Cortico · Remote - US
Political, media, and technological forces have driven us into isolated, like-minded camps hostile toward outside views and ripe for the spread of misinformation, mischaracterization of others, hateful discourse, and even violence. The loudest, most extreme voices now dominate the public sphere, stifling nuanced communication that might otherwise bridge ever-widening divides in our democracy. The deterioration of social and institutional trust is accelerating.
To build trust and strengthen our democracy, we need new communication spaces where constructive public dialogue can thrive. Social media networks offer little hope in fostering understanding, deliberation, and collaboration among people due to a lack of real human connection. Local in-person forums such as town halls and open meetings also fall short as civic spaces, attracting the “usual voices” of the same committed activists in what are often symbolic, yet ineffective efforts to capture real community input.
Cortico is looking for a product manager to help us build the Local Voices Network (LVN), a new kind of social dialogue network. Our aim is to combine the depth and nuance of in-person dialogue with the power and scale of digital social networks to bridge divides and build trust among people. LVN does this through the combination of state-of-the-art digital technology (intuitive interactive interfaces, digital social networks, AI, speech and language analytics) combined with time-proven practices for constructive, face-to-face human interaction. The role is critically important to the success of Cortico’s strategic technology development, and is best suited for someone who is interested in leveraging their experience growing online platforms to help improve the state of meaningful discourse and social fragmentation in America.
You’ll be working on our online platform that supports community organizations, journalists, policymakers, and citizens in gathering people together for constructive dialogue, amplifying voices from these conversations to a wider audience, and making sense of large collections of public conversation data. You’ll be reporting to our CEO and collaborating closely with our engineering and partnership teams as well as designers, technologists and researchers at MIT’s Center for Constructive Communication. This role will be responsible for growing and maturing the LVN platform; managing and executing on the core product roadmap while working with smaller prototype teams based at MIT to explore and evaluate new pathways for the product.
Candidates should have experience and/or interest in working on an ambitious product that touches an expansive and often overlapping set of topics, including: online communities & discourse, social media, data privacy and stewardship, AI & machine learning, natural language processing, accessibility, community organizing, data visualization, and hardware development. We’re a unique organization building a unique product at a time when there’s never been a clearer need for equitable and transparent digital civic infrastructure.
A note about culture
Cortico’s team is kind, collaborative, inquisitive, and inclusive. We approach our mission and work with ambition, making concrete progress today while imagining the possibilities of tomorrow. We have high standards for quality and ethics, and help each other learn in order to reach our objectives. We think technology and organizations are best built by teams with a diversity of background, thought, and experience. Every team member is a human first, and we strive to create a culture and environment that supports your career goals and respects all of the hats you wear in life, not just the ones that earn you a paycheck.
Qualities we’re looking for
- You’ve read about our mission and values and they strongly align with yours.
- You’re passionate about the problems we’re working on.
- You value an iterative and inclusive approach to product management.
- You know when to make data-driven decisions, and when not to.
- You’re a champion of clean, accessible and intuitive design.
- You understand that communication, organization, and execution are the foundational skills of an effective product person, not domain knowledge.
- You’re opinionated about technology and its application in the real world.
- You value accountability, equity and transparency in your work style and seek to design these values into the products you build.
- At least 3 years of experience as a product manager building and shipping technology products at scale in collaboration with engineers, designers, and end users.
- Adept at collecting all of the information needed to make difficult prioritization decisions.
- Deep curiosity and empathy for end-users — you love building products successfully that make people feel joy, delight and trust.
- Experience collecting and synthesizing user feedback either solo or in partnership with a UX researcher or designer.
- Strong influence and cross-functional collaboration skills; able to create clarity and drive focus in complex and dynamic contexts.
- Excellent and flexible communication skills. You know when to dig into specifics regarding trade-offs for an engineering decision but can also engage with stakeholders about the status and vision of a project.
- Ability to quickly sketch/wireframe UI concepts.
- Strong understanding of visual design and user experience.
- Ability to quickly learn, retain lessons and adapt to a wide variety of challenges and asks from the team.
Please send an email to [email protected] with the subject line "Product Manager - Tech Jobs For Good" and the following information:
- A little about you and your interest in the role
- A resumé / cv
If you are unsure if you are qualified please consider applying anyway.
We aim to review and respond to all applicants within three weeks of submission. We’ll schedule a short phone call with the hiring manager to set expectations and make sure we’re all on the same page about the role and your qualifications. You’ll be asked to do a time bound product assignment that is intended to give you a sense of the types of work you may encounter in the role and give us a sense of how you approach problem solving. We will not give you an assignment that is for a product or feature we are intending to build. We’ll schedule a zoom meeting with the hiring team where we’ll review your assignment together and have you present a product you’ve worked on in the past. Then, we’ll hold a series of interviews with members of our engineering, partnership, and prototype teams. Finally, you’ll meet with our CEO and have the chance to connect with any staff member at Cortico privately to meet folks from other roles and get any questions answered about the inner workings of the organization.
Cortico was created in 2017 out of a desire to transform our polarized and toxic national discourse into a thriving public sphere. As we built the organization beginning with deep expertise in media and technology, we realized that building a healthier public sphere would require not just software and data analytics, but also hardware and technologies for community building. The Local Voices Network was born of the understanding that it is not enough to understand existing behavior and attitudes; in order to affect the health of the public sphere – and our democracy – we must create experiences of meaningful encounters, deeper understanding, and opportunities to surface new possibilities.
Cortico maintains a strong policy of equal opportunity in employment. It is our objective to recruit, hire, and retain the most qualified individuals without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation or identity, national origin, age, disability, veteran status, or any other characteristic or status protected by applicable federal, state, or local law. Our equal employment philosophy applies to all aspects of employment, including recruitment, compensation, benefits, training, promotions, transfers, job benefits, and terminations.