Positions in: Anywhere in Africa

Do you want to craft investigative research and analysis that helps African democracies thrive?

Code for Africa (CfA) has an immediate vacancy for a full-time News Editor to join our iLAB and investigative and forensic analysis team. This is a hybrid role that includes insights and report editing, story management and website content management. 

The successful candidate will join CfA’s transnational iLAB team. The iLAB supports the African Network of Centres for Investigative Reporting (ANCIR), a CfA initiative that brings together the continent’s best muckraking newsrooms to investigate crooked politicians, organised crime and big business. The iLAB spearheads investigations that individual ANCIR newsrooms are unable to tackle on their own. This includes forensic analysis of suspected digital disinformation campaigns or toxic content aimed at misleading citizens or triggering social discord or polarisation using hate speech or radicalisation, or other techniques. The team is multinational and multilingual that uses digital collaboration tools and machine intelligence toolkits to create reports and datasets for a global audience and international institutional partners. 

Candidates must have demonstrable experience managing a mainstream newsdesk, with proven success working on editorial initiatives that consistently produce high-quality and impactful content on tight deadlines. The News Editor’s primary international language will be English.

The ideal candidate must be able to write and edit crisply and cleanly and have excellent news judgement and rigorous analytical skills.  

The successful candidate will be responsible for iLAB’s newsdesk, supported by the managing editor and subs. This team manages a team of ~20 analysts, forensic researchers and writers who specialise in investigating coordinated behaviour, influence operations, and information manipulation. The News Editor reports to iLAB’s Managing Editor. 

Required: minimum requirements include

  • Minimum of ten years of newsdesk editorial management experience, preferably in a mainstream media or equivalent digital publishing environment.
  • Demonstrable understanding of the step-by-step production process for creating well-researched and substantiated insights, reports and news reports, including familiarity with editorial diaries/schedules, editorial workflow, and content assignment/deadline management.
  • Meticulous attention to detail, with the ability to work with congeniality in a deadline-driven environment. This includes being an organisational whiz who can prioritise multiple simultaneous tasks while at the same time having the people skills needed to engage diplomatically and collaborate effectively with colleagues under tight deadlines.
  • Robust critical thinking and strong research and investigative skills, with good general knowledge and interest in current affairs.
  • Excellent writing skills for creating clean and crisp content. 
  • Excellent communication skills, including presenting research insights and shaping research outputs.
  • The ability to collaborate with a diverse set of multidisciplinary project stakeholders.
  • Experience in working with remote, distributed teams with agile methodologies.
  • Proven track record for creative problem-solving in fast-paced impact-driven environments where solutions balance human and production considerations.
  • Demonstrable ability to self-manage, creating your own and wider team timelines and milestones with clear systems/processes.
  • Proficiency in collaborative work solutions such as Google Workplace (Google Docs, Slides, Sheets, etc.), Slack (or equivalents such as Teams), and project management tools like Trello (or equivalents).

Preferred: candidates who can demonstrate the following will have an advantage:

  • In-depth knowledge about ‘information disorder’ and the differences between misinformation and disinformation and mal-information, as well as conspiracist content and hate speech. 
  • Previous experience in online publishing, including social media platforms.

Language and Location Requirements:

  • Location: Anywhere in Africa 
  • Languages: English
  • Preferred but not required: Arabic, French, Swahili, or other major African languages.

About the Role:

The successful candidates will join CfA’s transnational iLAB digital forensic team to craft and manage the content production process and output for the iLAB team. 

As news editor, you will help shape the skills of other team members to enable them to become better writers and storytellers. You will guide the team to produce cutting-edge content, such as dossiers and short reports, that speak directly to the actions and advocacy needed. 

You will also track deadlines, interrogate findings from a journalist’s perspective and edit content from reports to investigative news stories. This means that you must be able to multitask in several different roles, including as a writer and an editor.

As part of a multinational team within a growing organisation, you must be agile and thrive in a multicultural environment. You will need to work easily with people from different backgrounds who may speak different languages.

Responsibilities: Your daily responsibilities will include:

  • You will manage the iLAB diary and deadlines for reports, insights, and online content for our online platforms, ensuring that it is delivered on time, is well-written and meets rigorous editorial standards. 
  • Managing the editorial production process and content diaries for the iLAB producing analytic and investigative reports.
  • Scheduling and running the weekly ‘insights diary’ used to shape iLAB reports and investigative outputs.
  • Ensuring that reports, briefing documents, presentations, news articles and social content are delivered on time by the relevant teams.
  • Ensuring that analytical and investigative outputs are aligned with organisational goals and lead to meaningful outcomes.
  • You will select and prioritise editorial leads for iLAB writers based on the analysts’ and forensic investigators’ trends and or algorithmic ‘listening’ or media monitoring tools to help ensure we focus our attention on the most harmful misinformation/conspiracies.
    You will facilitate editorial planning meetings at which editorial leads/assignments are brainstormed and allocated to in-country journalists/researchers, with clear editorial briefs and submission deadlines. 

What We Offer

  • A competitive salary, subject to experience, with opportunities for performance-based growth, both in terms of career path and public stature.
  • Medical insurance cover, underwritten by a remote-first provider to ensure cover wherever you are
  • 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 no later than 31 August 2023

About Us:

Code for Africa (CfA) is the continent’s largest network of indigenous African civic technology and investigative data journalism laboratories, with over 100 staff in 21 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.