Do you want to help debunk climate change misinformation across Africa?
Code for Africa (CfA) has an immediate vacancy for a Climate Fact-Checker based in Kenya, Nigeria, Senegal, or South Africa, to join our PesaCheck team.
PesaCheck is the continent’s largest indigenous fact-checking initiative, by geographic coverage, with teams in 13 African countries. It researches and debunks misinformation published both online and elsewhere in more traditional media, publishing over 2,000 fact-checks per year, in partnership with major platforms ranging from Facebook and TikTok, to traditional media. PesaCheck also tracks promises by public officials and shines a light on public finances to ensure the public is not misled. PesaCheck forms part of Code for Africa (CfA), which is Africa’s largest non-profit digital/data journalism initiative.
The successful candidate will work as part of a multinational and multilingual team using digital collaboration tools to create content for a global audience and international media partners.
Required: minimum requirements include:
- 3+ years proven experience in journalism or research on a climate desk
- Excellent research skills
- Excellent numeracy and analytical skills, and the ability to break down complex issues and explain them in a way that any audience can understand
- Excellent written and verbal skills
- The ability to handle large volumes of work within a limited time period and deliver consistent results within deadlines
- An eye for accuracy and truth and a nose for news
- Top-notch news literacy, and a well-honed nonsense detector
- Critical thinking skills
Preferred: candidates who are able to demonstrate the following will have an advantage:
- Work experience in transnational multilingual digital newsrooms.
- An understanding of fact-checking, disinformation and misinformation, and digital tools for fact-checking
- Familiarity with mining and handling large datasets
- Strong decision-making skills
- Amazing presentation skills
Language and Location Requirements:
- Location: CfA has labs located in Kenya, Nigeria, Senegal, South Africa, Tanzania and Uganda. However the role can be performed remotely, and applicants across Africa will therefore be considered.
- Languages: English
- Preferred but not required: Fluency in French or Swahili and/or or any other major language spoken in Africa.
About the Role:
The successful candidates will join PesaCheck’s transnational fact-checking team working as part of a network of locally-based fact-checkers in 13 African countries. The team is responsible for helping the public separate fact from fiction, using a range of journalistic techniques and digital verification tools. PesaCheck is kickstarting a new African Wikipedia Task Force on Climate Disinformation to debunk climate denialism/delayism and coordinated disinformation influence campaigns by lobbyists or other malign actors in the run-up to COP27 in Egypt. The initiative will be driven by a team of dedicated Wikipedians-in-Residence (WiR), who will be embedded with partner newsrooms in the 20 country African Fact-Checking Alliance (AFCA) with technical support from Code for Africa’s (CfA) iLAB the Institute for Strategic Dialogue’s (ISD) joint forensic analysis team and tools.
Your core duty is to produce fact-checks, investigating questionable content on social media, in mainstream media and utterances/claims by public figures related to climate change. You will also, from time to time, collaborate with PesaCheck media partners and/or Code for Africa’s digital innovation teams on other special projects.
The fact-checks you produce will be published on Pesacheck.org, and which may be syndicated into other partner media. The articles will be used by Wikipedia, Facebook and other technology platforms to help detect misinformation on social media.
Responsibilities: Your daily responsibilities will include:
- Proactively monitoring a variety of local/regional public sources, ranging from mainstream media to social media and chat apps, to detect possible instances of misleading or malign content related to climate.
- Producing ‘explainer articles’ that outline why a specific public statement/manuscript has been classified as misinformation or another form of malign content. Your articles will be based on substantive desktop research and interviews, accurately distilling relevant information into explanations that are easily understandable by ‘ordinary’ audiences, and that are substantiated by tangible evidence explaining how you arrived at your findings
- Research to stay abreast of the climate landscape
- Research the latest trends and industry standards around verification and fact-checking to ensure that the fact-checking team is ahead of the curve, and use this information to assist the managing editor to review and document best practices for the benefit of the fact-checking team
- Attend workshops and conferences as a speaker, or facilitator.
What We Offer:
- A competitive salary, subject to experience, with opportunities for performance-based growth, both in terms of career path and public stature.
- A dynamic workplace, with a transnational team, occasional international travel, and generous vacation benefits.
- Ongoing opportunities to learn new cutting-edge skills and techniques/technologies to future-proof yourself in a rapidly evolving industry.
- A chance to shine on a global stage, writing for international audiences and interacting with colleagues around the world.
How to apply:
Please fill in this form by 31 May 2022. Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis.
Code for Africa (CfA) is the continent’s largest network of indigenous African civic technology and investigative data journalism laboratories, with over 70 staff in 19 countries, who build digital democracy solutions that are intended to give citizens unfettered access to actionable information that empowers them to make informed decisions and that strengthen civic engagement for improved public governance and accountability.
This includes building infrastructure such as the continent’s largest open data portal, open.AFRICA, and largest open source civic software portal, commons.AFRICA, as well as the largest repository of investigative document-based evidence, source.AFRICA, as well as incubating initiatives as diverse as the africanDRONE network that gives citizens their own ‘eyes in the sky’, the PesaCheck fact-checking initiative in 12 African countries, and the sensors.AFRICA remote-sensing citizen science initiative to combat air/water pollution.
CfA also incubates the African Network of Centres for Investigative Reporting (ANCIR), as an association of the continent’s best investigative newsrooms, ranging from large traditional mainstream media to smaller specialist units. ANCIR member newsrooms investigate crooked politicians, organised crime and big business. The iLAB is ANCIR’s in-house digital forensic unit, with teams in east, south and west Africa. ANCIR uses its resources to strengthen newsrooms’ own internal capacity, by providing access to the world’s best whistleblower encryption and investigative semantic analysis technologies, as well as skills development, and seed grants for cross-border collaboration.
At CfA, we don’t just accept differences – we celebrate it, we support it, and we thrive on it for the benefit of our employees, our products and our community. CfA is proud to be an equal opportunity workplace and is an affirmative action employer. If you have a disability or special need that requires accommodation, please let us know.
To all recruitment agencies: CfA does not accept agency resumes. Please do not forward resumes to our employment application line, CfA employees or any other CfA contact. CfA is not responsible for any fees related to unsolicited resumes.