The City of Durham is home to an innovation team—known as the “i-team”—that deploys a range of strategies, including quantitative and qualitative research and design-based innovation to bring greater clarity and new solutions to the city’s most pressing problems.

Innovation team members believe in the power of cities and city government to dramatically improve people’s lives. They are uniquely positioned to bring human-centered design into policy-making. The team’s multidisciplinary approach leverages skills and tools from design thinking, behavioral science and analytics to help tackle hard-to-solve public challenges.

The Durham i-team is seeking a civic designer to bring design-based innovation expertise and creativity to the team’s work, with a specific focus on co-creation, research, data synthesis, idea generation and prototyping. An understanding of municipal governance and familiarity and knowledge of public sector innovation is a plus.


  • Employing design thinking-based approaches to identify the root causes of civic challenges and explore the perspectives of residents, government employees, and other community stakeholders.
  • Skillfully moving people outside their comfort zones to embrace new approaches, mindsets and solutions.
  • Synthesizing information gathered through design research to uncover root cause insights and generate corresponding design criteria.
  • Leading structured design-based sessions for the team as well as their stakeholders.
  • Conceptualizing new solutions to address complex, multi-dimensional issues.
  • Providing support on the delivery of functional prototypes.
  • Testing and prototyping ideas with stakeholders and end-users.
  • Sharing and teaching design methodologies to fellow team members, City partners, and other stakeholders.
  • Work with City divisions to understand the needs of residents and advocate for the end user by designing intuitive interactions and easy-to-use experiences.

Minimum Qualifications & Experience:

  • Three years of relevant work experience
  • Bachelor’s Degree required
  • Experience in human-centered design

Additional Preferred Skills:

  • Knowledge of lean and agile design methodologies, including expertise in determining when and how to use specific approaches, deliverables and facilitation methods
  • Ability to engage with a wide range of digital specialists, subject-matter experts, stakeholders, and the public to determine the best approaches to a problem
  • Experience planning, conducting, and analyzing qualitative user research
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