Project Coordinators

Médecins Sans Frontières is looking for experienced coordinators for the positions of Project Coordinator (PC) or Head of Mission (HoM), who are available for at least one year with flexible start date and no preference for project location. A project coordinator is responsible for all aspects of our medical field projects. A Head of Mission is responsible for all aspects of our medical projects within a country.
The coordinator is part of the Country Management Team (CMT) that works in close collaboration with the Desk/HQ. The coordinator takes the lead in:
  • Project design and implementation
  • Project progress, evaluation, reorientation and closure
  • Team coordination and supervision
  • Team security
  • Information, communication and networking

All Australian and New Zealand field worker applications are processed through our Sydney office.

Responsibilities of the coordinator include operational management, human resources (HR) management, financial management, communication and representation of Médecins Sans Frontières to local authorities. The coordinator is also delegated responsibilities with regards to safety & security of all Médecins Sans Frontières staff in the project or country. The coordinator plays a key role in ensuring the quality & appropriateness of the project activities, implementation & evaluation of these activities, and bears witness to the fate of people facing humanitarian crisis. This contribution gives meaning to Médecins Sans Frontières social mission.

Tasks and activities of the coordinator include (but are not limited to):
  • Defines within the CMT (and with HQ) the strategy of the mission
  • Defines with the field team(s) the project objectives
  • Assures the follow-up and respect for the mission/project objectives by the managers of the different Médecins Sans Frontières activities – medical, logistics and administrative activities
  • Stays alert to any humanitarian needs in the country/project and submits new proposals for interventions
  • Briefs new arrivals and debriefs departing staff on the political, contextual, programmatic and overall functioning of the mission/project
  • Maintains, explains and defends the principles of Médecins Sans Frontières to the national staff, the population, the authorities and other partners
  • Builds good contacts with medical, civil and military authorities, other NGOs & UN agencies


  • Minimum of 3 years recent experience as an expatriate working in field projects, at least 1 year of which was in a field management position within an international humanitarian and/or emergency organisation
  • Minimum of 2 assignments in 2 different contexts in developing countries – e.g. (1) insecure context and (2) emergency response situation
  • Positive understanding of Médecins Sans Frontières principles & programs and able to represent the organisation with (inter)national counterparts
  • Positive understanding of Médecins Sans Frontières’ medical activities and related issues (medical knowledge)
  • Capability for initiative in identifying humanitarian issues of interest to Médecins Sans Frontières (exploratory activities, development of new projects, project closures)
  • Analytical, strategic thinking skills; capacity to develop an operational vision over the short and medium term
  • Previous experience in project (cycle) management in an NGO or development context
  • Ability to work well as part of a multi-cultural and multi-disciplinary team
  • Ability to organize and prioritize workload, using initiative when appropriate
  • Ability to take responsibility for delegated security management
  • Proven negotiation and problem solving skills
  • Demonstrated HR management experience in supervising, managing/coaching and training a team with more than 10 staff members
  • Positive public communication skills (presentation, meetings, etc)
  • Adaptability & flexibility
  • Ability to work in French and English
  • Availability to work in field for a minimum of 1 year with flexible start date


  • Availability to work in field for 2 years
  • Fluent in a third language such as Arabic, Spanish, Portuguese, Russian.
  • Public Health background/knowledge
  • Previous experience in an International Medical organisation
  • Strong Human Resource management experience
  • Knowledge and understanding of current humanitarian issues
  • Willingness to work in unstable environments


The essential criteria is an overview of the minimum requirements for international staff. Please note, these can change without prior notice in response to organisational needs. To work overseas with MSF, every applicant must meet the following requirements:

Work in a diverse team

The ability to work and live in multicultural and multidisciplinary teams in contexts that are often complex, unstable and isolated, requiring strict respect for the local culture, teams and security rules in force.

Experience working in remote, low resource and low tech settings

Clinical/working experience in environments with limited human resources, materials and equipment.  Access to electricity can be unreliable, running water may not be available, medical and other equipment may be in short supply and computer systems may be basic.

Management experience

Most assignments will involve supervision or management of teams and will require experience in: capacity building, training, planning and administration and performance management.

Commitment to the goals and values of MSF

Adhere to the MSF Charter and to our managerial values: Respect, Transparency, Integrity, Accountability, Trust and Empowerment.

Commitment to a career with MSF

Commitment for 2+ assignments. We are looking for people that want to commit to multiple assignments and a long-term career in humanitarian aid. Hiring and training an employee is a major investment for MSF and we want to hire international staff who want to grow within the organisation. 

Ability to cope with stress

Many MSF projects are located in or near conflict areas. The environment is often chaotic and you will face various challenges. International staff must be able to cope with stress in a difficult and unpredictable environment.                   

Flexibility and adaptability

Contexts, environments, team composition can change quickly. Flexibility and adaptability are critical for a successful MSF assignment.

Work independently and use initiative

MSF assignments are demanding and every staff member must be able to manage their responsibilities and workload in a professional manner, with minimum direction.     


Language skills

Knowledge of French or Spanish, or willing to learn. 
Other languages including Portuguese, Russian or Arabic are an asset.


  • Watch the logisticians webinar to find out more about the role of a logistician from three experienced panelists.
  • To learn about living allowances for project workers, visit salary, benefits and opportunities
  • If you're interested in staying up-to-date with our recruitment needs, register for the recruitment news to find out which roles we’re hiring for and when our events and webinars are.


Please apply if your skills and experience match the requirements for this role and the essential criteria for all international staff, listed above. Allow approximately 1 hour to complete to application.

Before starting the application, please prepare the following:

1. CV 
2. Motivation letter 

Use our guide on how to write a CV to help you prepare your application.

Meet some of our experienced coordinators