Rao joins The Atlantic from The New York Times, where for the past three years he has written and edited stories about business, economics, and finance in Europe.
In a memo to staff announcing Rao’s hire, Goldberg and editor of TheAtlantic.com Adrienne LaFrance wrote: “Prashant is an editorial force. He’s overflowing with ideas about how a real-time magazine can cover the biggest stories on the planet.”
As global editor for The Atlantic, Rao will lead the site’s coverage across a wide range of beats related to U.S. foreign policy, democracy, and global conflict, and oversee its team of reporters based in Washington, London, and Paris. Rao will join The Atlantic in October and succeeds current global editor Kathy Gilsinan, who is moving to cover the counter-terrorism beat as a staff writer.
Rao is currently deputy Europe business editor for The New York Times, where he has edited and written about business, economics, finance, and a variety of other topics like experiments in British policing and technology. Before joining the Times in 2016, Rao spent more than a decade on the wires, including nine years at Agence France-Presse. He was based in Baghdad from 2009 to 2014, the last two years as AFP's Baghdad bureau chief. During his time there, he covered several elections, a tumultuous security situation, and, in his final weeks, the fall of Mosul to the Islamic State.
Last year, The Atlantic hired staff writer Rachel Donadio, also from The New York Times, to cover global news and culture from her base in Paris, and promoted Krishnadev Calamur to global diplomacy correspondent and Yasmeen Serhan to a London-based assistant editor on the global team.
The Atlantic is in the midst of an ambitious expansion this year, which will see the company add 100 new staff and investments across its divisions and platforms. It is setting out to double its team covering politics and national affairs, with the creation of ten new reporter and editor positions. Other recent editorial hires include Vernon Loeb as politics editor; Todd S. Purdum as a staff writer and California correspondent; Ellen Cushing to lead tech coverage in San Francisco; Ashley Fetters as a staff writer with the Family section; and Lauren N. Williams as a senior editor and Hannah Giorgis as a staff writer on the Culture team.