Sr. Human-Centered Design Researcher

HGA is an award winning architectural, engineering and planning firm that is currently looking for a human-centered design researcher to join their research and innovation team, Design Insight Group (DIG). DIG is an HGA is an award winning architectural, engineering and planning firm that is currently looking for a human-centered design researcher interdisciplinary team, within HGA, of evidence-based design researchers, practice-based researchers, lean process improvement specialists, design anthropologists, and data analytics and visualization specialists. DIG is driven by a mission to be highly integrate research and innovation across the firm’s practices to advance design processes, build to the body of knowledge, and apply original insight to achieve positive and lasting human impact. The position could be filled at any of HGA offices (Alexandria, VA; Boston, MA ; Washington, D.C.; Los Angeles, Sacramento, San Francisco or San Jose, CA; Madison or Milwaukee, WI; or Rochester or Minneapolis, MN) as the applicant will serve as a resource across the nation and for all practice groups within the firm (healthcare, public, corporate, cultural, science & technology and higher education). This is a fulltime position, and the applicant will report to DIG Directors.


This position includes the following responsibilities:

  • Design and lead participatory and action research into project work to lead HGA’s effort of designing with people.

  • Develop and implement ethnographic methods to provide a deeper understanding of human behavior, values and culture to translate and design into tangible experiences.

  • Work with interdisciplinary teams to integrate mixed methods research results into clear, actionable findings.

  • Ability to identify potential human understanding and impact research topics, develop new techniques and technologies for data collection, effectively interpret and dissemination findings, and apply insights to inform design of built environment.

  • Present findings to clients and work with them to understand how to implement changes based on our research.

  • Prepare and present on areas of expertise at industry conferences, webinars, and other outlets.

  • Contribute to proposals and other business development activities.

  • Help identify and pursue opportunities to integrate qualitative research methods and human-centered design to the next generation of architects and designers 


We are seeking candidates with:

  • Preferred 7+ years of being in built environment practice

  • Proven application of equitable design thinking

  • An understanding of human experience research trends in the design practice

  • Familiarity in any of the following markets, services and processes

    • Organizational and change management

    • Experience design

    • Engagement design: International Association of Public Participation (IAP2)

    • Social Network Analysis

    • Higher Education

    • Science and Technology

    • Healthcare

  • Proficiency with Microsoft 365 products, Adobe Creative Suite software, Qualtrics, and other facilitation applications and/or data collection/analyses tools such as Miro, NVivo, and Atlas.ti as examples.

Skills and experiences:

The ideal candidate will be curious, collaborative, assertive, personable, and a self-starter, with the capacity to manage multiple tasks across multiple teams. This position requires the ability to communicate effectively and coordinate with internal and external team members and who is not afraid to dive into new types of work. Skills and Requirements:

  • Strategic thinking

  • Ability to be nimble, work across several different projects concurrently in a fast-pace work environment

  • Effective communicator and collaborator; team-orientated

  • Curious problem-solver with a proven track record of applying insights and delivering results

  • User-centric mindset • High proficiency in verbal and written communication

  • Self-starter, self-accountable, and action-orientated

  • Creative and analytical approach

  • Business know-how: Understanding of business metrics and the ability to translate company goals and objectives into experience design

Please provide a cover letter stating your experience and qualifications, a resume or CV, and a portfolio of your work.

HGA is both team-oriented and employee-friendly, and social activities are integrated into our office culture. We offer challenge, recognition and personal visibility with an opportunity to be part of some great projects.

Please attach resume and cover letter by applying to:

©Society for Applied Anthropology 

P.O. Box 2436 • Oklahoma City, OK 73101 • 405.843.5113 •