Consultant Editor, Forests News CLOSED

Communication and External Relations

The Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR) is a nonprofit, global research organization dedicated to advancing human well-being, environmental conservation and equity.

We conduct research that enables more informed and equitable decision making about the use and management of tropical and sub-tropical forest landscapes. We help policy makers and practitioners shape effective policy, improve the management of tropical forests and address the needs and perspectives of people who depend on forests for their livelihoods. Our multidisciplinary approach considers the underlying drivers of deforestation and degradation which often lie outside the forestry sector: forces such as agriculture, infrastructure development, trade and investment policies and law enforcement.

CIFOR is looking for a

Consultant Editor, Forests News


The Editor, Forests News, is responsible for the day-to-day running of Forests News, the blog of the Center International Forestry Research (CIFOR), from editorial planning and commissioning through to copyediting and posting.
This full-time consultancy is an opportunity for a skilled, energetic and creative science writer/copyeditor to run and shape an established, respected online news site.
Forests News is the cornerstone of CIFOR's communications strategy. It is run as a virtual news service, primarily reporting new research findings in language accessible to a broad readership, while maintaining scientific accuracy and a strong journalistic style and principles.
Articles are written by consultant science writers working remotely, by CIFOR scientists and associates around the world, and by in-house science writers. Most are also translated into French, Spanish and/or Indonesian.
In just a few years, Forests News has become a crucial resource for researchers, journalists, policy-makers, development practitioners, environmentalists and students, and has amplified the reach of CIFOR's work like no other medium.
Key to its success are the quality and accessibility of the writing, the strong scientific base, and the volume of stories published (at least 3/week).
The Editor will support its ongoing success through his/her experience in journalism, flair for writing catchy headlines and compelling leads, ability to spot and fix story flaws, genuine interest in science, environment and development, fresh ideas, and a whole lot of energy and spirit. The Editor will work independently and exercise autonomy, with guidance from management.

Duties and responsibilities

The Editor, Forests News, is responsible for the day-to-day running of CIFOR's central English-language blog, maintaining high editorial standards and scientific accuracy, under the editorial guidance of the Editorial Manager and the strategic guidance of the Outreach Manager.

• In collaboration with the Outreach Manager and the Editorial Manager, identify research for reporting, come up with story angles and ideas, and plan the editorial calendar.
• Commission articles and multimedia from consultant (freelance) science writers working remotely.
• Work with CIFOR scientists to develop expert analysis articles.
• Copyedit articles written by consultant science writers and scientists, according to Forests News editorial style and standards.
• Write articles, conduct video interviews, and contribute to other multimedia products.
• Write headlines, standfirsts and leads.
• Find photographs to go with articles.
• Post articles, photos and multimedia to the blog, according to the editorial plan, and curate packages of new and older stories as necessary.
• Liaise with social media officer for promoting posts through social media channels.
• Prepare the monthly News Update, in collaboration with the Outreach Manager and Editorial Manager.
• In collaboration with CIFOR staff, generate ideas for articles and stories on climate change and forestry for publication online and elsewhere
• Attend conferences and field research sites in Africa, Asia and Latin America, as required, and contribute content for Forests News.
• Other writing or editing tasks relevant to CIFOR's mission as requested by ICG management.

Education, knowledge and experience

• University degree in a related discipline (communications, journalism, science, development, international relations, environment, etc.)
• At least 8 years' experience in science writing and editing, including involvement in running a website.
• Fluency in English (flawless idiomatic written English). Other major languages will be an advantage.

Personal Attributes and Competencies

• Be interested in science and environmental literature and issues – someone who genuinely enjoys engaging with scientists and the topics they research.
• Have a passion for storytelling, connecting with audiences, and communicating science.
• Be skilled at copyediting other journalists' work, able to rewrite a clumsy or jargon-filled sentence, fix structure, and spot a typo at 20 paces.
• Have a flair for writing catchy headlines, compelling standfirsts and intriguing leads.
• Be a skilled journalist, who can spot a great angle and tell a strong story.
• Have a good understanding of the complementary use of photos, text and multimedia.
• Be able to work independently and be self-directed.
• Have experience in using WordPress and understanding of how social media works.
• Be able to maintain the publishing pipeline, with a large number of stories on the go at any time, and be organized yet flexible in adapting to changing circumstances.
• Be able to come up with and develop ideas for communicating science for impact, and be open to and excited by new possibilities.

Terms and Conditions

• This is a consultancy position. CIFOR offers competitive remuneration commensurate with skills and experience.
• The appointment will be for a period of twelve months.
• The duty station will be at CIFOR HQ in Bogor, Indonesia.

Application process

The application deadline is 15 Oct-2015.
We will acknowledge all applications, but will contact only short-listed candidates.