technical Assistance Program (ITAP) of the Islamic Development Bank (IDB) Group in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. She provided support in several high profile capacity building and country programs worldwide, focusing specifically in the field of investment promotion, trade and enterprise development.

She holds a joint BA degree in International Relations & Economics from the University of Reading and speaks Arabic fluently.

Joanna Oniszk

Joanna Oniszk
Finance Officer

Joanna works on ERIS's finance team, and has more than 10 years of experience in international organizations and the corporate world.

She joined ERIS in January 2014 after working for Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe/Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (OSCE/ODIHR) in the area of technical assistance to operations, budget planning and evaluation for activities related to the observation of elections across the OSCE area, mainly in Central Asia, Caucasus and Southern Europe.

Between 2002 and 2007 she gained corporate experience in the Middle East for a multinational consulting company in the area of financial planning, reporting and internal oversight. She holds a Masters’ degree in accounting and financial management.

Miguel A. Castaneda Forero

Miguel A. Castaneda Forero
Recruitment and Programme Officer, Europe

Miguel works on ERIS's Europe, Observation, Training and Events team, working mainly with the EC framework contracts, new business development opportunities and project implementation.

He has been working for over 2 years and a half at an international development consultancy firm a as project manager – both drafting technical proposals and implementing projects - for EuropeAid Technical Assistance projects for developing countries and for the Framework Contract of the European Training Foundation (ETF). He has also collaborated with different organisations for aid development cooperation, conflicts resolution and human rights in Venezuela, the Dominican Republic and Spain.

Miguel holds a degree in International Affairs and a Master’s Degree in International Cooperation and Co-development. He speaks English and Spanish.

George Evans

George Evans
Programme Officer, Africa

George joined ERIS in September 2012. He holds an MA in Conflict, Security and Development from King’s College London as well as a BA in philosophy. He has previously worked as a researcher for consultancies specialising in political risk, public policy advisement and financial services. He has a keen interest in peace building and the Latin American region. He speaks English and Spanish.

Thomas Oldham

Thomas Oldham
Programme Officer, Europe

Thomas has a varied research background along with an academic grounding in Africa’s politics and history. Prior to ERIS he was in Lebanon working with IFES on their Electoral Violence Risk Analysis report, and assisting a Northern Irish security consultancy with their projects in Beirut and the wider region.

He has worked for the Institute of Governance Studies – a BRAC think tank in Bangladesh, the Young Foundation and Climate Parliament

Francesca Varasano

Francesca Varasano
Recruitment and Programme Officer, Europe

Francesca works on ERIS's Europe, Observation, Training and Events team.

She has over 5 years of experience as Project Manager and Senior Project Manager at an international development consultancy, preparing proposals and implementing projects mainly for EuropeAid and EC Framework contracts in the Balkans and Former Soviet Union countries.

She has also worked as a Researcher on EU enlargement for the Italian Ministry of European Affairs and as an Adviser on EU funds to the office of a Member of the European Parliament. Previously, she worked for 1 year in Brussels for a network of civil society organisations, coordinating a capacity-building project in the Balkans, and at the Embassy of Italy in Tallinn, Estonia.

She holds a MA in International Relations with a focus on Eastern Europe and Russia.


Tom Walker
Programme Officer, Asia, Pacific and Americas

Tom Walker develops projects with ERIS's regional teams, and works on EU framework contracts, election observation and research.

Prior to joining ERIS, Tom worked for three years on Control Risks' Global Risk Analysis team, monitoring political developments across Asia and Africa and researching security, governance and operational issues in a wide range of countries (with a focus on South Asia). He has also worked in an editorial capacity for RUSI and openDemocracy, and for the Indian national newspaper the Statesman. He holds a Masters degree with Distinction from King's College London, specialising in international history.

Allen Mutoni

Allen Mutoni
Finance Officer

Allen is part of the ERIS finance team. She has extensive experience in the private and public sector in the area of finance and accounting, most recently working with Christian Aid.

Prior to that, she worked at the multinational printing company Toppan Printing Company UK Ltd and the Booksellers’ Association of the UK and Ireland. She holds a BA (Hons) in Accounting and Finance, and an MSc in International Finance from Kingston University.