Guardian/Observer integration - four out of five heads of content are Guardian section editors

Guardian News and Media has appointed five new senior, platform-neutral editors who will oversee coverage in news, business, sport and consumer news for the Guardian, Observer and Guardian.co.uk – four of whom are existing Guardian section editors.

Nick Hopkins, The Guardian’s head of national news since 2006, will become head of national news across all three platforms.

Harriet Sherwood, since 2003 the Guardian’s foreign editor, will be head of international news. Ben Clissitt sports editor of the Guardian, has been appointed head of sport and Deborah Hargreaves, currently the Guardian’s business editor, will be head of business.

Observer personal finance editor Jill Insley will be head of consumer. She has been with the Observer for ten years and launched Cash, its personal finance section.

An email to staff signed jointly by Guardian editor-in-chief Alan Rusbridger, Observer editor John Mulholland, new head of news, business and sport Paul Johnson and digital director Emily Bell, said: ‘All these people have been involved in all of the meetings to look at how we will produce our journalism in the future.

‘At the outset, we said we wanted to devise a way of working that would deliver our vision for 24/7 news provision (within existing budget and headcount) and prepare people to work in an integrated way in Kings Place.”

The email stressed that ‘separate section editors, responsible for maintaining a distinctive tone of voice, will be retained in each subject area for all three platforms”.

In a statement, Rusbridger said: ‘These appointments are a crucial step towards delivering our vision of the future, providing news 24/7 while maintaining the distinctiveness of the Guardian and Observer.

‘They mark the beginning of the next stage towards greater integration, a process which has already involved significant collaboration and consultation. Reporting to Paul Johnson, these new roles will help shape new teams from the Guardian, Observer and Guardian.co.uk.

‘All five new heads have played a central role in helping design the new structures, along with their colleagues. They all have the unanimous support of the three platform editors.”

GNM said more appointments were expected once the structure of the new departments has been finalised next month.

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