Vacancy advertisement – Editor-in-Chief for the South African Journal of Science

The Academy of Science of South Africa (ASSAf) is an independent statutory body of eminent South African scientists. ASSAf’s primary objective is to generate evidence-based solutions to the problems and challenges facing South African society.  ASSAf seeks to appoint an Editor-in-Chief for the South African Journal of Science.

 The South African Journal of Science ( is an open-access, multidisciplinary journal published bimonthly by ASSAf. The Journal’s mandate is to publish and promote the widest diversity of excellent South African research for the local and global academic community and inform policymakers and the public.

The Editor-in-Chief leads an editorial team of ten disciplinary-specialist Associate Editors who are responsible for managing the peer review of submissions in their disciplines. The Editor-in-Chief works closely with a full-time publishing team consisting of a Managing Editor and an Online Publishing Systems Administrator, led by the Director of Scholarly Publishing. The Editor-in-Chief reports to the Executive Officer of ASSAf and is accountable to the Editorial Advisory Board.

This part-time, three-year contract position requires regular hours per week (16 hours) with some flexibility. Candidates can be based anywhere in South Africa and are not expected to work from the ASSAf office. The successful applicant will be required to enter into a three-year Service Level Agreement with ASSAf. 


The Editor-in-Chief has overall responsibility for the editorial content of the journal – both scope and quality, and for the associate editors. 


  • Act as ambassador of the journal and represent the journal through all interactions with users and on committees, specifically ASSAf’s Committee on Scholarly Publishing and the Quest editorial board
  • Set and drive the strategy of the journal in collaboration with the publisher and Editorial Advisory Board
  • Actively promote and grow the journal and enhance the reputation of the journal
  • Determine and maintain editorial policies in conjunction with the publisher
  • Work with the publisher to market the journal
  • Lead the associate editor selection process, provide training/guidance to and oversight of associate editors; assign and balance review workloads
  • Actively solicit manuscripts and value-added content such as book reviews and news items
  • Oversee peer review and ensure continuous delivery of copy
  • Write the Leader, or solicit Guest Leaders, for each issue
  • Approve the final issue before publication
  • Uphold policies of the journal and act as arbiter on disputes, appeals and cases of unethical conduct and conflicts of interest
  • Review reports pertaining to metrics and performance
  • Call and chair annual Associate Editor meetings
  • Report on the journal to the Editorial Advisory Board

Professional attributes

  • Active researcher, well known and well regarded
  • PhD
  • Broad knowledge of the subject fields
  • Extensive networks across the subject fields
  • Strong publication record
  • Previous editorial experience, specifically in a decision-making capacity

 Personal attributes

  • Enthusiastic, energetic, highly motivated and committed
  • Effective communicator
  • Have a demonstrated vision for the journal and be able to communicate that vision
  • Strong time management skills
  • Strong leadership skills
  • Ability to work effectively in a team and with diverse viewpoints and approaches
  • Effectively delegate responsibility
  • Effectively resolve conflict
  • Firm decision-maker
  • Fair and discreet
  • Follow through promptly
  • Explore and embrace innovative technologies and future directions in scholarly publishing

For more information contact Ms Lynette du Plessis at 071 687 5241.

To apply, please submit a letter of application, a CV and the contact details of three references to Ms Lynette du Plessis at before 12 November 2020.

Correspondence will only be entered into with short-listed candidates.

ASSAf is an equal opportunity employer.