University of Chicago Gagliardi Group: Establishing a Brand Identity
In 2021, Clarity completed and launched a website design on behalf of University of Chicago Gagliardi Group, a collective comprised of graduate and postdoctoral research fellows engaged in molecular chemistry and engineering.
Due to our experience working with clients such as the Cook County Assessor’s Office, Clarity went into the project with experience creating new logos, branding, colors, and design elements. We knew how to establish a brand identity. But there was a caveat: we had to work within existing brand guidelines while also establishing an identity that could outlast the Group’s affiliation with University of Chicago.
Identifying the Needs
As a semi-independent research group within University of Chicago’s Department of Chemistry, the Gagliardi Group conducts research in the global scientific community and engages with other non-academic sectors, funding agencies, and recruits. As a result, the Group has a public-facing aspect, in which its website plays a critical role for its broader community engagement, promotion, and branding.
The original site design had no Gagliardi Group-specific brand identity. So the new site needed it all: an independent logo, branding, colors, and niche, customized design elements.
Most importantly, the new design elements needed to strike a balance. They needed to carve out an identity while still following current, University of Chicago guidelines.
Maroon is the University of Chicago’s signature color. We added Teal as a unique element of the Gagliardi brand.
The technical goals included a site overhaul, including design, user interface, and user experience updates such as new layout, navigation, and images. The new site needed to be more appealing to the specific, intended audiences:
- Prospective graduate students/fellows
- Greater university
- Granting entities
- Partner groups/institutions
The specific University of Chicago branding guidelines were minimal. This left room to add visual appeal and unique branding.