Lead Experience Researcher, DLS

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What Airbnb is looking for in applicants

Airbnb is a mission-driven company dedicated to helping create a world where anyone can belong anywhere. It takes a unified team committed to our core values to achieve this goal. Airbnb's various functions embody the company's innovative spirit and our fast-moving team is committed to leading as a 21st century company.

About the team

We build the DLS, Airbnb's Design Language System, as well as UI frameworks that help product teams ship high-quality UI quickly and create awesome user experiences. 

Research skills

We are looking for a lead researcher to drive research for all things DLS. As a member of this team, you will focus on both end users who interact with our products as well as internal users of DLS who help create these amazing experiences for our end users. This researcher should be experienced with a variety of qualitative research methods, including user interviews, usability testing, literature reviews, and card sorting. Additionally, this researcher should be comfortable creating and analyzing surveys. 


  • Responsible for end-user, iterative design research on the full stack building blocks that make up the core system of DL encompassing design primitives, components and patterns.
  • Provide strategic recommendations on how to localize design and icons for a global audience
  • Pioneer new methods for research of design systems to understand country specific design systems
  • Responsible for internal research to ensure adoption of DLS system, including documentation
  • Provide strategic guidance on internal product development opportunities and design refinement
  • Conduct research to identify ways to improve designer and engineer workflows, including coordination with production design
  • Create robust research programs to collect findings from around the company to inform changes made to DLS


  • Masters or PhD in Human-Computer Interaction, Sociology, Psychology, Information Science, Computer Science (or similar), or equivalent experience.
  • 3+ years industry experience
  • Experience using both qualitative and quantitative research methodologies
  • Experience managing research projects in partnership with cross-functional teams
  • Familiarity with developing or using frameworks to align cross-functional teams
  • Strong collaboration and communication skills
  • Strong storytelling skills and an ability to frame insights into compelling narratives
  • Track record of translating research insights into business impact

Bonus experience

  • Degree in Human-Computer Interaction, Sociology, Psychology, Anthropology, Cognitive Sciences, or equivalent practical experience.
  • Experience with cross-cultural products and international research
  • Experience designing and facilitating engaging and impactful workshops (for stakeholders and/or research participants)

The starting base pay for this role is between $124,000 and $171,500. The actual base pay is dependent upon many factors, such as: education, experience, and skills. The base pay range is subject to change and may be modified in the future. This role may also be eligible for bonus, equity, benefits, and Employee Travel Credits.

Want some tips on how to get an interview at Airbnb?

What is Airbnb looking for?
If this role looks interesting to you, a great first step is to understand what excites you about the team, product or mission. Take your time thinking about this and then tell the team! Get in touch and communicate that passion.
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How to land an interview at Lead Experience Researcher?
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