Katharine Viner

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Katharine Viner_table_infobox_0

Katharine VinerKatharine Viner_header_cell_0_0_0
BornKatharine Viner_header_cell_0_1_0 Katharine Sophie Viner

January 1971 (1971-01) (age 49)Katharine Viner_cell_0_1_1

Alma materKatharine Viner_header_cell_0_2_0 Pembroke College, OxfordKatharine Viner_cell_0_2_1
OccupationKatharine Viner_header_cell_0_3_0 JournalistKatharine Viner_cell_0_3_1
Notable credit(s)Katharine Viner_header_cell_0_4_0 Editor-in-chief of The GuardianKatharine Viner_cell_0_4_1

Katharine Sophie Viner (born January 1971) is a British journalist and playwright. Katharine Viner_sentence_0

She became the first female editor-in-chief at The Guardian on 1 June 2015 succeeding Alan Rusbridger. Katharine Viner_sentence_1

Viner previously headed The Guardian's web operations in Australia and the United States, before being selected for the editor-in-chief's position. Katharine Viner_sentence_2

Early life and education Katharine Viner_section_0

Raised in Yorkshire, Viner is the daughter of teachers. Katharine Viner_sentence_3

Her grandfather, Vic Viner, was an able seaman involved in the Dunkirk evacuation. Katharine Viner_sentence_4

Viner was educated at Ripon Grammar School, where she was head girl. Katharine Viner_sentence_5

As a teenager, she joined Youth CND and the Anti-Apartheid Movement, although the nearest groups were 25 miles away, and read Spare Rib. Katharine Viner_sentence_6

Her first newspaper article, published in The Guardian in 1987 while she was still at school, was on the ending of the GCE O level examinations, which were being replaced in the UK by the General Certificate of Secondary Education (GCSE). Katharine Viner_sentence_7

"Cramming five years of knowledge into two and a half hours does not seem to be a fair system", she wrote. Katharine Viner_sentence_8

Around 1988, Viner had a period of work experience at the Ripon Gazette, her local newspaper. Katharine Viner_sentence_9

After A levels Viner read English at Pembroke College, Oxford. Katharine Viner_sentence_10

Just before her finals, Viner won a competition organised by The Guardian's women's page and was advised by Louise Chunn, then Guardian women's editor, to pursue a career in journalism. Katharine Viner_sentence_11

"I honestly thought journalism wasn't for me, I thought it was for men in suits in London", she remembered in 2005. Katharine Viner_sentence_12

During her 20s, Viner spent most of her holidays in the Middle East, a region in which she has a particular interest, spending time in Lebanon, Syria, Israel, West Bank and other locations. Katharine Viner_sentence_13

Career beginnings Katharine Viner_section_1

For work experience, Viner joined Cosmopolitan, a women's monthly magazine. Katharine Viner_sentence_14

The magazine retained her afterwards and she became features assistant, then news and careers editor; earlier, she had won another student competition involving a submission to the magazine. Katharine Viner_sentence_15

After three years at The Sunday Times, working as a commissioning editor and writer for its magazine. Katharine Viner_sentence_16

Viner joined The Guardian in 1997. Katharine Viner_sentence_17

Following a period on the staff of the women's page, she became editor of the Saturday Weekend supplement in 1998. Katharine Viner_sentence_18

She became features editor in 2006 and deputy editor in 2008 at the same time as Ian Katz. Katharine Viner_sentence_19

Viner edited the Saturday edition of The Guardian from 2008 to 2012. Katharine Viner_sentence_20

Laura Slattery in The Irish Times, reviewing Viner's career up to March 2015, noted that she "has almost always been the person who does the commissioning, [rather than] provided the byline". Katharine Viner_sentence_21

Several Guardian pieces by Viner published during this period are reprinted in an anthology drawn from the Guardian archive entitled Women of the Revolution: Forty Years of Feminism (2010), edited by Kira Cochrane. Katharine Viner_sentence_22

Australia and New York Katharine Viner_section_2

In January 2013, Viner's relocation to Sydney to supervise a new Guardian digital edition in Australia was announced; this venture was launched in May 2013. Katharine Viner_sentence_23

Viner delivered the AN Smith Lecture in Journalism at the University of Melbourne in October 2013. Katharine Viner_sentence_24

D. Katharine Viner_sentence_25 D. Guttenplan, London correspondent of the American Nation magazine, wrote in March 2015 that "there is no one on either side of the [Atlantic] ocean who has thought as deeply as Viner about the relationship between readers, technology and the future of journalism." Katharine Viner_sentence_26

Guttenplan is not totally convinced by Viner's "eagerness to transcend print" in the move to digital media, but commenting about her 2013 speech in Australia, he writes that "her arguments for the importance of reader engagement, and for sustained, original reporting of information that someone, somewhere, wants to keep secret are compelling and convincing." Katharine Viner_sentence_27

In the summer of 2014, Viner moved to New York City and became the new head of The Guardian's American website in succession to Janine Gibson while remaining deputy editor of Guardian News & Media. Katharine Viner_sentence_28

While based in New York, Viner expanded GuardianUS's coverage from a limited range of subjects, into areas like the arts and sport and increased staffing. Katharine Viner_sentence_29

Editor-in-chief of The Guardian Katharine Viner_section_3

Appointment Katharine Viner_section_4

In March 2015, Viner won a majority in the ballot of Guardian and Observer editorial staff as the favoured successor of Alan Rusbridger as The Guardian's editor-in-chief. Katharine Viner_sentence_30

Viner received 53% of first-choice votes from the 964 staff who participated, and was thus shortlisted for selection. Katharine Viner_sentence_31

Former deputy editor and rival, Ian Katz (editor of the BBC's Newsnight television programme since 2013), was also on the final short list of two. Katharine Viner_sentence_32

Viner was appointed editor-in-chief on 20 March 2015, the first woman to be the editor of The Guardian in its 194-year history, and assumed her new post on 1 June 2015. Katharine Viner_sentence_33

She intends to make the "media organisation" a "home for the most ambitious journalism, ideas and events" which is able to reach "out to readers all around the world." Katharine Viner_sentence_34

It has been suggested by author and former Guardian columnist Michael Wolff that another of Viner's rivals to succeed Rusbridger, Janine Gibson, suffered because of internal disquiet over the internal impact on The Guardian of the Edward Snowden revelations which Gibson edited in New York. Katharine Viner_sentence_35

Wolff said Gibson aligned herself with Snowden, promising more of the same, while Viner "pitched decidedly against Gibson and, in a sense, against Snowden". Katharine Viner_sentence_36

Peter Wilby, writing in the New Statesman, preferred a different explanation: "Viner is a more charming, more inclusive and less threatening figure than Janine Gibson, who started as the bookies’ and Rusbridger's favourite." Katharine Viner_sentence_37

Later developments Katharine Viner_section_5

In March 2016, Viner and Guardian News and Media chief executive David Pemsel announced cost-cutting measures, leading to the projected loss of 250 jobs, to reduce unsustainable losses in order to break even within three years. Katharine Viner_sentence_38

The following month, The Times reported internal tensions within the organisation as Rusbridger prepared to become Chairman of the Scott Trust, the ultimate overseer to ensure The Guardian survives "in perpetuity". Katharine Viner_sentence_39

Rusbridger's expansion of the company's operations was reportedly seen by staff as responsible for the decisions which Viner and Pemsel have made. Katharine Viner_sentence_40

Viner and David Pemsel successfully opposed Rusbridger becoming Chair of the Scott Trust Ltd and he dropped plans to take up the post. Katharine Viner_sentence_41

However, appeals to readers for donations have been successful. Katharine Viner_sentence_42

"We now get about the same amount of money from membership and paying readers as we do from advertising", Viner told the Financial Times in May 2017. Katharine Viner_sentence_43

By the time The Guardian and sister title The Observer relaunched as a tabloid in January 2018, part of the cost-cutting exercise, revenue from readers exceeded advertising and the group expects to break even in 2018/19, for the first time since the 1980s, rather than continue to sustain heavy losses. Katharine Viner_sentence_44

As of 2018 this approach was considered successful, having brought more than 1 million subscriptions or donations, with the paper hoping to break even by April 2019. Katharine Viner_sentence_45

Industry specialists consulted by the Financial Times have continued to doubt whether the donation and membership model is financially viable in the long term. Katharine Viner_sentence_46

Other work Katharine Viner_section_6

Outside journalism Viner is known for My Name Is Rachel Corrie, a play she co-edited with actor Alan Rickman from the writings and emails of Rachel Corrie, an American activist who was killed by a bulldozer operated by the Israeli Army in Rafah, Gaza in 2003. Katharine Viner_sentence_47

The play was first performed at the Royal Court Theatre in 2005. Katharine Viner_sentence_48

After Rickman died of cancer in January 2016, Viner wrote that their collaboration had been initially difficult, but "on the opening night we each admitted that we couldn’t have done justice to Rachel’s words without the other". Katharine Viner_sentence_49

Viner was a judge in the Orange Prize for Fiction in 2004 and was on the board of the Royal Court Theatre for 13 years. Katharine Viner_sentence_50

Political positions Katharine Viner_section_7

In 2002, Viner criticised the planned invasion of Iraq and wrote that George W. Bush "bombed Afghanistan to liberate the women from their burkas (or, as he would have it, to free the "women of cover"), and sent out his wife Laura to tell how Afghans are tortured for wearing nail varnish". Katharine Viner_sentence_51

Viner is an opponent of Brexit. Katharine Viner_sentence_52

She wrote: "At the end of a campaign that dominated the news for months, it was suddenly obvious that the winning side had no plan for how or when the UK would leave the EU – while the deceptive claims that carried the leave campaign to victory suddenly crumbled." Katharine Viner_sentence_53

Credits to the contents of this page go to the authors of the corresponding Wikipedia page: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Katharine Viner.