Vacancy: Politics & Society Editor (African Arguments)

  • Start date: Jan/Feb 2023 (with some flexibility)
  • Location: Africa; or London, UK
  • Contract: 5 days/week; fixed-term contract (renewed annually)
  • Salary: $35,000-40,000 per annum, based on experience
  • Deadline: 13 November 2022 (11:59pm)

African Arguments seeks a driven, passionate, and experienced editor to lead its coverage of politics, social issues, and culture. The Politics & Society Editor will have primary responsibility for driving the platform’s output on these key topics and will be entrusted with plenty of autonomy to shape African Argument’s reporting and analysis. The role offers a suitable candidate the opportunity to join a highly respected and widely read pan-African magazine and help determine its future.

The Politics & Society Editor will work alongside the Managing & Climate Change Editor and will be part of a broader team at the Royal African Society.

African Arguments

African Arguments is a pan-African platform for news, investigation and opinion. We seek to analyse issues facing the continent, investigate the stories that matter, and amplify a diversity of voices. While big news organisations break the news, African Arguments breaks down the news. We do this through our extensive network of journalists, researchers and commentators. We examine the major events making the headlines – adding much-needed nuance, complexity and context – while at the same time shining a light on under-covered issues some would rather were kept in the dark. We cover topics related to politics, economics, gender, the environment, culture, social affairs and much more.

African Arguments also provides a crucial and unique platform for predominantly African writers to reach a predominantly African, and international, audience. 80-90% of our articles are by authors of African descent, as are the majority of our 1-1.5 million readers.

African Arguments is a programme of the Royal African Society, a London-based membership organisation that provides opportunities for people to connect, celebrate and engage critically with a wide range of topics and ideas about Africa today.

Job Description

  • Keep up to date with current affairs and key debates across Africa
  • Build networks of journalists, researchers, and commentators across countries, regions, and topics
  • Respond promptly to pitches and submissions on wide variety of topics
  • Actively commission contributors to write original, timely and impactful articles
  • Fact-check and copy-edit articles, ensuring they meet African Arguments’ high editorial standards of accuracy and accessibility and its Africa-centred approach
  • Upload pieces on wordpress, including appropriate photographs/graphics and using best SEO practice
  • Publish about 12-15 engaging, original and high-quality articles per month
  • Promote finished pieces across social media channels
  • Manage small number of content partnerships with like-minded outlets and find opportunities for republications
  • Manage and plan commissioning budget; keep track of spending and invoicing, working with RAS admin manager
  • Strategise on the future direction of African Arguments alongside the Managing & Climate Change Editor, and help drive that vision
  • Identify fundraising opportunities and support Managing & Climate Change Editor and RAS fundraising manager on grant applications where appropriate
  • Support other RAS programmes and colleagues

Person Specification


  • Over three years’ experience in an editing role in journalism or closely-related field, with a focus on Africa
  • Demonstrable passion and deep knowledge of African politics, social issues, culture
  • Extensive knowledge of writers, media outlets, networks, research institutes working on Africa and/or key topics
  • Excellent ability to think critically, find original angles, and strategise
  • Fluency in English and excellent writing and copy-editing skills
  • Excellent project management and budgeting skills
  • Self-driven mindset and ability to work alone (and remotely)
  • Excellent interpersonal skills and ability to work as part of a small team
  • IT competence and experience of wordpress or other CMS
  • Good knowledge of social media platforms
  • Excellent ability to multi-task
  • Commitment to developing compassion, patience, open-mindedness, honesty in their work
  • Commitment to the values and ethos of African Arguments
  • The right to work where they are based


  • Proficiency in other widely spoken African languages (e.g. French, Swahili, Arabic, Portuguese)
  • Existing networks of contributors, journalists, and contacts
  • Familiarity with academic ways of writing and experience working with academics
  • Experience of being a journalist in Africa/deep knowledge of challenges faced by reporters

How to apply

To apply, please send your CV with a cover letter outlining why you are suitable for this position to James Wan at [email protected].

The cover letter should not be more than 1,000 words long. It should demonstrate your suitability for the job, why you are interested in it, and what you would bring to the role. Among other things, the cover letter is an opportunity for you to demonstrate your clear, succinct and persuasive writing abilities.

The closing date for applications is 11:59pm on Sunday, 13 November 2022. If shortlisted, you will be notified by Friday 25 November. Interviews will be held in early-December.

(Due to the large number of applications we expect to receive, we will not be able to give feedback to unsuccessful candidates.)