In a nutshell: 

IDEO Shanghai is in search of a Senior Design Research Lead who is passionate about leading project teams, adept at uncovering human-centered insights, and skillful at translating these insights into meaningful opportunities for design and innovation. We are looking for someone who can inspire fellow designers, and lead with both empathy and conviction for the people we design for. 

Why is this role important for IDEO’s work?

At IDEO, our design always starts with people. We believe that meaningful solutions should deliver value for the people they are designed to serve. As a Senior Design Research Lead, you will play a crucial role throughout the entire project process — using research to inspire our design teams, inform better prototypes, and elevate the perspective of our clients.

Once here, you will:

  • Provide and teach excellent craft application to our work, understanding the client's needs and leading others through demonstrable depth and breadth of your skills and capabilities;
  • Lead diverse teams and engage clients through the entire project journey. Serve as a trusted advisor and consultant to our clients. Manage multiple stakeholder needs both effectively and sensitively;
  • Design, scope, and run research that helps us tackle our design challenge;
  • Facilitate synthesis, generating insights and opportunities for design.
  • Creatively articulate the insights and stories behind our design concepts.

Relevant experience:

  • 10+ years of Design Research or qualitative research experiences, with solid experience in China;
  • 4+ years in a client-facing role leading projects. Advanced professional experience connecting with people deeply and ability to surface and articulate insights; 
  • Experience and Passion for leading and building teams, and teaching others about research;
  • Proven ability to use human-centered insight to answer business questions;
  • Mastery of qualitative research methods, including research scope and design;
  • Strong presentation skills with a creative and compelling storytelling style;
  • Conversational fluency in Mandarin is a must;
  • Sharp analytical and sense-making skills;
  • Deep experience using investigative research to uncover human truths;
  • Business and consulting savvy, with an ability to think strategically;
  • Innate curiosity, and a passion for telling compelling human stories.

What does IDEO offer you? 

IDEO is a place unlike any other. It’s a place where you can solve diverse, complex challenges for our clients or the organization, alongside thoughtful, intelligent individuals who lead with curiosity, empathy, and optimism. Sure we work hard, but we also intentionally craft moments that allow our community to pause, create, and connect. We encourage our community to bring their whole selves to work, respect the need for work-life balance, and allow for autonomy in the design process and in your career. 

Some previous projects to check out:

  • Innova: Designing a School System from the Ground Up (中文 | EN
  • Hunter Gatherer: A Trusted Source of Food in China (中文 | EN)
  • North Face: Growing an American Brand in China (中文 | EN

Application instructions:

If you identify with our values and would like to contribute to our studio, we’d love to hear from you. Please apply with a CV, cover letter, and a portfolio if you have one.

Apply for this Job

* Required
resume chosen  
(File types: pdf, doc, docx, txt, rtf)


Please reach out to our support team via our help center.
Please complete the reCAPTCHA above.