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We are hiring an engagement reporter for ProPublica Illinois.

ProPublica Illinois’ engagement reporter will operate in two lanes:

  1. You will help grow ProPublica’s Illinois’ audience. That means you will be doing smart social journalism — including distribution, social-first content creation and social strategy around project launches.
  2. You’ll be working on investigative projects in collaboration with traditional reporters throughout the full life-cycle of projects. You’ll be involved from the very beginning of story conception in order think about what communities and audiences we need to reach and how we can reach them. You’ll help find and reach an audience for the story, and you’ll be responsible for conceiving and executing any opportunities to bring readers into the reporting process itself.

Yes, you should know how to do a Twitter collection and why social video is important. But this job is about more than social media.

We’re looking for somebody who will find and reach the people actually impacted by a story, get them to inform our work and be a central player in the storytelling on all platforms to maximize the resonance of the project. The work can be as a low-tech as a flier, whatever is best for the story and project.

So what exactly are we talking about? Take a look at a project we’ve been doing about Vietnam vets exposed to Agent Orange. Unlike traditional investigations, we didn’t start with a story. We announced that we were doing an investigation with a callout to veterans. We asked vets to tell us their stories, and we’ve now heard from nearly 6,000 of them. This community has fueled our reporting, and it’s already getting results.

We’re also building audience on social with agile and social-first journalism. Here’s a tweetstorm on refugee vetting. Here’s a story we decided to do exclusively on social about lobbyist now working at an agency he lobbied.

Is all of that the kind of work you want to do? Here’s what we’re looking for:

  • A track record of organizing communities and audiences, especially in a journalistic context
  • Journalism experience itself, especially involving stories that shed light on injustices or covering marginalized communities
  • Experience managing social media accounts and creating social-first content
  • Experience using the various tools of the social web, such as surveys or forms for sourcing, texting or messaging platforms
  • Experience with social and website metrics, since you will be in charge of analyzing what’s working, what’s not, and what we should differently next time

We also know that great candidates can bring skills to ProPublica that we haven’t thought of, and who won’t fit everything we’ve described above. If this is you, don't hesitate to apply, and tell us what unique contributions you can offer.

We are dedicated to improving our newsroom, in part by better reflecting the people we cover. Therefore, ProPublica is committed to diversity and especially encourages members of underrepresented communities to apply, including women, people of color, LGBTQ people, and people with disabilities.

To apply, fill out this form. This is a full-time position, with competitive salary and benefits. It will be based in Chicago. And you will work closely with the engagement team in New York.

No phone calls, please.

Do you have questions? Email engagementjob@propublica.org.