Local Impact Human Centered Design Consultant

Aga Khan Foundation


AKF USA is seeking a Human Centered Design (HCD) Consultant for the AKF and USAID jointly-funded Local Impact Leader with Associate (LWA) award. With an eye toward conflict prevention and resolution, Local Impact will target marginalized and vulnerable communities to: (1) Catalyze inclusive economic growth and ensure basic livelihoods; (2) Enhance infrastructure and access to basic services with a focus on clean energy; (3) Enhance the capacity of citizens and local institutions; and (4) Promote pluralism and social cohesion.

The Local Impact HCD Consultant will support a team of designers and co-creators in each country office focused on turning human insights into tangible products, services, and experiences and will support those designs towards funding and implementation. The consultant will also build the capacity of local teams in leading and facilitating design processes. Supporting an interdisciplinary team, the consultant will tackle complex, human-centered and socially impactful challenges alongside other development practitioners from different backgrounds. These challenges will span Kyrgyzstan, Afghanistan, and Tajikistan.

Hours and Availability: Given the global nature of work and consultations to be undertaken during this assignment, the consultant is expected to be reasonably flexible with his/her availability for such consultations taking into consideration different time zones.

Travel: It is expected that the consultant will travel to Central Asia for 3-4 weeks per design sprint assigned and likely around 40-60% of the time will be traveling.


  • Participate in overall Orientation offered by AKF.
  • Contribute to other project documents such as reports, communications materials, strategy documents and presentations.
  • Lead and support local teams on HCD challenges, training, and processes.
  • Engage with key project partners and donors to ensure they are bought-in and contributing to the project.
  • Implement strategies to measure process results and gather feedback to continuously improve AKF’s innovation strategy.
  • Support country and agency offices in planning design processes, methods, and tools to use.
  • Identifies new opportunities for strengthening and expanding the impact of HCD across AKF’s global projects and the development sector writ large.
  • Lead on the “by communities” approach to HCD under Local Impact.
  • Oversee HCD pilots, as needed.
  • Lead the assigned design sprints in Central Asia, including design research field work, collaborative work with the design team and the engagement of a broader set of stakeholders to generate ideas, create prototypes and test them in the field. Of particular importance for this role is to help guide the local design teams from insights and ideas toward concepts that include strategic recommendations for implementation and scale.
  • Other duties as assigned.

Key deliverables:

Support the country-based design team in completing following deliverables and lead on the development, if necessary –

  • Documenting the phase-wise progress on the challenge via presentations and archiving all files in the relevant project folders.
  • Scheduling monthly calls with Global Programs Team to share progress and seek feedback on the work.
  • Developing the final pitch presentation for the challenge and pilot documents (including MERL Plan, Budget, Implementation Plan).
  • Scheduling meeting with GPT and USAID representative to share pitch presentation, seek feedback, and obtain approval for pilot implementation.
  • Developing any communication materials (blog post, article) needed to support learning and reflection.
  • Develop “by communities” approach to HCD under Local Impact and work with global and local team to implement it.
  • Provide reporting and work plan inputs as requested.


  • Experience in tackling poverty-related challenges through HCD in low and middle-income contexts.
  • A background in one or more traditional design disciplines (interaction, visual communications, or service design preferred), with 3 to 5 years of work experience. Fluency in the human-centered design process, from qualitative research and synthesis to ideation, prototyping, and implementation is required.
  • A credible portfolio with examples of HCD products, services and implementation methodologies that has been used to create impact in the world.

Skills and Knowledge:

  • Spoken and written fluency in English is essential, and knowledge of Russian, Tajik or Dari is an asset.
  • Ability to communicate succinctly and effectively in English. Writing skills in Russian, Tajik or Kyrgyz is also ideal.
  • Takes initiative and works independently while cultivating consensus in strengthening AKF’s leadership in using HCD for effective social impact.
  • Communicates clearly and concisely, individually and across a broad scope of stakeholders and communities; expresses complex ideas and concepts in simple terms; listens to the views of others; changes communication styles to meet individual and audience needs.
  • Extensive experience implementing complex projects in challenging environments in developing countries; demonstrated ability to manage internal reporting systems.


  • This position will require frequent travel (50% or more) throughout the portfolio including country-level visits, participation in high-level forums, and representative roles for partnership engagement as determined by the needs of the emerging HCD portfolio.
  • Most country and project teams are located in Central Asia. The candidate will need to be able to effectively manage and deliver programming on HCD that works within the majority of country-team office hours as per their respective time zones.
  • The successful candidate will be expected to work virtually from their home as the COVID-19 crisis continues while being sensitive to the office hours of AKF colleagues across its focus geographies.

Values and Attitudes

  • Diversity and Inclusion: Treats all people with dignity and respect; sensitive towards others; open and understanding toward other people’s cultures, values, autonomy, and faiths; demonstrates compassion and empathy; is courteous to others with respect for their background, religion, gender and age.
  • Integrity and Commitment: Demonstrates equity, transparency and integrity with high personal and organizational ethical standards; is fair, honest and trustworthy with respect for confidentiality; inspires and builds trust; values and advances community-level agency in decision-making for projects.
  • Ethics and Safeguarding: Committed to acting ethically and upholding safeguarding standards towards all staff, volunteers and beneficiaries of the organization.

The rate range for this position is $ $550-$750 per day.

How to apply


Interested applicants please apply here www.akdn.org/careers/1972814 and submit a resume and cover letter before July 3rd, 2022