A new kind of dynamic identity


The Tow Center for Digital Journalism, part of the Graduate School of Journalism at Columbia University, explores how the development of technology is changing journalism, its practice and its consumption. Last year, we launched a new identity for the Center based on a radical idea - what if the logo itself analyzed journalism and morphed based on current activity in the industry? 

Fitting within the overall Columbia visual identity system, the addition of a multicolored 'heart' creates a unique visual identifier, embodying the constant evolution of the industry and referencing the overlap of disciplines and topics relevant to digital journalism.


But even more, the 'heart' is designed to dynamically change in electronic settings - reacting to and communicating real-time data on digital journalism, becoming a live infographic. This dynamic, informative approach reflects the Tow Center's place at the center of this rapidly-changing field, communicating their commitment to being the pre-eminent resource on digital journalism.

Each ring represents a different news topic. The size of each ring is determined by the amount of digital activity for that topic at that point in time, with the data pulled from three live sources and plotted along three axes: content generation, consumption, and discussion.


The Center is working to build the live real-time app, which will build an archive over time of major current events and how their influences were felt across the web.


The live version is intended to for display on the campus.


The result is an ever-shifting identity that mirrors the industry itself. Multiple versions of the static logo were created for internal and external use in various configurations, with an artwork "configurator" delivered to allow easy generation of print-ready artwork for static applications.




We also just re-launched their website, based on another uniquely digital premise - which we will detail in a future post.