Spotlighting best practices for city leaders: C40 Inclusive Climate Action study

Background: The C40 Cities Inclusive Climate Action programme provided a best-practice knowledge resource for city Mayors. The case study aimed to showcase actions that jointly tackle climate change and social inequities. The project’s primary research included a series of interviews with city representatives from a variety of places and socio-economic contexts.

Role: Social Research & Communications Lead

  • Rob synthesised interviews and highlighted key learnings as visually-rich stories within a guidebook designed for city leaders.
  • Following the guidebook design, communications materials of the resource were produced to be distributed via digital channels to maximise its reach and shareability.

Impact: The Inclusive Climate Action in Practice guidebook increased the impact and broadened the reach of traditionally inaccessible urban development resources. Positive client feedback described the guidebook as subsequently becoming C40’s “gold standard” for all other guidance resources for city majors.

An equitable future for (and by) 10 million Angelenos: LA Countywide Sustainability Plan

Background: The LA Countywide Sustainability Plan aimed to identify a comprehensive set of the most pressing issues in the region and to set out a bold action plan to tackle them. One of the strategic outreach and involvement challenges required by the LA County Chief Sustainability Office (CSO) was to equitably appeal to the county’s 10 million diverse residents through the plan.

Role: Brand identity design; project visioning workshop facilitation; communications and messaging strategy; website design; and stakeholder engagement.

Design research question: “It’s not just what you say; it’s how you say it”. How might a communications and messaging strategy help to enable the countywide sustainability plan to resonate with a broader spectrum of people and their values?

Response: During the first stage, we sought to understand the project’s cultural identity through contextual research during visits to the county. These observations formed the basis of workshop materials for an exploratory brand visioning workshop during which we facilitated project stakeholders and partners to explore values that resonated with them and the County at large. The synthesised workshop outputs informed the design of a suite of communication and messaging materials for a variety of in-person and virtual channels, which included an interactive project information website, workshop materials for consultation sessions, and a brand and writing training guide.

Impact: With an ‘equity-meets-design’ approach and both inclusive and accessible in-person and virtual methods, the project bridged the complexities of LA’s broad and diverse audiences. Ultimately, the Plan enhanced the voices and influence of Angeleños and received the NLA Sustainable Communities award.

For more: see the article featured on burohappold.com or visit the project information site.


Supporting the future leaders of the built environment: Happold Foundation branding

Overview: A brand identity and website design for The Happold Foundation.

Background: A non-profit organisation that uses engineering skills and experience to make a positive impact on people’s lives by building and supporting a global network of young people, educators and researchers in the built environment sector.

Response: The brand identity and website were designed to express the foundation’s bold, curious and pragmatic approach to promoting how engineering can improve the built environment for all.

Six unique colleges within one cohesive university brand: UAL digital product design

Background: The University of the Arts London (UAL), Europe’s largest arts and design university, partnered with Pentagram to redesign its brand and website. The project aimed to unify the competing identities of UAL’s six colleges within one brand and online presence while giving each a platform to showcase their own unique characters.

Role: Brand & Digital Product Designer

  • Conducted user research in stakeholder workshops to understand the individual digital experience needs and challenges of the six colleges.
  • Collaborated with developers to understand technical constraints and with visual designers to develop a compelling identity, information architecture, design systems, wireframes, and user journey flows.
  • Formulated a strategy to uphold each college’s unique character, achieve their key priorities and attract target audiences online.
  • Conducted usability testing to refine the designs based on feedback.

Impact: The meticulous research, rapid prototyping, and user testing led to an engaging and user-friendly digital experience for stakeholders. The brand and website reflect the unique character of each college, while also conveying the shared values and identity of the university as a whole. The university’s satisfaction rate has since increased by over 6%, and its ranking has improved, moving up 5 places to enter the country’s top 10.

University of the Arts London Website

A new mark for an old friend: Japan Society

The UK’s leading body dedicated to enhancing the relationship between Britain and Japan embarked on a comprehensive rebranding project. The project revitalized its visual identity, logo, print materials, and website. With a membership base of over 1000 people, the society organizes numerous events and provides a wide range of resources to promote deep and lasting understanding between the two countries.

The rebranding process involved a strategic approach to effectively represent the society’s mission and values. The visual identity received a modern update, capturing the essence of the organization’s commitment to fostering a strong relationship between Britain and Japan. The new logo design symbolizes the harmonious connection between the two nations and serves as a visual representation of the society’s purpose.

The website underwent a comprehensive transformation, which included information architecture to enhance usability, content planning to deliver relevant and engaging information, and user interface design to provide an easy and visually appealing user experience.

The fresh visual identity and website positioned the society to continue its impactful work, attract new members, and reflect its commitment as the primary facilitator of cultural and business exchange between Britain and Japan.