For a new library in Kenya’s largest slum: 3,800 books, and hope

Story, Photos and Video by Ron Reason




NYT Editor Dean Baquet on longform’s future, the Apple Watch, sending reporters into war

New York Times Executive Editor Dean Baquet spent Thursday, April 16, 2015 speaking with the School of Journalism at the University of Montana and the Missoula community. Students in our course “J494: Critical Thinking About Design and Disruption” were honored to host him for a lengthy conversation about innovation and disruption at the Times.  Following are highlights […]




4 big ways the NYTimes is helping us teach ‘design and disruption’

Manhattan meets Montana: With great help from Times staff, we have a front row seat to study news media innovation, leadership, risk and hope By Ron Reason Several months of discussing innovation and change at The New York Times culminates this Thursday for our class, “Critical Thinking About Design and Disruption,” when Times Executive Editor Dean Baquet comes to campus as […]




He wears pink socks: A Dean Baquet/ NYTimes reading list for UMJSchool

Hebdo, Abramson, innovation, diversity, mobile, Magazine, multimedia: Studying up on an esteemed visitor, his company In advance of this Thursday’s visit to the University of Montana School of Journalism by Dean Baquet, Executive Editor of The New York Times, students in a variety of classes including J494: The Pollner Seminar, Critical Thinking About Design and Disruption […]




Newspaper redesign tips: Converting broadsheets to narrow web widths

Converting broadsheet newspapers to narrower web widths isn’t simply a matter of putting your existing design mix into a smaller shape. I’ve worked with newspaper clients since 1996 to design for narrower web widths, from The Dallas Morning News and Orlando Sentinel, to most recently, the Brunswick (Ga.) News. In every case, we’ve realized that the […]




Launching today: A new Crain’s Detroit Business for a new Detroit

[The relaunch issue cover, and a Special Report opener inside.]




U Montana’s Pollner professorship in journalism: advice, tips, resources

The Pollner Distinguished Professorships at the University of Montana School of Journalism present an exciting, unique opportunity for professional journalists (or “news media experts,” if you want to look beyond writers, editors or photographers) to take a career break and make a big difference. The one-semester posts carry a generous $40,000 stipend. The application period is typically closes end of […]




Want a more creative publication? Skilled staff? Conduct art classes

Often the road to redesign brings happy surprises (beyond, one hopes, a smart looking publication). Prototyping and other goal-setting can suggest workflow restructuring, clarification of roles and responsibilities, and training needs. All came about at our redesign this spring of Crain’s Detroit Business, where redesign project manager Pierrette Dagg was promoted to Creative Services Director shortly before the relaunch. She […]




Making a difference in Africa: 3 women share their passion for reaching out

[This post was originally published in 2008 on my now archived travel blog, and has been revised for sharing with my class at the University of Montana, as many students were interested in international travel and outreach. Updates on each subject interviewed appear at the start of each segment. For a variety of other essays and collected writings […]




NYT Magazine redesign: for students, textbook “Design and Disruption”

Early word last week on the redesign/reinvention of The New York Times Magazine gave a good indication this wouldn’t be just a cosmetic exercise, a shuffling around of fonts with a few new editorial features. Instantly I suspected this would offer great lessons for the coming week for my class, “Critical Thinking About Design and […]