New political report design

New political report design for the Higher Education Commission

We have just completed another major piece of print as part of our long-running series of work for the political think tank Policy Connect. This project is the latest report for the influential cross-party body the Higher Education Commission. Entitled ‘One Size Won’t Fit All – The Challenges Facing the Office for Students‘, the report was published last week to wide media coverage and a great launch at Portcullis House, next to the Houses of Parliament. We always enjoy these reports as they provide a challenge to find a fresh way of presenting quite dense, detailed information. However this one is a particular success as a set-piece of new political report design. With its bold, graphic cover it stands out a mile and supplies the report with a great identity as its finds its way into the hands of higher education policy decision-makers.


The launch of the new political report design for the Higher Education Commission



We were approached over the summer to discuss the new, as-then-untitled report for the HEC. Our early involvement in these projects can sometimes be rather an unusual moment! Invariably a report of this kind has a central purpose and a direction but the conclusions and recommendations tend to evolve during its writing. In fact the very nature of the report can shift somewhat as gathered evidence is collated and the co-chairs review what has been found.

In terms of creating an identity for a new political report the key here is – patience.

For us, the title is the key to the design. Policy Connect have a long history of using a few snappy words to distill the topics in the report. That was certainly the case here with ‘One Size Won’t Fit All‘. Just as soon as we had that, we were briefed by the team of their ideas – and in particular how they felt a literal or figurative cover wasn’t quite the right thing. As a result we began to think of a more abstract design and a geometric concept began to emerge of shapes that didn’t quite fit together.

Once that was on the table and embraced by the team at Policy Connect it was a question of picking out colours that jumped off the page and then gently sliding the words of the title into the geometry.

This style of illustrative geometric shapes then appears throughout the report. It definines the opening pages which are full of relevant quotes. Then the individual chapters which are divided up in a similar style. Each of these illustrated pages was created to be slightly different which gives the book a great pace for the reader as it flows through.

It’s a great example of new political report design – and one that has appeared in print in a beautiful perfect bound book and online as a download from the Policy Connect website.


Spreads for our new political report design for the Higher Education Commission

Spreads for our new political report design for the Higher Education Commission



We were thrilled that the ‘One Size Won’t Fit All‘ report was launched at Portcullis House, Parliament’s offices at the heart of Westminster.

The launch was attended by members of the House of Lords including Lord Norton of Louth and Gordon Marsden MP, Shadow Minister for Higher Education, Further Education and Skills.


The launch of the new political report design for the Higher Education Commission



Our work for Policy Connect is extensive, designing dozens of reports over years. It’s a great example of a partnership between an organisation and creative agency and one of which we are very proud.

Find out more about the background to our with Policy Connect

More about this report for the HEC (External link)