Senior Science Editor

National Geographic (Washington, D.C.)

Posted 1 month ago

Overview of the Company

National GeographicNational Geographic Partners LLC (NGP), a joint venture between Disney and the National Geographic Society, is committed to bringing the world premium science, adventure and exploration content across an unrivaled portfolio of media assets. NGP combines the global National Geographic television channels (National Geographic Channel, Nat Geo WILD, Nat Geo MUNDO, Nat Geo PEOPLE) with National Geographic’s media and consumer-oriented assets, including National Geographic magazines; National Geographic studios; related digital and social media platforms; books; maps; children’s media; and ancillary activities that include travel, global experiences and events, archival sales, licensing and e-commerce businesses. Furthering knowledge and understanding of our world has been the core purpose of National Geographic for 131 years, and now we are committed to going deeper, pushing boundaries, going further for our consumers … and reaching millions of people around the world in 172 countries and 43 languages every month as we do it. NGP returns 27 percent of our proceeds to the nonprofit National Geographic Society to fund work in the areas of science, exploration, conservation and education.


The Senior Science Editor will lead National Geographic’s coverage of the COVID-19 pandemic, creating original and enterprising stories that illuminate the science behind the disease, provide a deeper understanding of vaccines and treatments, and highlight the human toll of pandemics and other biomedical and scientific crises on diverse communities. For the duration of the coronavirus pandemic, this job will focus on health, biology, and genetics, but the editor will be able to work with colleagues on discoveries in astronomy, paleontology, geology, physical sciences, human origins, and other sciences. The Senior Editor may also work in tandem with the Environment Desk, and should be knowledgeable about climate change and how humans and nature are adapting; the scope and effects of pollution and impacts of fossil fuels; and the health and management of public lands. The Senior Editor will originate coverage of how discoveries and events affect our daily lives, and what they reveal about our world, contributing written content that is surprising, sensitive, and groundbreaking, and appears across platforms: our flagship print magazine, our digital webpages, our 148-million-followers Instagram page, and more. The candidate must have broad knowledge of how science works and strong interpersonal skills in collaborating on creating multimedia stories with other writers, editors, photo editors, and graphics editors.


The Senior Science Editor will help shape content that fulfills the mission of National Geographic to inform the public about scientific threats, discoveries, and solutions. Specifically, the successful candidate will:

  • Write, assign, and edit stories for National Geographic print and digital platforms by proposing, developing, and producing articles; evaluating proposals from writers, photographers, scientists, and project leaders; consulting with other divisions of National Geographic Partners, such as National Geographic Books and the National Geographic Channel cross-platform story development, as well with as the nonprofit National Geographic Society to work with NGS-supported scientists and explorers.
  • Work with writers, photo editors, photographers, and the graphics and design team on achieving excellence in comprehensive stories. Improve articles through revisions. Listen to input from Analytics, Audience Development, and Distribution teams to optimize how the content performs.
  • Be able to represent National Geographic at industry conferences or as a subject-matter expert in media appearances.


The ideal candidate will have extensive magazine or newspaper editorial experience, with a strong background in writing, editing, and story development and a broad knowledge of science and the environment.

The individual should possess most of the following qualifications and characteristics:

  • An undergraduate degree is required. A graduate degree is a plus;
  • Excellence in writing and line editing;
  • Ability to conceptualize original story ideas, including those with major visual or graphical components;
  • Experience working with documentary-style photography;
  • Cheerful unflappability under deadline and other pressures;
  • Ability to work cooperatively and collegially with multi-person story teams;
  • Ability to help recruit and retain talented staff and the best freelance writers;
  • Familiarity with or ability to learn SEO best practices, headlines, and analytics;
  • Flexibility for some story travel and public speaking.

We are an equal opportunity employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, gender identity, disability, protected veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law. We will consider for employment qualified applicants with criminal histories consistent with applicable law.

Apply here.

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