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Research Manager

Programs | New York, NY | Full Time, Contract, and Temp to Perm

Job Description

Reboot is a social impact firm dedicated to inclusive development and accountable governance.

To improve social outcomes, we must first understand social challenges as they are. Intensive contextual research is thus at the heart of all we do. Reboot’s research helps our clients and partners make effective policy, program, and investment decisions, and implement them through robust, appropriate design solutions.

We are seeking a Research Manager for our Programs team. The role will lead research engagements, provide technical direction on research methods for design and implementation engagements, and support organizational learning and process improvements on related technical topics. Near-term assignments will focus on conducting leading-edge, generative research, in the US and around the world, to support the development of independent media and healthy information ecosystems; civic innovation initiatives that make governments more participatory and accountable; technology investment strategies to support human development; and criminal justice and social protection programs to support vulnerable populations.

The ideal candidate is deeply committed to the issues Reboot works on, and has the intellectual courage and curiosity to develop innovative new solutions. You are passionate about unearthing insights about people and systems, and about using these as tools to drive positive change. You have superb qualitative research skills; have designed and carried out significant primary research in low-resource settings with diverse communities; and are looking to make research more relevant, accessible, and usable for critical decision-making.

This is a full-time consultancy based in our New York office. The initial duration is expected to be six (6) months, with the expectation of significant travel during project periods. There is a possibility for this consultancy to grow into a staff role.


  • Manage the design, execution, documentation, and presentation of Reboot’s research projects from start to finish.

  • Manage project staff and consultants, ensuring their timely and effective inputs.

  • Train and manage Reboot’s research teams, which may include subject matter experts without formal research backgrounds as well as field teams, in research and synthesis methods.

  • Help new clients and partners understand Reboot’s design research approach, and lead discussions on project scope, methodology, and outputs. Plan and execute partner workshops. Lead partner presentations as appropriate.

  • Collaborate with team members, clients, partners, and users to turn research insights into design solutions.

  • Contribute to process innovation within Reboot to improve our organizational agility, efficiency, and impact.

  • Contribute to Reboot’s internal learning and external communications and advocacy by creating content (including articles and blog posts), representing Reboot at events, sharing articles for discussion, and contributing to Reboot’s online presence.


  • 7-10 years of experience working with both qualitative and quantitative methods in an integrated way. Understanding of diverse research instruments, approaches, and study designs, and can explain the trade-offs of each to a lay audience.

  • An advanced degree in a relevant field (e.g. anthropology, sociology, design, economics).

  • Experience in managing multi-country research studies, ideally for both public interest institutions (governments, NGOs, think tanks) and private sector organizations. Understanding of the varied demands of each audience, and methodologies best suited for different objectives and institutions.

  • Extensive experience in all stages of the research process, and capable of leading other team members, including non-researchers, into territory unfamiliar to them.

  • Has recruited, trained, and managed field teams in diverse international environments, including in the regions where Reboot works.

  • Fluency in key topics and recent trends in at least two of Reboot’s work areas: public policy, international development, governance, and/or social innovation. Specialization within these areas, particularly in open government, media development, or civic technology is a significant plus.

  • Demonstrated experience translating research insights into actionable strategies and/or designs. Familiar with translating research into robust, visual design tools, including user personas, user journeys and experience maps, and ecosystem maps.

  • Superb writer, with the ability to effectively synthesize and present complex ideas to diverse audiences.

  • Comfortable in oral presentations, and capable of presenting findings to senior executives and at public events. Experience communicating ideas in creative ways using different media platforms.

  • Ability to work under tight time constraints. Can multitask with ease, manage ambiguity, and adapt to frequently changing priorities.

  • Fluency in another language is strongly preferred, especially Spanish, French, or Arabic.

  • Appreciation of complexity. Comfort with ambiguity. Sense of humor.

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.

To Apply

Please complete the application through the link below. Include your CV and a cover letter that describes why you believe you would be a good fit for Reboot and this role. Only complete applications will be considered.

Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis.