Iceland’s modern narrative has centered around its quality of life, progressive agenda and spectacular nature. Business Iceland wished to supplement this by positioning the district of Reykjavik called Reykjavik Science City (RSC) as the primary destination for the country’s growing community of scientists, entrepreneurs and investors. Kunde & Co was tasked with developing a brand strategy and visual identity for RSC to attract international talent and capital to the city.
Branding the Perfect Environment
Business Iceland is a public-private partnership established to improve the competitiveness of Icelandic companies in foreign markets and stimulate economic growth by strengthening Iceland’s image and reputation through various activities.
Silicon Valley is the most well-known, but Science Cities have shot up worldwide over the last decades. Science Cities are concentrated pools of scientific and technological expertise that attract venture capital and produce innovations that bring prosperity to society1.
RSC is made possible by its proximity to two accredited universities, a national hospital, a science hub, and a myriad of companies within health technology, gaming, and innovation. From the get-go, it was evident that it was crucial to uncover the intricate and invisible networks of knowledge within RSC to attract the right talent and capital. To do this, Kunde & Co conducted a range of qualitative interviews and focus group workshops with representatives from the area’s most prominent organizations and companies.
Four key values surrounding Reykjavik consistently emerged during the data collection: a high quality of life, unique talent pool, vibrant research & business community, and access to spectacular nature. Also revealed, was that the area’s leading research and business were conducted within sustainable tech and life sciences. The concept was then narrowed to focus on attracting talent and capital from these research fields.
Fueled by the insights, Kunde & Co and Business Iceland created the concept, The Perfect Environment. A concept that boldly communicates how RSC is the perfect place to shape the next generation of entrepreneurs, environmentalists, and engineers. An environment where decades of improvisation and making the most of limited resources has shaped a community that may hold the answers to modern society’s significant challenges.
A new visual identity and logo were developed to support the concept. The color palette of ice blue, moss green, tech purple, and fire red were all rooted in Iceland’s culture and environment, playing a significant role in creating recognizability and differentiation. Adhering to the concept’s focus on technology and start-up mentality, visual references to coding were built into the logo and payoff, while hand-drawn illustrations symbolized agility, sprint innovation, and brainstorming processes. A distinct tone of voice characterized by honesty, informality and boldness supported the visuals to reflect the distinct attitude within the science city.
The outcome was a concept that confronts modern society’s largest challenges head-on and is so deeply founded in features unique to Reykjavik that RSC clearly differentiates itself from competing locations in Europe and the USA.
- Brand purpose and story
- Brand strategy
- Visual identity
- Web design concept
- GTM strategy
- Qualitative analysis