Jonathan W. Rosen


I'm an independent journalist writing widely from the developing world—with a particular focus on East Africa and Africa's Great Lakes region.

Over the last decade, I’ve reported from a dozen African countries—with occasional forays into Europe, Asia, and the United States—writing on governance, regional and global geopolitics, economic development, business, technology, energy, environment, urbanization, sports, outdoor adventure, public health, and climate change.   

My work, including features, analysis, and narrative nonfiction, has been published by National Geographic, MIT Technology Review, Foreign Policy, Al Jazeera America, Al Jazeera EnglishThe New York TimesThe Boston Globe, the BBC, GlobalPostWorld Politics ReviewRoads & Kingdoms, Slate, and other outlets in the U.S., Europe, and Africa. My writing has also been featured on LongformLongreads, and the New Yorker's literary blog Page-Turner, and has twice been recognized at the Diageo Africa Business Reporting Awards in London, I’m a one-time winner and two-time finalist.

My most memorable reporting adventures include investigating the shooting of a leading conservationist in the Congo; camping with some of the world’s last remaining hunter-gatherers; chronicling Chinese athletes training in Kenya; profiling Swaziland’s troubled monarchy; and taking an up-close look at Ethiopia’s so-called “developmental state.” I’ve also written extensively about the post-genocide transformation of Rwanda, where I was based from 2010-2011 and 2014-2016. I spent 2016 as a fellow of the Washington, DC-based Alicia Patterson Foundation, which funded my reporting of articles related to foreign investment in African industry, agriculture, renewable energy, and innovation. 

In addition to my reporting, I’ve worked as an independent analyst for the political risk consulting firm Eurasia Group; as a consultant for GIZ and Rotary International; as web content editor at the Boston-based public health NGO Pathfinder International; and as a book critic for USA Today, where I reviewed more than a dozen non-fiction titles related to global political economy. On my first trip to East Africa in 2004 I taught English and geography at a rural Kenyan high school.

I'm a native of Amherst, Massachusetts and a graduate of Amherst Regional High SchoolTufts University, and the Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) in Bologna, Italy and Washington, DC.