Lead Behaviour Scientist
Common Thread
Remote job Kenya
Date Posted 04/05/2024
Application deadline 03/05/2024
Type of Position Full-time
Education Requirement Master


Contract position: Full-Time contract position, for 12 months with the possibility of extension 

Location: Globally remote, with a strong preference for candidates within UTC -/+5 timezones

Travel: 15-25%, depending on project needs, and global public health advice

Start date: As soon as possible/February 2024

Fee range: $6,000 – $7,800. This is a contractor role, which means you will be responsible for payment of all income taxes, health insurance and any other remittances that may arise, including other obligations required in your place of residence. The fee range may be extended for candidates with significant additional experience/networks.

Is this you?

This isn’t your typical pure behavioural science role. We’re looking for a dynamic, creative, and curious all-rounder in behavioural science. Keep reading if you’re someone who enjoys understanding, analysing and designing for the world’s toughest health and global development problems. You will lead teams to design research and collaborative experiences that help us create behavioural solutions that really work for the people they’re intended for. Your approach to work is energetic, positive, adaptable, and sparks joy for the team and our clients! If this sounds like you, there may be an opening with your name on it at Common Thread.

The Role

Here’s some of the exciting things you can expect to be doing as part of this role: 

    • Leading Common Thread’s Behavioural Science arm of the company, including how we approach projects and integrate the best of Beh Sci systematically into our processes, and analysing its role within the broader Social and Behaviour Change (SBC) toolkit
    • A large part of the day-to-day for this role will be leading and managing projects and client engagements, ensuring they meet our high standards for rigour, creativity, people-first approaches, and all within budgetary limitations
    • Working closely with the HCD, Design and our entire multidisciplinary team at Common Thread to define and implement Common Thread’s approach to Behavioural Design
    • Identifying and applying a rigorous application of behavioural science principles, tools and innovative approaches to project design, research and implementation
    • Refining, maintaining and applying Common Thread’s Behavioural Model, including the research methodologies and tools within it
    • Bringing together diverse viewpoints and data sources to co-create creative, evidence-based and pragmatic solutions. This will include designing mixed methods research, with a focus on both qualitative and quantitative methods
    • Conducting or coordinating in-field research (qualitative and quantitative)
    • Managing others on the Behavioural Science/Design team, providing supportive guidance and feedback and fostering a safe, effective and inclusive work culture 
    • Working closely with Common Thread Leadership and partners to shape the growth and future of the company, including contribution to Business Development and leading Common Thread’s thought leadership in Behavioural Science and its contribution to Behavioural Design

What we’re looking for 

This role requires these skills: 

    • 7 -10 years experience leading and implementing behavioural science research and interventions
    • A Masters Degree in Psychology, Behavioural Science, Anthropology, or similar degree – or an equivalent mix of education, experience and training in the behavioural science field.
    • International experience, especially in the Global South. Being based in the Global South is an advantage for this position.
    • Experience working in multilateral agencies and foundations. Experience with United Nations agencies is highly desirable
    • Experience working in or for users in the Global South
    • Strong project and client management skills
    • Highly skilled and dynamic facilitator of workshops, user research and design research processes 
    • Experience applying and testing behavioural science learnings to complex environments 
    • In-depth understanding of behavioural science (BehSci) principles and their application to public health and development 
    • An enthusiastic ambassador for the value, effectiveness and process of BehSci, and transferring this excitement and skills to others
    • Experience designing a system that measures and demonstrates the impact of Behavioural Science
    • A high level of digital literacy and excellent communication skills. Able to use online collaboration and project management tools to effectively work with a remote team
    • Fluency in English with additional language skills. French is strongly desired

The characteristics and values we’re looking for:

    • Ability to work as a “Manager of One”; you are highly independent and can build goals and execute on them independently 
    • You are mission driven and passionate about applying your skills and time towards improving the lives of others, particularly those who are most vulnerable
    • You have a growth mindset – you are curious, have a passion for learning, and see feedback as an opportunity to learn and grow
    • Leadership and Management –  you are able to contribute to the growth and vision of the organisation,  give clear and constructive feedback, build strong, supportive relationships with those you work with, and ensure your team are able to grow and thrive in their roles, if/when under your leadership

Not so fun fact: Research shows that while men apply to jobs when they meet an average of 60% of the criteria, women and other marginalised folks tend to only apply when they check every box. Think you have what it takes, but don’t meet all the criteria? Please apply anyway. We’d love to talk and determine together whether you could be a great fit! 

Common Thread is an equal opportunity company, and we value diverse voices, backgrounds, and perspectives on our team. We don’t discriminate based on race, religion, colour, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, age, or status as an individual with a disability. 

Who we are 

We are a curious and creative bunch of experts and innovators who share in the belief that a change in behaviour can change the world. We believe that human behaviour—however illogical—is never a fault or a flaw. It’s a feature. We seek to understand it. We see people as a critical, yet too often ignored part of successful health initiatives. Our clients include the world’s leading organisations in public health, international development, and philanthropy. By connecting behavioural insights with community insights, we design public health solutions rooted in the social and cultural minutiae of communities across the globe.

How we work

We’re a virtual company, based across multiple time zones and countries. All our team members are contractors who have the flexibility to choose where they live, though we commit to a core block of hours when everyone can be collaborating.  Strong communication and collaboration skills are essential to success in this role! We search hard for creative team players who can work independently, but also collaborate with a talented team, learn together, and design powerful behavioural solutions that blend the best of human-centred design, behavioural science, anthropology, marketing and other disciplines. 

What we offer

As a Lead Behavioural Scientist at Common Thread we offer a pay range from $6,000 to $7,800 per month, based on skills and expertise. This is a contractor role, which means you will be responsible for payment of all income taxes, health insurance and any other remittances that may arise, including other obligations required in your place of residence.


  • Flexible working hours and location. You may design your hours, and work from a location of your choice, provided you are available during the company’s “golden hours” (12-4pm GMT)
  • An annual bonus target for all full time, 12 month contractors that can amount to up to 15% of your annual earnings, depending on individual and company performance. 
  • We offer our Core Team members 20 days of paid time off and 7 days of national holidays, based on your place of residence. 
  • We are constantly listening and responding to our team’s needs. For example, where possible Common Thread offers one additional paid week during the December holiday season and for the past two years, we have experimented with reduced summer hours (4.5 day week in July/August).
  • We aim to hold a global retreat once a year, where we all come together in a beautiful part of the world. 
  • Professional development stipend for professional growth opportunities
  • A wellbeing stipend to help cover the costs for something you feel could help you maintain your health, balance and vigour (paid annually, available after 1 year at CT)
  • Accrual of additional paid time off after 3 years of being on our team