Lusaka, Zambia, Full Time
Panos Institute Southern Africa (PSAf) is a Lusaka based non-profit, non-governmental and evidence-based media advocacy and communication for development organisation that uses innovative communication methodologies to amplify voices of the poor and marginalized to advance social change and foster social accountability. PSAf advances social change and social accountability by promoting informed and inclusive participation of marginalised people in governance and development processes by creating opportunities and platforms for informed and inclusive dialogue.
Through financial and technical support from the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in Zambia and the Brussels based Electoral Taskforce, PSAf is implementing the iVerify Zambia Fact Checking and Response Mechanism, a technology-based initiative to identify and respond to misinformation, disinformation and hate speech. The initiative is anchored on an artificial intelligence platform to streamline reporting, analysis and responses to mis/disinformation and hate speech. The iVerify Zambia Mechanism seeks to contribute towards strengthening independent and responsible media reporting by countering misinformation, disinformation and hate speech by strengthening the national capacity to identify and document cases of disinformation, misinformation and hate speech; analysing and fact-checking news information at local level; and activating or facilitating remedial response through counter-messaging or regulatory decisions.
To that effect, PSAf is looking for a suitably qualified Zambia-based candidate to be engaged as Editorial Coordinator for the iVerify Zambia Fact Checking and Response Mechanism, with the following responsibilities:
The purpose of the role is to provide editorial oversight and coordinate the day the day-to-day planning and implementation of activities in the fact checking and response mechanism, using set tools and channels. Reporting to the Programmes Manager and working closely with the Executive Director, the specific roles of the Editorial Coordinator will be to:
Lead the development and implementation of pre-bunking and de-bunking strategies, including the development and distribution of counter-messages.
Edit, repackage and facilitate the production of timely, accurate, relevant and engaging fact check reports in compliance with journalistic standards.
Liaise with the response team and Panos Management in coordinating the Fact Checking Unit’s relationship with the media and other partners, including but not limited to the content platforms (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, WhatsApp, etc), statutory bodies, civil society and the private sector.
Supervise the identification, collection, collation and processing of suspicious, harmful and misleading content from the project platforms, including but not limited to: SMS, i-Verify online platform, social media platforms, newspapers, radio, television, email, observer reports, phone ins, stakeholder reports.
Supervise fact checkers’ regular and systematic verification of all identified facts with relevant stakeholders and trusted sources;
Triangulate and validate referenced data, including but not limited to reports, photos, videos, surveys;
Facilitate the development and use of training materials for fact checkers, journalists and partners
Conduct editorial trainings and provide regular guidance to fact checkers, field reporters and other stakeholders on content and approaches;
Update databases of sensitive accounts and news sources, narratives and artifacts;
Participate in brainstorming and idea planning sessions with the fact checking team, Panos management and partners;
Facilitate the mainstreaming of fact checking across Panos programmes and projects;
Carry out any other tasks as assigned by the PSAf management and the project technical team.
Skills and competence:
High and demonstrated writing, editing and analytical competences;
High computer literacy;
Strong digital investigation skills;
Demonstrated experience in digital verification techniques and tools;
Strong writing and editing skills and solid news judgement are a must;
Good interpersonal communication (written and oral) and influencing skills;
Ability to produce reports and present solutions;
Knowledge of and good contacts in Zambia’s community, mainstream and online media;
Knowledge of Zambia’s socio, political and economic context and environment and its potential impact on the upcoming elections;
Knowledge and experience with electoral developments and trends in Zambia would be a plus
Understanding of the electoral cycle approach to election monitoring, and observation would be a plus;
Ability and experience coverage of elections;
Ability to work under pressure and quick turn-around time frames;
Experience in team management and team leadership;
Ability to work independently to troubleshoot, perform root cause analysis, identify and isolate technical issues.
A minimum of a Diploma in Journalism; Media Studies; Information Technology; Communication; Information Systems Management or equivalent. A degree or other higher qualification would be an added advantage.
Minimum three years post qualification working experience in a related field.
Experience in investigative journalism, feature writing and editorial leadership
Experience with and knowledge of Content Management Systems and relevant technological.
Experience in NGO or related programming will be an added advantage
Suitably qualified persons should send soft copies of their application letters, detailed CVs with traceable references, and copies of certificates to the Executive Director by email to: [email protected], or through postal/hand delivery to: The Executive Director, Panos Institute Southern Africa, P.O. Box 39163, Lusaka, Zambia.
All applications must be submitted. Applications must be clearly marked “Editorial Coordinator”. At least three samples of previous writings or productions should be attached to the application and will be considered during the review of applications.
The closing date for the receipt of applications is 25th April 2022, at 17:00hrs. Applications received after this date will not be accepted.
Only short-listed candidates will be contacted.