Current Anthropology Editor-in-Chief Search

The Wenner-Gren Foundation founded Current Anthropology in 1959 and continues to sponsor its publication through University of Chicago Press. Since the first issue appeared, Current Anthropology has been the major scholarly periodical in anthropology, covering all branches of the field and addressing a worldwide audience. It publishes major articles, reports, forums, and other content of interest. Major articles appear with “CA treatment,” the simultaneous publication of multiple commentaries along with the author’s reply, providing a forum for discussion and debate. The Wenner-Gren Foundation is committed to supporting publications that amplify the impact of anthropology by reaching new audiences and showcasing new voices. We are the founders of SAPIENS, a four-field magazine for broad publics, we provide financial support for Transforming Anthropology, a four-field journal that welcomes submissions from emerging scholars on questions of social justice. Current Anthropology plays an integral role in advancing this aspect of the Foundation’s mission.

Qualifications of the Editor-in-Chief

The new Editor-in-Chief will be a professional academic anthropologist who specializes in any of the four anthropological sub-disciplines. The Editor-in-Chief must, however, have a strong and demonstrated commitment to the broad and integrated nature of the journal. The Editor-in-Chief may be located anywhere in the world but must have a proficiency in English, the language of the journal.

The Wenner-Gren Foundation and the University of Chicago Press are also open to the possibility of alternative editorship arrangements for fulfilling this role, such as Co-Editors-in- Chief and/or the use of Associate Editors to handle manuscripts. The applicant should clearly outline their ideas for the editorship in their letter of intent and if a co-editorship is proposed the application should come from all potential Editors-in-Chief (see the Application Procedures below).

Term of Office and Compensation

The new Editor-in-Chief will begin to receive submissions and take full responsibility for the journal on January 1, 2025. The term is six years from January 1, 2025 through December 31, 2030, with a possibility of renewal for an additional partial or complete six-year term. The honorarium for the role of Editor-in-Chief is US $20,000 per annum. (If a Co-Editor-in-Chief model is proposed the annual US $20,000 honorarium will be shared among the Editors-in Chief.)

Additional funding is available for the role performed by Associate Editor(s), if applicable in your proposed model. The honorarium for an Associate Editor will be determined at a later date based on their level of involvement in the journal’s activities.

The Journal

Current Anthropology publishes six core issues a year and one open access supplementary issue. The supplementary issues report the output of Wenner-Gren Symposia and are edited through the Wenner-Gren offices in an entirely independent process. The Editor-in-Chief will only handle the six annual core issues of the journal.

Core Issues of Current Anthropology

Each core issue is approximately 160 pages in length and includes five-to-six major articles, along with reports, and other content. Current Anthropology is among the highest-ranked anthropology journals and in 2022 was the second-ranked anthropology journal according to Google Scholar Metrics. It receives around 230 manuscripts a year, of which approximately 50% receive full peer review and 10% are accepted.

Current Anthropology maintains its commitment to print as well as electronic publication. Articles destined for a particular issue are made available online Ahead-of-Print when they are ready.

Current Anthropology is a subscription journal that also has a commitment to open access publication. The Editor-in-Chief has the option to select one article for open access availability in each core issue of the journal. Green open access is provided for all articles, and Gold open access is available to authors who have qualifying funder requirements.

The journal also provides the option for online supplementary material, which may include information to enhance the meaning and significance of the published article (e.g. data, further description of methodology, additional photographs and video and/or audio clips, animations, etc.).

The University of Chicago Press and Current Anthropology use Editorial Manager to operate the online manuscript submission and review process. See the Current Anthropology website for more information about the journal, including general information for contributors and access to journal content.

Role of the Editor-in-Chief

The major role of the Editor-in-Chief is to maintain and enhance the position of Current Anthropology in the field and to assure its high academic standard. Specifically the Editor(s) will:

  1.  Encourage the submission of the best anthropological articles and be proactive in maintaining and increasing the number and range of contributions to the journal.
  2.  Assure that all manuscripts are appropriately peer-reviewed in a timely fashion, maintaining scrupulous ethical standards in accordance with norms and conventions of academic peer review, and adjudicating any conflicts involving contributors, reviewers, or others involved in the peer review process.
  3. Maintain the “CA treatment” of simultaneous publication of major articles with multiple commentaries along with the author’s reply and assure that commentaries are solicited from the widest international range of relevant anthropologists.
  4. Host an annual photo-essay competition and arrange for images by the winner to be featured on the journal’s front cover.
  5. Solicit and coordinate additional material that will be published as online supplements to the research articles.
  6. Maintain the variety of types of contribution to the journal and work with the Foundation and University of Chicago Press to develop future initiatives for the journal.
  7. Work closely with the University of Chicago Press and the CA Managing Editor based at the Press to assure timely and efficient publication of the journal, ensuring that the number of manuscripts accepted for publication matches the contractually established size of the journal, such that the queue of accepted manuscripts awaiting publication – and therefore the time to publication for authors — is as short as is practical and within the bounds of responsible best practice. The Chicago-based Managing Editor handles all practical aspects of administering peer review and publishing the paper and electronic editions of the journal.
  8. Use the University of Chicago Press online manuscript submission and review process (Editorial Manager).
  9. Work with the University of Chicago Press to prepare press releases for selected articles.
  10.  Attend the annual editorial meeting with the University of Chicago Press and the Foundation to review the state of the journal.
  11. Prepare an annual report by April 1 each year for presentation to the Wenner-Gren Board of Trustees at its spring meeting (normally the first Saturday in May).
  12. Serve on the Wenner-Gren Foundation’s academic Advisory Council and attend the Advisory Council meetings twice a year held in connection with the Board of Trustees meeting (normally the first Friday and Saturday in May and in November).

Support for the Editor-of-Chief

The following refers to the arrangements for a single Editor-in-Chief. Terms for alternative editorial arrangements would be by negotiation with the Wenner-Gren Foundation and University of Chicago Press.

  1. A full-time Managing Editor dedicated to Current Anthropology and located at the University of Chicago Press in Chicago. This person is the liaison between the Editor-in- Chief and the Press, handles all practical staff tasks of administering peer review, and is already in post.
  2. Travel to:
    • The annual CA editorial board meeting at the University of Chicago Press (Chicago) when held in-person.
    • Biannual Wenner-Gren Advisory Council meetings (normally but not always held in New York, NY).

Expenses Not Covered

  1. Salary and/or release time for the Editor.
  2. A computer and an Internet connection.
  3.  Rental of space for an Editorial Office.
  4.  Institutional overhead costs.

Application Procedure

To apply, the applicant should send the following by e-mail to the Chair of the CA Editorial Search Committee at There is no application form.

  1.  A complete curriculum vitae for each Editor-in-Chief,
  2.  Names and contact details of three academic references for each Editor-in-Chief and
  3.  A letter of interest (joint letter of interest if more than one Editor-in-Chief) that discusses:
    • The applicant’s vision for Current Anthropology,
    • The applicant’s qualifications and experience relevant to the position of Editor of anthropology’s highest profile broad-based journal, with attention to the practicalities of running peer review efficiently, fairly, and within the scope and expectations described above, and
    •  The proposed editorial arrangements for managing the journal.

Applications must be received by December 31, 2023.

Timetable for Appointment of the Editor

  1. Deadline for applications for the Editorship: December 31, 2023
  2. Short listing: January 2024
  3. Interviews in New York: March 2024
  4. Appointment of the new Editor: April 2024
  5. Transition meeting/s with UCP: Summer 2024
  6. The new Editor assumes full responsibility: January 1, 2025

Potential applicants are welcome to contact the following for further information:

Chair, CA Editor Search Committee ( Dr. Laurence Ralph, Editor Current Anthropology (