Rushdi Nackerdien, Regional Director, Africa
Elections and Crises Expertise
Rushdi Nackerdien has been involved in challenging elections environments across the African continent since 1994. He has managed and overseen elections in pressured and crisis-type contexts where institutional trust and the delivery of quality elections were vital. Adaptive programming is a key aspect of election management under pressure, but so is the adherence to global principles and respect for voters’ safety and choices. During his career, which includes many years working with election management bodies, he has pioneered online approaches to elections learning that are responsive to pressing needs, such as crisis or resource-starved contexts. At the International Foundation for Electoral Systems (IFES), he has overseen programming in which multipurpose civic education centers strengthened public education about Ebola in places such as Guinea. During the current COVID-19 crisis, he is bringing his knowledge and expertise of practical on-the-ground programming to bear on preparing for postponed elections, while at the same time guiding processes to move to online learning in contexts that have traditionally relied heavily on face-to-face classroom environments.
Rushdi Nackerdien is IFES' regional director for Africa. With more than 20 years of experience in democracy and elections, Nackerdien is an experienced and visionary project manager who has led and pioneered complex international and national programs. He brings his collaborative approach and learning to diverse teams in multiple cultures, ensuring that programs meet and exceed their business objectives on time and within budget. His work always seeks to uplift and empower stakeholders in their implementation, as he is an experienced facilitator who focuses on both the process as well as the outcome. His passion for work on the African continent, without losing a global perspective, has inspired important advances wherever he has worked.
He was a founding member of the Electoral Leadership Institute. Nackerdien has focused on electoral reform, capacity development, strategic planning, project and program evaluation, and expert advice in elections and development of e-learning materials with a special focus on Africa. He has guided the African Union in revising their election observation approach to incorporate a more comprehensive long-term framework. Nackerdien previously occupied the role of senior program officer for electoral processes at International IDEA. He has worked in a number of countries including Senegal, Ghana, Nigeria, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, South Sudan, Ethiopia, Kenya, Tanzania, Malawi, Zambia, Namibia, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Lesotho, South Africa and Egypt. He holds a master's degree from the University of Cape Town.