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Issue 1844 (PDF)
The student newspaper of Imperial College London

Keep the Cat Free

‘Imperial is a teenage maths tutor,’ declares new College brand guidance

Yes, the website really says that.

Photo: Rolando Charles for Felix


in Issue 1844

Imperial has issued guidance on how its new brand should be used, featuring descriptions of its ‘language persona’ (‘The Science Storyteller’), ‘brand archetypes’ (‘Sage’, ‘Explorer’, and ‘Artist’), and advice on creating promotional material.

‘Imperial is a nursery school, a teenage maths tutor, and an executive education programme,’ says a section outlining the university’s ‘narrative’.

Elsewhere in the brand guidance, a section expounding Imperial’s ‘desire to pursue truth’ asks: ‘What’s that mould in my petri dish?’. The question is one of four that Imperial’s website claims reveal ‘the challenges, and even the triumph of our entire species’.

Whats That Mould In My Petri Dish Photo: Imperial College London, accessed 29/02/2024

The website originally suggested that use of Imperial’s crest in full colour was forbidden but appears to have been hastily updated following an email from Felix on Wednesday.

Until then, the guidelines said that degree certificates, sports kit, merchandise and all other branding using the coat of arms ‘must be used in Imperial Blue, white or black’. The written guidance was accompanied by an example of a two-coloured crest.

In 2020, Imperial stopped displaying its motto (‘Scientific knowledge, the crowning glory and the safeguard of the empire’) on the crest, amid increased scrutiny of its links to British Empire.

Another section presents the College’s two colour moods, with suggested pairings. ‘Mood 1’ is ‘Calm, Scientific, Trustworthy’, and ‘Mood 2’ is ‘Bold, Forward looking’.

Imperial Mood
Choose your fighter: a graphic from Imperial's new brand guidelines website outlining the College's two 'moods'

A spokesperson for Imperial’s brand project said: “We have developed a modern, confident, and expressive visual and verbal identity, rooted in our science heritage. Both elements articulate Imperial’s purpose and vision, our strengths and impact, while seeking to differentiate us in a crowded and competitive landscape.”

College members can explore the brand guidelines in full here. Tag us on Instagram (@felix_imperial) if you find anything interesting!

12 Brand Archetypes Photo: Imperial College London
The College’s brand guidance includes this image, a wheel of psychoanalyst Carl Jung’s 12 ‘brand archetypes’. Tag yourself, Imperial is ‘Sage’, ‘Explorer’, and ‘Artist’.

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