Justin Ferrell

Fellowships Director, Hasso Plattner Institute of Design at Stanford (aka, the d.school)


Justin Ferrell is the fellowships director of the d.school, known formally as the Hasso Plattner Institute of Design at Stanford. A career journalist specializing in design and organizational change, Justin worked for the last seven years at The Washington Post, most recently as the director of digital, mobile & new product design. He introduced mobile designers and programmers to The Post’s newsroom, where his team was responsible for the design of washingtonpost.com, its mobile site, and its applications for iOS and Android. A prolific storyteller, Justin has designed several award-winning projects — including the investigation “Angler: The Cheney Vice Presidency,” winner of the Pulitzer Prize for National Reporting. He has spoken on leadership, collaboration and prototyping in many venues, from the SXSW Interactive festival to Education City in Doha, Qatar. A Knight fellow alum, Justin also teaches executive education at the Stanford Graduate School of Business, and his freelance clients have included IDEO and Citi Ventures.


  • Saturday, 3:30 pm
    Garden Room A-B

    Unconference Session – Innovation and Trends in Video Storytelling

    More of a conversation than presentation, let’s get together and share some of the cool ways we’re using video to tell stories.

  • Saturday, 2:15 pm
    Garden Room A-B

    Unconference Session – How Do We Keep the “Story” in Alternate Story Form?

    Do we lose narratives with alternate story forms? Where's the context? This session encourages discussion about what works and what doesn't.

  • Saturday, 11:30 am
    Garden Room A-B

    Unconference Session – Is Tumblr the New Time, Inc.?

    Are journalists’ future homes in places that aren’t primarily about journalism, and should it be?

  • Thursday, 9:00 am
    Hospitality Room

    Intro to Design Thinking

    This session will be led by staff of Stanford’s world-renowned Hasso M. Plattner Institute of Design — commonly called the d.school.

  • Thursday, 9:15 am
    Grand Ballroom B, Garden Room AB

    Law School for Digital Journalists

    A full day of practical training, taught by leading experts on digital media law.

  • Thursday, 4:30 pm
    Bayview A

    Entrepreneurial Pop-Ups

    Have a challenge? Work with our presenters for one-on-one consults in which they lend their expertise to help you solve your biggest struggle.

  • Thursday, 3:45 pm
    Bayview A

    The Rise of University News Startups

    J-Schools are launching news sites as outlets to teach students both reporting and entrepreneurship skills. Hear about several models that are working.

  • Thursday, 3:00 pm
    Bayview A

    Collaboration vs. Competition

    When should a news start-up partner with a mainstream news outlet? A look at collaboration models, do’s and don’ts and guerrilla marketing.

  • Thursday, 2:00 pm
    Bayview A

    Engaging Audiences

    Just because you build it doesn’t mean they will come. A discussion of the four strata of engagement and successful engagement strategies.

  • Thursday, 1:15 pm
    Bayview A

    The Art of the Close

    Journalists are great at producing content and covering stories. Ask them to sell an ad, though, and generally they can’t close the deal.