News and politics reporter
About the position
Salary: £35,000 - £40,000
Contract: Full time employment contract
Reports to: Head of news
openDemocracy is hiring a news and politics reporter to play a key role in expanding its UK coverage, producing original journalism that centres voices sidelined by the mainstream media. You will have an eye on the national politics agenda to help inform your work and generate ideas, and the ability to work sensitively with contacts to earn their trust and tell their stories respectfully. You will work closely with the rest of openDemocracy with support and mentoring from the news desk, but you will be comfortable working independently, and will be motivated by creating change for people and communities across the UK with your journalism.
Purpose of the role & key responsibilities
- Pitch, research and write original news stories, features and investigations on a range of topics across openDemocracy, with a particular focus on elevating voices and communities that are sidelined and ignored by the rest of the mainstream press, and finding inclusive ways to report on (in particular) UK politics
- Develop and write stories commissioned by the head of news, the news and features editor or the editor-in-chief, including features, investigations and daily and breaking news stories
- Ensure copy is accurate, legally sound, and filed in house style
- Monitor the national news and politics agenda to identify areas for new stories, pegs for openDemocracy coverage or opportunities to cut through with original reporting on larger topics
- Attend Westminster lobby briefings on an ad hoc basis as necessary
- Work with the audience and development team and openDemocracy editors to ensure that stories reach wider audiences, and identify and pursue opportunities for multimedia content in own storytelling
- Develop and maintain a pipeline of news stories, including a diverse and up-to-date contacts book, links to specialist organisations and curated social media lists
- When necessary, collaborate with other media organisations for the purposes of joint investigations or generating impact.
- Develop, write and publish an average of three to five accurate, legally sound news articles per week, the majority of which should be exclusive outright, or contain exclusive angles and sources
- Ensure strong, ongoing sources of story ideas
- Produce at least one story a month that gets picked up in other media or cited in public life by a politician or national organisation.
- Source or generate original audio, video and images alongside written text or in isolation through openDemocracy’s social media accounts.
- Two years’ reporting experience on a local, regional or national newspaper or website
- NCTJ diploma or equivalent experience, including up-to-date knowledge of UK media law and public affairs, and interviewing and news writing skills
- Demonstrable experience of developing original contacts and elevating voices that are typically sidelined or ignored by mainstream media
- Demonstrable experience of breaking original stories that generate national attention
- Understanding of the UK media landscape
- Understanding of openDemocracy’s core values and the way we generate impact
How to apply
To apply for this role, please submit a CV and cover letter outlining your motivation and suitability for the role. In addition, your application should include three examples of stories you are particularly proud of, and which you would be happy to discuss at interview. We would particularly like to see examples of multimedia coverage alongside written copy.
The deadline is Sunday, 15 May 2022 at 23:59 GMT.
openDemocracy is committed to being an equal opportunities employer that values and respects the people who work with us. We positively encourage applications from suitably experienced candidates regardless of sex, race, disability, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, religion or belief, marital status, or pregnancy and maternity. We strongly encourage applications from groups that are underrepresented in the media.
openDemocracy is an independent international media platform. We produce high-quality journalism which challenges power, inspires change and builds leadership among groups underrepresented in the media. Headquartered in London, we have team members across four continents.
We are a mission-focused organisation, which means we always think about the impact our journalism can have. Our investigative journalism has triggered legal changes, parliamentary probes, lawsuits and criminal investigations and we also offer a rich diversity of stories and perspectives from across the world. We help voices otherwise excluded from the media to reach larger audiences, and we campaign on key stories, pushing for a more open, democratic and egalitarian world.
Our stories frequently get picked up across the global media, including The New York Times, CNN, France 24, El País, National Geographic, Sky News, ITV News, Newsnight, BBC Radio 4’s Today, The World This Weekend and File on Four, Daily Mail, Daily Express, Daily Mirror, Financial Times, The Times, Sunday Times, The Telegraph, The Guardian, The Observer, The Independent, Channel 4 News, LBC and Private Eye in 2021 alone.
openDemocracy.net attracts more than 11 million visits per year, and we provide a vital space for analysis, comment, and debate on issues ranging from democracy, gender and human rights to economics and climate change. We have projects publishing in Russian, Spanish and Portuguese as well as English. In the past two years, we’ve been nominated for and won a number of prestigious journalism prizes, from the Gabo Award to the Paul Foot and British Journalism Awards.