Institute of Education

Cohort study branding

Reconnecting with young adults to plan policies for the future.

Responsible for running several of Britain’s internationally renowned birth cohort studies, the Centre for Longitudinal Studies (CLS) is an Economic and Social Research Council resource centre based at the UCL, Institute of Education, London. Its studies follow groups of people throughout their lives, collecting a wide range of information to help evaluate and develop government policy.

One of these studies, the Longitudinal Study of Young People in England (LSYPE), known as the Next Steps study, urgently needed to update its brand identity to more accurately reflect and engage the target audience of 16,000 cohort members born in England in 1989-90.

Before starting work on the identity, we commissioned independent audience research in the form of group discussions and workshops in London and Manchester. The resulting report was used to inform the brief for the new brand identity.

We then created a revitalised brand identity that would clearly explain why the study is continuing and assert its goal of making a real difference to UK society.

We retained the Next Steps name for continuity, but added a new, more meaningful strapline. The overall identity is serious in tone, but playful in its design style, using a combination of icons, infographics and statements to convey the study findings – an approach that our research deemed valuable to the cohort.

We also produced a set of guidelines, rolling out the identity to publications, templates and member packs prior to the next phase of the study.