Farrah created The Difference Engine to help companies make better products and marketing by talking to real customers, face to face.

She was trained first as an "ad man" and a journalist, then as a digital creative and strategist, then as a lawyer and finally as a researcher. As a result, she brings rigor to creativity and advocacy to customers, and smashes traditions that get in the way of greater empathy and meaningful change.

She works with businesses of all sizes - from seed-stage start-ups, to the Fortune Global 500 (she's already worked with 30 of them).

She has led strategy and innovation teams at creative agencies and market research firms, and embedded with product teams as an advisor and consultant. Her experience runs across categories including media & entertainment, technology, financial services and healthcare.

In addition to leading The Difference Engine, she is a member of the faculty at Parsons in the Strategic Design & Management masters program. She is a frequent speaker on the roles of empathy and radical collaboration in teams, data and products; as well as on more iterative and immersive approaches to research in product and marketing teams.

For her complete CV, click here.

Our Preferred Partners


Our preferred partner for quantitative research and analytics is Equation Research, a full service strategic research agency working with an extensive list of Fortune 1000 clients

We have worked together on many projects, always with the same values at heart:

  • One size does not fit all - Equation believes in a tailored approach rather than tying clients to a specific methodology or model
  • Humans aren't lab rats - Equation employs innovative interviewing methods that reflect how people make choices in the real world
  • Business focus, not a research focus - Equation always stays focused on business outcomes for clients


Our preferred partner for expertise in project management, Tuxedo Monsters, Inc. is a flexible resource for companies and agencies that are experiencing a transformation, searching for clarity or looking for a hand to get them out of the weeds.

We collaborate with TMI to facilitate a full-day workshop aimed at developing better creative briefs, and co-creating a creative and strategic workflow that allows everyone in your organization to flourish and meet their goals. 

Laila Forster, the founder, excels at breaking down complex projects, visualizing a clear roadmap, cultivating deep relationships and expertly guiding her clients to success.

Kat Egan Co

Kat Egan thoughtfully and intuitively connects brands to best-in-class agencies and teams.

Together, we custom-designed the Gather workshop - a day-long immersive, intimate and inspiring roundtable with your team and fellow innovators across markets and sectors, with the goal of developing a brief for business transformation you can bring back to your organization.

As a "super connector" Kat helps businesses navigate through the noise to connect directly to effective, smart, collaborative and lasting solutions.


We partner with Shelley Sather, a Brooklyn-based ethnographer with expertise in innovation and design research. 

Her work has served to sharpen meaningful, real-world perspectives for global blue-chip clients as well as several small roll-up-your-sleeves ventures close to her heart. 

Things she's really good at:

  • Thoughtful research design 
  • Participatory + behavioral design experiment
  • Creative sample generation - experts, users, lead users, edge cases
  • Rich narrative development, through film, photography and other artifacts from the field

Svanes Kolding

The Difference Engine and Christian Svanes Kolding work in partnership to tell video-based stories that cultivate a deep sense of empathy with people. We believe good storytelling is good business. We work together to create:

  • Branded content and documentaries
  • Rapid prototypes, design fictions, proof of concept
  • Case studies and process films

Christian’s work has been presented at institutions such as the Museum of Modern Art and the Museum of The City of New York. His commercial projects include collaborations with clients such as IBM, Westin Hotels, Nokia, SYPartners, IxDA and Sandbox. His films, both documentary and fiction, have been shown in festivals across the globe.