Supporting the power of evidence

Nuffield Foundation
Branding, Publication design, Strategy

Although much has changed in the years since the Nuffield Foundation was first established, the original vision of this charitable trust remains the same: to improve social well-being by funding research and innovation in education, justice and welfare. We developed a new brand for them that pays tribute to the past and charts a course for the future.

A collage of publications in the Nuffield Foundation brand.

The Nuffield Foundation was established in 1943, a few months after the Beveridge Report had laid the foundations of the welfare state. Its founding mission – ‘the advancement of social well-being’ – continues to drive their work to this day.

A collage of images and text, based around the theme of research.

We immersed ourselves in the Foundation’s culture and existing brand, running interviews and workshops to uncover what made the organisation tick. We identified a number of key themes that spanned the Foundation’s activities and would resonate with a range of audiences, distilling them down into one core idea – the power of evidence to change lives.

An image of a parent and two children, with the text "Enable new thinking".
(Left) a timeline from a publication, (right) a publication cover with the title "Growing up digital".

At the centre of the identity is the ‘N’ frame logo, inspired by the way the Foundation connects individual projects together to give voice to a bigger story and strengthen collective impact. This powerful connecting role became the guiding principle for the development of their new visual identity. 

A close-up view of the Nuffield Foundation logo, showing the alignment of the text and frame elements.

As an ever-changing expression, the frame device signals that the Foundation is open to new ideas and not afraid to experiment. It’s present in the details both big and small, with the same core running through all brand assets, from icons to data visualisations.

As well as establishing a new positioning for the main organisation, we developed a modern and flexible brand architecture to bring together their range of sub-brands – one that could also serve as a model for future growth.

A strategic goal from the brand guidelines: "Strategic goal two - evidence, data and digital society: We will work to improve the accessibility, use, and collection of the evidence and data necessary to understand the issues affecting people's life chances. We will consider the broader implications of a digital society".
A collage of inside pages from the brand guidelines.

The reimagined colour palette is a nod to the Foundation’s heritage, inspired by the iconic colours of the vehicles produced by Morris Motors (the business established by the Foundation’s creator, Lord Nuffield). The result is a colourful, flexible system that feels approachable and playful, yet rigorous and clear.

A collage of inside pages from Nuffield Foundation publications.

We continue to work with the Foundation as they begin this next chapter, helping bring this living identity to life across all channels and touchpoints, including their flagship Annual Report.

A stack of Annual Reports from 2018.
A collage of inside pages from Nuffield Foundation publications, focusing on an infographics page.
A collage of inside pages from Nuffield Foundation publications, focusing on a text-led page with an extract.

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