From Redesign to Relaunch: The Fresh Face of The Farr Institute

Published on: 13th April 2016

By Cherry Martin
Communications Manager, The Farr Institute

Since March 2013, when a consortium of ten funders made a £17.5m research award to develop four Centres of Excellence, The Farr Institute has been dedicated to improving the health and care of populations by conducting cutting-edge eHealth informatics research. With foundations built firmly in England, Scotland and Wales, the Institute has evolved from four founding Centres (CIPHER, HeRC, London and Scotland) to a truly networked UK-wide institute.

In creating the infrastructure for cross-sector collaboration, developing a broader research community and harnessing expertise from across government, public sector, academia and industry, The Farr Institute’s Centres have formed the cornerstones of a research network tasked with optimizing the safe and trusted use of clinical, environment and population data in health research.

A recent and significant step in representing the Institute as a single entity has been the redesign of farrinstitute.org. The previous website was host to four separate user areas which showcased the work and activities of each Centre. In an effort to unify The Farr Institute brand and to truly represent the nationwide and cross-Centre approach to the Institute’s research and activities, the content, format and navigation of the former website was rigorously restructured to positon The Farr Institute as a single, distributed organisation.

Creating a public-friendly website accessible to the lay reader was crucial to the brief for this project. While communicating the public benefits of using data in research and articulating how this is done at The Farr Institute, it was important to provide a platform to demonstrate the Institute’s dedication to public opinion and engagement through initiatives such as the #datasaveslives campaign and the 100 Ways of Using Data to Make Lives Better case study series.

The project was led by the Institute’s Network team and was managed by Edinburgh design agency Firefly who are based in Leith, home to a dynamic community of some of the capital’s most creative companies.

Reflecting on the project, Ben Walker, Creative Director at Firefly said: “We were delighted to have the opportunity to work with The Farr Institute to develop their branding and website design. The new design needed to be responsive. It needed to convey more clearly what The Farr Institute do, and we needed to improve the user experience through a more logical navigation structure.

“As well as research, education and public engagement, giving focus to the news, events and social media sections helped to make the site more appealing to a public audience and making use of images and videos brought it to life.

Talking about the creativity and inspiration behind the new website, Ben said: “We introduced bespoke icon styles and connected patterns to the branding that branched out of the original ‘joining the dots’ concept, inspired by the existing logo design. This, coupled with the use of colour and typography, gave a fresh, modern face to The Farr Institute brand, making the design more engaging, inviting and appealing to both the public and professionals alike.

“The use of colour coding helps to structure the different categories and a ‘mega-navigation’ enables users to access information on the site simply and quickly. The responsive design of the new website ensures that the user experience is optimized across all devices – desktop, tablet and mobile.

“The website has been designed to be ‘future proof’ and has been built with a WordPress content management system allowing The Farr Institute complete control over content and the ability to easily add new pages and functionality.”

The new Farr Institute website was launched on 13 April 2016.

If you have any questions or comments about the new site or would like to discuss a future feature article, please contact cherry.martin@ed.ac.uk.

Find out more about Firefly at www.firefly-uk.com

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