IEEE Branding Projects

The Scenario

IEEE is the trusted voice for engineering, computing, and technology information around the globe and the world’s largest technical professional organisation dedicated to advancing technology for the benefit of humanity. For over a century, IEEE has sponsored various programs to honour achievements in education, industry, research, and service, celebrating distinguished colleagues, teachers, and corporate leaders who have made a lasting impact on humanity, technology, and the profession.

I was approached to design logos and provide brand direction for three of their main organisations, which are:

Robot Championships

This organisation promotes robotics and digital advancement, encouraging youth to pursue a career in the area and be creative by building their own robots. The competition currently takes place in Malta, however they have the intention to move it abroad in the future.

PEAsC

Professional and Educational activities have a great variety of Programs and Contests in order to serve its goals and mission. PEAsC’s mission is to develop non-technical skills programs (such as “Leadership Skills Training” or “Project Management”) in order to provide additional value to members, in particular to young engineers and students. To coordinate educational activities programs in Region 8 including pre-university education, university-level education, post-university (continuing) education, and the promotion of public awareness of engineering, technology, and other topics within IEEE’s Field of Interest. To recruit volunteers to implement professional and educational seminars and workshops in R8 and to train local Tutors (Trainers) for these activities.

Local Language Program

The Local Language Program is an initiative that promotes local languages of many countries across the globe by setting up talks – about science and also other subject areas – in those countries and finding local speakers to highlight local education and talent.

Robot Championships

The design of this logo reflects minimalistic design, with inspiration from HUDs and robotics hardware. The aim was to modernise the brand, since the previous design was quite outdated and was not resonating with the target audience, and also reflect the excitement of the competitions.

Since the robots created by students are more functional than independently intelligent, the logo variant in the middle were not ideal; the idea on the right was considered a bit too inflexible and not reflecting continuous area development and modernisation or teamwork.

Initial Designs

Final Designs

I created two versions of the preferred logo design. However, the client could not pick between the two and therefore they went for both, deciding to specify their applications and uses based on the backgrounds being used, and the medium. For example, the variant on the left (see image below) is more suitable on lighter and simpler backgrounds since the wording ‘IEEE Region 8’ would be lost on dark and busy backgrounds. I suggested they choose the variant on the right, simplifying brand guidelines and ensuring optimal readability and standing out, whatever the application. As designers like me already know, the client does not always go with what you suggest… 🙂

Logo Applications

PEAsC

The old PEAsC logo (see image below) presented quite a challenge in terms of application: in general it was too busy and had too much wording, in small applications it was impossible to keep it whole or readable, or to extract a piece of it while maintaining its meaning, and on social media profile images it was continuously cut out. The icons in the logo were understandable, given that they are quite universal, however they lacked originality and uniqueness.

Old PEAsC Logo

Initial Designs

I suggested keeping the concept of having three pieces, however designing the pieces in a way that they have a role in making up a whole. Below are initial designs with inspirations coming from arcade games such as Tetris and my experience in Technical Design projects. Initially, the client did not want to swerve a lot from their current logo, therefore I tried to stay as close as possible – however the results were not ideal. Other ideas included using white space and extracting the icons for the full logo.

Final Designs: Main Logo

Keeping the client’s requirements and all ideas in mind, I further simplified my design down to shapes – very similar to the shape blocks bucket I had as a child – and expressed the conversion of three pieces to a whole by using arrows. This modular idea provided the right level of flexibility with the elements making sense both together and apart when applied as ‘sub-brands’.

Sub-Brand Logos

Local Language Program

The logo for the Local Language program had several developments; the final requirement showed that it was not going to be used as a logo, but rather as a secondary stamp or icon to and placed on promotional material for talks set up in the Region 8 list of countries to show what language is going to be used during the talk. Therefore any initial logo ideas were scrapped and the final design was created more with an icon mentality (even though it had to contain more text that I cared for, as a requirement!). The idea behind this design is that the shape itself has the form of a speech bubble. When minimised, the important wording ‘Local Language’ and language reference are still readable. The low-opacity inverted commas are there more for an effect of depth and to further highlight the event type.

There were 6 variations required per language: the language representation at the top right as per the local language, a version with ‘Ambassador’ at the top and another version with ‘Activity’ at the top – to be used depending on the type of talk or event being held in that country. For each these 3 versions the B&W version was required as well (like the other two logos above). This required some repetitive work, however it was quite satisfying.

Logo Main Version

Conclusion

It was quite an intensive project, with just two months and very limited budget. However both me and the client were very satisfied with the outcome, and I was glad to contribute to better visibility of these European organisations which help sustain just causes and work to expand scientific knowledge, accessible education and expression of talent in countries across the world.