Joe Gebbia is a multi-disciplinary designer, creative entrepreneur, and global explorer. He is the co-founder and CPO of Airbnb, which began in 2008 out of the necessity to pay his rent. What started as three airbeds, a pop-tart breakfast, welcoming hosts and an insider’s guide to the city, is now a global phenomenon of hospitality, human connectivity and economic stimulation. 

Gebbia works across a variety of disciplines including industrial design, print, and digital experiences. With an eye for simplicity and an appreciation of craft, he leads the team in creating imminently marketable products. The results are cutting edge yet useful tools that impact the user’s experience from the moment of online contact to the end of their physical stay in Airbnb listings around the world.

Crafting a cohesive experience from online to offline is at the core of the Airbnb business model. Gebbia is dedicated to creating a magical and effortless user experience through sharp, intuitive design, while crafting a product roadmap that leads to such an experience. Under his leadership, Airbnb is now at the forefront of the emerging discipline of service design, a practice that improves the quality of interactions between service providers and their customers. Gebbia's lifelong appreciation for art and design led him to the Rhode Island School of Design (RISD), where he now sits on the Board of Trustees. There, he honed his conceptual skills while obtaining degrees in product design and graphic design.

While studying in the Northeast, Gebbia complimented his creative pursuits and studies at RISD with business coursework at Brown University and MIT. Influenced by the work of Jean Prouve, Charles and Ray Eames, and the Bauhaus movement, Gebbia has long been immersed in the art of designing for the human experience.

After moving to San Francisco from Providence, Rhode Island, Gebbia worked as a designer for Chronicle Books where he experienced first-hand how a design-led business worked, department by department. The culmination of these ideas and experiences came to fruition in 2008, when he co-founded Airbnb with Brian Chesky and Nathan Blecharczyk. What began in an apartment in San Francisco during an IDSA conference has spread to 30,000 cities in over 192 countries, creating a new economy for hundreds of thousands of people around the world.


Rhode Island School of Design, Providence, RI (2000 - 2005) 

BFA Industrial Design

BFA Graphic Design

Brown University, Providence, RI (2001 - 2005) 

Liberal Arts Studies

MIT Sloan School of Business, Boston, MA (2004) 

Joint Course 'Product Design and Development'

Speaking Engagements – contact joe dot gebbia at

TED (Vancouver, Feb 2016)

Inc. Magazine GrowCo (Nashville, April 2015)

Clinton Global Initiative (New York City, Sept 2014)

KPCB @ Fuseproject (San Francisco, June 2014)

Giga OM RoadMap (San Francisco, Nov 2013) 

Feast Conference (New York City, Oct 2103) 

Brooklyn Beta (New York City, Oct 2013) 

Fast Company Innovation By Design (New York City, Oct 2013) 

Smart Cloud Show (Seoul, July 2013) 

Dwell on Design (Los Angeles, June 2013) 

LeWeb (London, June 2013) 

Financial Times (London, June 2013) 

Wired NextFest (Milan, June 2013) 

99% Conference (NYC, May 2013)

First Round Capital Design Speaker Series (San Francisco, May 2013) 

AIGA Designer + Founders (San Francisco, May 2013) 

Alternative Design Careers @ Harvard GSD (Cambridge, Feb 2013) 

DLD Conference (Munich, Jan 2013)

Commonwealth Club (San Francisco, Jan 2013)

FastCompany Innovation Uncensored (San Francisco, Nov 2012)

GigaOm 'Design in the Connected Age' (San Francisco, Nov 2012)

PSFK Conference (San Francisco, Oct 2012)

RISD Entrepreneur Mindshare (Providence, Oct 2012)

The Next Web, Keynote (Amsterdam, April 2012)

SXSW (Austin, March 2012)

Pecha Kucha (Tokyo, Dec 2011)

Y-Combinator (NYC, Oct 2011)

PSFK Conference (San Francisco, Oct 2011)

Inman Real Estate Connect (San Francisco, July 2011)

GigaOm GreenNet (San Francisco, April 2011)

PSFK Conference (New York, April 2011)

Pecha Kucha (San Francisco, March 2011)

Rhode Island School of Design, Freshman class (Providence, 2010)

Haas School of Business, University of California Berkeley (Berkeley, April 2010)

Student Day 2010 Hosted by IIDA & ASID (Portland, Feb 2010) 

Bootstrapping Before Professional Money, Propel ICT (August 2009)

NeoCon Student Keynote (Chicago, June 2009) 

Pecha Kucha (San Francisco, Nov 2007)

Rhode Island School of Design, ID Dept (Providence, Oct 2007) 

Pecha Kucha (San Francisco, Oct 2007) 

IDSA MidEast Conference "Big Brands, Big Ideas" (Cincinnati, April 2007) 

Pecha Kucha (San Francisco, Feb 2007)


Icon Magazine (Jan 2017)

NPR (Oct 2016)

Inc Magazine (June 2015) 

Financial Times (April 2015) 

Inc Magazine (Nov 2014)

GQ (July 2013) 

Fortune (April 2011)

Inc Magazine (March 2011)

Forbes (Nov 2010)

Inc Magazine (July 2010)

NY Times (July 2010)

Cooper Hewitt (July 2010)

Core77 (Feb 2010)

NY Times (October 2009)

Valet Mag (October 2009)

Business Week (March 2009)

Core77 (December 2008)

Daniel Pink (October 2008)

Wall Street Journal (August 2008)

RISD Blog (June 2008)

Entrepreneur (June 2008)

USA Today (April 2008)

Dexigner (April 2008)

Designboom (April 2008)

IDSA Interview: Who's Next (March 2008)

Providence Business News (October 2007)

Innovation Magazine (January 2007)

Visao Magazine (January 2007)

ID Magazine (December 2006)

Sports Illustrated (January 2005)

Associated Press (January 2001)

Awards & Honors

Company of the Year, Inc Magazine (2014)

AIGA 'Justified' Jury (2014) 

40-under-40, Fortune Magazine (2013)

Top 50 innovative companies, FastCompany (2013) 

FastCompany Innovation by Design Jury (2013)

Trustee, Rhode Island School of Design Board of Directors (2012–present)

Top 50 innovative companies, FastCompany (2012)

Airbnb named best Mobile App, SXSW Interactive Awards (2011)

Airbnb nominated for 'Best Design', Crunchies (2011)

30-under-30, Inc Magazine (2010)

Cooper Hewitt Design Triennial (2010)

Business Week: Top 20 Best Young Tech Entrepreneurs (2009) 

Selected to Y-Combinator seed fund (2009)

Selected to Designboom NYC Exhibit (2009)

RISD Alumni Council Executive Committee (2005 - 2010) 

Selected to Designboom Sydney Exhibit (2008)

Selected to Designboom Tokyo Exhibit (2007)

Selected to Designboom NYC Exhibit (2007)

CritBuns named "Best of 2006", ID Magazine (2006) 

Selected to Chronicle Books ID Fellowship (2006)

Steven T. Mendelson Community Service Award, RISD (2005) 

Thomas A. Edison Award for Innovation, RISD Industrial Design Dept (2005) 

RISD Varisty Basketball Team, Founder & Co-captain (2000 - 2005) 

Student Leadership Scholarship, RISD (2003) 

Student Body President, RISD (2002 - 2003)

Global travel:

Brazil, Russia, Portugal, South Korea, India, Singapore, Cyprus, United Kingdom, Ireland, Denmark, Netherlands, France, Spain, Switzerland, Germany, Italy, Hungary, Mexico, Canada, Japan, Australia, Monaco, Costa Rica, Bahamas, Sweden, Austria, British Virgin Islands.