To catalyze the Kenyan tech community’s growth.


Research & Prototyping Intern1

  • Company: REFUNITE
  • Deadline: Friday 25th July 2014
  • Location: Nairobi
Job Description

We’re searching for a creative, energetic, talented, and highly motivated operations research & prototyping intern to join REFUNITE, a cutting-edge mobile technology nonprofit.

About us:

REFUNITE’s mission and passion is re-connecting refugees to family throughout the world, with a focus on Africa and the Middle East. We have a super smart team, an office in a dynamic co-working space on Ngong Road, are building a truly employee-centered culture, and work hard but take the time to enjoy ourselves. Our work also benefits hundreds of thousands (and one day millions!) of refugees around the world. Check us out at

Key qualifications:

  • You’re an entrepreneurial researcher with a bias towards action, with the ability to draw upon a varied toolkit to rapidly gain insights and set up quick experiments to test out new concepts. Relevant disciplines may include human centered design thinking, ethnography, behavioral economics, UX research, or social science methodologies such as randomized control trials.

  • You possess strong written and spoken communications skills. We have a highly cross-cultural team with staff in Denmark, Kenya, and Uganda in addition to working with a wide variety of people from different walks of life. The ability to communicate well and empathize is therefore integral.

  • You’re a natural problem solver, passionate about finding solutions to big challenges - particularly focusing on issues facing refugees.

  • You are highly resourceful, and excited about the prospect of working in environments that are tough to operate in.

  • You have excellent project management skills - the kind of person who can keep the big picture in view but concurrently knows how to effectively organize and execute tasks that require a laser-focus on detail.

Role description:

You will work directly with REFUNITE’s Africa Director with support from the operations team to plan and execute a series of short-term but continuous research/prototyping programs. These programs will be designed to gather data and better understand the needs of our existing users (primarily refugees displaced through violent conflict in camps, settlements, and municipalities).

Based on these needs, the goal is to figure out both what services we should be providing and how to improve current services, rapidly prototyping and evaluating the most promising of these to see what should be scaled and what should be discarded. You will be conducting much of this research in the field - whether in Kakuma refugee camp, in Kampala, or other locations.

This is an important role with significant responsibility and the potential for real impact - it is for that reason we’re searching for someone with unique and multiple talents. Should it work out, there is also the possibility of a full time position tailored for the individual to continue the work with greater resources and a wider geographical remit.

Desired skills and experience:

  • Strong interpersonal and communications skills.

  • Deep research experience using a variety of methodologies.

  • Comfort with facilitation, demonstrated through running focus groups, workshops, one-on-one and group interviews, and other such tools.

  • Demonstrated comfort with travel to resource-poor environments.

  • Structured, transparent, and organized.

  • Ability to establish and maintain effective working relations with people in a multi-cultural, multi-ethnic environment with sensitivity and respect for diversity.

  • Commitment, integrity, and a drive for results.

  • Highly comfortable with technology, with the ability to rapidly learn new tools.

  • Recently completed or currently working on a masters-level degree in a research discipline, a design discipline (user experience, etc.), or other relevant program. The specific academic program is less important than the relevant skill set, however. For this reason, strong candidates from other degree programs will also be considered, in addition to exceptional recent college graduates.


Compensation and hours are negotiable, based on background, availability, and academic situation. We are keeping this internship purposefully flexible to find the best possible candidate, but a significant time commitment with frequent travel will be required. The initial contract period is for 3-6 months, and has the potential to turn into a longer term role with REFUNITE.

How to apply

Please send a cover letter, CV, and supporting research portfolio/experience to The interview process will be a mix of behavioral and case questions. Due to the volume of applications we receive, we will only be able to respond to those selected for an interview. The deadline for applications is July 25, 2014.