Writer/Editor, Social Trends
- Full Time
Pew Research Center is a nonpartisan fact tank that informs the public about the issues, attitudes and trends shaping America and the world. It conducts public opinion polling, demographic research, media content analysis and other empirical social science research in the areas of U.S. politics and policy views; media and journalism; internet and technology; science and society; religion and public life; Hispanic trends; global attitudes and U.S. social and demographic trends. Pew Research Center does not take policy positions. It is a subsidiary of The Pew Charitable Trusts. The Center’s work is carried out by a staff of about 160.
The writer/editor is a position within the Pew Research Center’s Social & Demographic Trends research team, which studies behaviors and attitudes of Americans in key realms of daily life. Core topics include generations and aging; race and ethnicity; gender, work, marriage and family; U.S. population trends; and economics and personal finances.
The writer/editor is responsible for writing and editing a mix of comprehensive, lengthy research reports and shorter analyses of research findings, including some data-driven blog posts. The Writer/Editor will be “embedded” with a team of researchers and work collaboratively with them to choose key research questions for investigation; identify important findings; synthesize findings into broader themes or storylines; evaluate drafts of research reports to determine whether there are shortcomings in the analysis and/or organization; edit, rewrite and reorganize drafts as necessary to improve flow and clarity; and ensure that the text is accompanied by appropriate charts and tables. They also will help researchers to generate ideas for data visualizations and interactive features. Following the release of major reports, they may help to present the research to the public through interviews, speeches and briefings, adhering to the Center’s non-partisan, non-advocacy stance while building a personal reputation for impartial analysis and expertise on particular subjects.
The writer/editor will demonstrate great care in the use and presentation of data, as well as the ability to publish quickly while ensuring the highest level of accuracy. They have a demonstrated understanding of social and demographic trends and good editorial judgment, as well as a clear, engaging writing style. Candidates with more extensive experience or exceptionally strong qualifications may be considered for appointment at the Senior Writer/Editor level. This position reports to the Director of Social & Demographic Trends Research.
Editing and Writing (90%)
- Edits lengthy reports, as well as shorter supplementary reports, based on surveys, demographic research, and analysis of various “big data” sources.
- For some reports, develops an outline and assumes primary responsibility for writing the document, based on survey data, demographic data, coding data or other data produced by highly-qualified researchers. For other reports, drafts a chapter, section or sidebar as assigned by the research director or associate director.
- Develops ideas for and edits shorter, timely analyses or blog posts based on social trends research that provide context for news events and emerging issues of public interest.
- Steps in as needed to edit/critique reports and blog posts drafted by others on the social trends project’s staff.
- Performs other writing and editing duties, as necessary.
- Ensures that all publications meet the high research, editorial and non-advocacy standards of the Pew Research Center.
Related Responsibilities (10%)
- Trains and serves as a resource to researchers on writing for general audiences.
- Works with the communications and Web teams to effectively disseminate research.
- Works with research, editorial and Web teams to conceptualize and develop interactive Web presentations of quantitative data from research projects.
- Works in concert with others across Pew Research to pursue the Center’s larger digital strategy in growing its audiences.
- Bachelor’s degree in journalism, communications, the social sciences or related field
- Training or experience in studying demographic and survey data from a social science framework preferred
- Minimum of 5 years’ experience in journalism or related field required
- Demonstrated experience as a clean and clear writer who can work with quantitative material, conceptualize it at a high level and write about it for a broad audience
- Familiarity with the latest digital journalism tools
- Superior editing and writing skills
- Ability to translate quantitative research findings into non-academic, clear prose and graphics
- Familiarity with statistics and quantitative research methods
- Broad knowledge of the field of social and demographic trends
- Excellent news judgment
- Ability to balance multiple priorities
- Ability to ensure high editorial and research standards while meeting tight deadlines
- Knowledge of AP style
- Ability to work well in a collaborative and team-oriented environment
FLSA Status: Exempt
Applicant should apply electronically and include a résumé, and cover letter. The Pew Research Center is an equal opportunity employer, committed to a diverse and inclusive workplace. Pew considers qualified applicants for employment without regard to age, sex, ethnicity, religion, disability, marital status, sexual orientation or gender identity, military/veteran status, or any other basis prohibited by applicable law.