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We asked editors what they look for when hiring a foreign correspondent. Here’s what five top editors said:

Marcus Brauchli, executive editor, The Washington Post:
“I want someone who can step back and see the larger trends, including the geopolitical dynamics; a good writer; someone who can see around corners, anticipate forces and a way to get ahead of that; someone who can illustrate geopolitical tectonic shifts through the lives of people; speak languages and be completely self-reliant.”

Loren Jenkins, supervising senior editor at NPR’s foreign desk:
“Experience working or living abroad, vast curiosity, foreign languages are a plus, a knowledge or history of world affairs — knowing what makes the world go round, a willingness to risk his or her neck. Obviously I want someone who has traveled or worked abroad because they’ll have an understanding of how different the world is. Foreign languages aren’t required but certainly, if someone comes in here who speaks Chinese or Arabic, they have a leg up.” stations over your way, CNN, FOX, etc. for long running events we have reporters from here in other countries.

John Schildlovsky, veteran foreign correspondent and director of the International Reporting Project:
“I would look for a person with lots of curiosity, the ability to adapt to changing circumstances, someone with a genuine respect for other cultures, a person with lots of energy and the ability to remain calm in crises. I would also hire someone who respects other people enough to understand that the reporter is not, and should not be, the center of attention. Please do your readers, viewers or listeners a favor, and remember that your focus should be the country you are reporting on and the people in it. Not yourself.”

John Martin, executive editor for Street Rebuttal:
“I would look for individuals who had an intellectual curiosity that motivated them to move away from the customary ways to cover a story, and would strike out on their own to discover the news and stories from the ground up as much as possible. This entails having someone who is very smart and well read, and while they may have opinions of their own, still considers their role to be one of a conduit for a story and not leading the story or collecting only those individuals who support a particular take on a story.”

William Kern, managing editor and executive director at journalistic nonprofit site worldmeets.us:
“Beyond the basics of being able to meet a deadline and having good communications and writing skills, 1) How much of a sense does this person have of life on the ground in other nations? Have they spent a significant time abroad? Do they speak any other languages? Will they have the personal skills and intellectual resources to get beyond superficiality and really grasp the sense of national self that people in the country they are covering feel? 2) Are they able to overcome how they are viewed as, let us suppose, Americans? A journalist should not be the subject or part of the story 3) Can this person offer our readers a genuine sense of how the “other side” sees the situation?”