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A new logo for the Politecnico di Torino

25 March 2021

 “The Politecnico di Torino has a strong identity, with solid roots in the academic, economic and social history of our territory and our country. However, all identities evolve and we are no exception, especially in a period of great change such as the one we are going through with a Politecnico that for three years has opened up to partly new dimensions in the way it understands its institutional missions and its relationship with society. We therefore felt the need to start a major project to revise not only the university’s image, but also its ample and articulated online presence, which is more important than ever in the present day. The first result of this project that, with great pleasure, we share with the public, is the presentation of the university’s new logo. For our academic community, in a broad sense of the term also including, for example, all our graduates in Italy and around the world, the logo is an important component of our collective identity, an image that in a compact manner represents our roots, values and missions. We believe that this new logo represents all this extremely well, but, compared to the previous one, with a much more contemporary sensibility, much more open to the future”. This is how Professor Juan Carlos De Martin, Vice Rector for Culture and Communication, explained the reasons that led the Politecnico di Torinoto undertake a process to revise its image, starting from the logo, but which will concern the various ways in which the universitypresents itself to its interlocutors and which will also cover the entire online presence of the university, with a new website that will be presented in the coming months. The Politecnico di Torinoused two expert communication and digital companies to undertake the work for this project: the Milanese digital agency Wellnet and the Turin communication agency Sixeleven.

A new logo, therefore, aimed at enhancing tradition, a founding value of the university, recovering the most important elements of the historical seal, but revised with a more modern perspective, with a clearer and more legible shape suitable for current communication uses.

The logo is the first result of a process that involved an articulated preliminary analysis phase, the results of which have become the reference point for a more comprehensive intervention on "brand identity". Via almost 5,000 questionnaires, the Politecnico community was asked to understand what values it should represent: teachers, students, alumni, companies and researchers were given the opportunity to express their opinion. Dozens of one-to-one interviews with the key figures of the university, 9 focus groups, and the analysis of about 400 reviews collected online completed a large collection of data and suggestions useful for setting up the work.

It was decided to carry out a "restyling", to confirm the knowledge and tradition assets that the previous pictorial style "seal" represented. At the same time, in the creation of a real "logo", the decisions made in terms of aesthetics and graphic language were aimed at explaining the direction of the Politecnico of today and tomorrow: an institution projected into the future, innovation, an opening to new perspectives, to the construction of a new technical-scientific humanism.

Certain decisions were based on rationalisation: above all, the maintenance of a single "Politecnico di Torino" inscription, as the logotype, and a single date, 1859, the beginning of the university's history. Other decisions guided the search for rationalisation and the synthesis of the logo, with the elimination of some elements deemed not to be so important.

The most important decisions were taken in regard to the enhancement of the fundamental elements. The Valentino Castle (Castello del Valentino), which has been the location of the Application School of Engineers since its origins, is now a greater part of the focus, and has been completely redesigned. The head of Minerva Galeata, goddess of wisdom, ingenuity and useful arts, also regains the element of the spear compared to the previous version. The bay laurel and oak branch, traditional elements of heraldry, respectively a symbol of glory and moral strength and of the degree awarded to the students of the university, close the other elements in a perfect circle, replacing the previous double circle.

Even the colour has been restyled: blue has remained, but in a different shade, which supported the idea of contemporaneity in continuity. Prussian blue makes the logo more up to date; also known as Engineer's Blue, it was used in a special blend to check the flatness of a surface. The secondary colour is orange, complementary to blue.

The lettering of the words "Politecnico di Torino" has smoothed out some previous rigidity, placing itself more in dialogue with the logo, such as in the choice of the perfect circle that symbolizes unity and inclusion, present in the geometric figure - which ideally encloses the graphic elements, as well as in the "o" and in the dots of the "i" of the logotype. The fonts have a more technical aspect but also show openness, proposition towards the future, thanks to the sizes of some letters that point upwards and forwards, symbolizing the direction taken by the Politecnico.

“It was a question of highlighting the founding elements that are still central to Politecnico di Torino - says Gabriele Pinzin, Creative Director of the Sixeleven agency that handled the restyling - giving them greater breathing space, enhancing them and transmitting an overall sense of progress, advancement, future potential”.

“We are living in a period in which universities are asked to respond to new challenges posed to us by society, students and the economy", concludes the Rector Guido Saracco: "Our university is also transforming itself and the start of the process of renewing our image was an opportunity for our Politecnico community to question itself about these changes and the direction to be taken: I thank all our colleagues, students and all our other interlocutors who contributed in terms of ideas and suggestions. With this image redefinition project and the increasingly important online presence of our university, we wish to let everyone know the direction in which the Politecnico is moving. I am sure that our whole large community will recognise itself in this new logo and will be proud to show it to the world as a symbol of our ability to renew ourselves, in step with the times but always remaining well connected with our roots”.

The video presentation of the new logo