University of Westminster

Redefining the experience of a leading university

Where did we start?

Founded in 1838 as the UK’s first polytechnic, and now with more than 22,000 students on sites spread across central London. The University of Westminster was proud of its long history and size but lacking a consistent story to tell. The new Vice Chancellor led a staff committed to their particular departments, but disengaged from the University as a whole. Students felt they represented the diversity of a world city, yet lacked a sense of coherent campus life. Their visual identity and communications were inconsistent and hampered by a proliferation of sub-brands.

What did we do?

We undertook an internal and external perception study, seeking the views of students, staff and external stakeholders. We developed a brand which defined the experience offered by Westminster: ‘a vibrant learning environment fostering innovation and creativity’; the unifying idea - ‘shaping the future of professional life’ - encapsulates what every part of the University does and what study needs to deliver in the 21st century.

What's the impact?

The new visual identity clarifies the relationship between the University and its many departments and services. The new brand’s tone of voice is integral to the design: key words and expressions are embraced by ‘University’ and ‘of Westminster’. The simplified portcullis was retained in the logo, announcing Westminster’s proud position in the heart of London and the world.

“Jane Wentworth Associates understood the issues faced by the different cultures within the university and were not afraid to confront the difficult questions we had to answer to redefine our brand for the 21st century. They also helped us make sense of a complex and unruly collection of sub-brands – no mean feat.”

Sarah Carthew, Former Director of Marketing, Communications and Development, University of Westminster

Design: Hat-trick Design