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Community Researchers (Contract)

Programs | New York, NY | Contract

Job Description

Reboot is a social impact firm dedicated to inclusive development and accountable governance. We help governments, foundations, and international organizations achieve their missions.

Reboot is seeking 2 researchers to help us gather qualitative research which will support those who have committed low-level offenses in clearing outstanding bench warrants. This is a full-time, short-term engagement in and around New York City. Researchers will complete an in-depth 2-day training to learn Reboot’s design research approach and methodologies. From approximately October 12 - November 17, Researchers will collaborate closely with our team to conduct research through in-person interviews and analysis related to individual information-seeking behaviors, perceptions of the criminal justice system, and knowledge of services for low-level summons and warrant-clearing. Finally, throughout the month of January, the Researchers will work with Reboot to prototype possible interventions with relevant communities.

Ideal candidates have strong existing ties to minority communities in Queens, the Bronx, and Brooklyn. In addition, an academic/professional background in law, criminal justice, social services, and/or social science is useful.

You have superb qualitative research skills and are excited to apply these in order to support those affected by the criminal justice system. You are able to build trust and discuss sensitive topics with ease and empathy.

A variety of skills are sought: creativity, problem-solving, ethnographic field research, project management, and documentation are all highly valued. Direct experience with community organizing is an asset and native fluency in Spanish is desired.


Researchers will be responsible for research execution and documentation. Specific responsibilities include:

Research Execution and Documentation

  • Conduct field research in and around New York City from October to November and the month of January.
  • Digitally document field interviews and observations.
  • Manage parts of research documentation and support documentation of final outputs.

Research Synthesis

  • Participate in research synthesis sessions and support the research team in analyzing data to translate research findings into final products.  


Ideal candidates have:

  • At least three years of relevant professional experience in qualitative research, public policy, social science, community organizing, or consulting.
  • A university degree in a relevant field.
  • Demonstrated experience with qualitative research and analysis, and ideally ethnographic research in particular.
  • Deep knowledge of New York City.
  • Close ties to minority communities in New York City, including community networks and services.
  • Excellent communication skills in English. Ideally, a fluency in Spanish.
  • Computer proficiency (especially MS Office and Google apps) required.

Reboot is an equal opportunity employer

Reboot respects and values diversity. We are committed to ensuring that there is no discrimination in the recruitment, retention, training, or development of employees on the basis of gender, gender identity or expression, race, national origin, religious belief, political opinion, age, or disability. Diversity of perspective and experience benefits our firm and helps us deliver our best work. We encourage qualified individuals from all backgrounds to apply.


Selected researchers will be expected to be available on a full-time basis to participate in a training and research sprint between October 12–November 17. After this, the engagement will require approximately 2-5 days in December, and become full-time again for the month of January.

Interested candidates are asked to submit a CV and a cover letter that describes why you believe you would be a good fit for Reboot and this role. In your cover letter, please indicate:

  • Your availability from October 2017-January 2018;
  • Languages you speak at professional proficiency;
  • Any work you have done with minority communities in New York City.

Only complete applications will be considered.

Application deadline: September 21st, 2017.