In an effort to determine how best to protect the intrinsic value the Society projects to its members and the public, ASCE has spent nearly two years examining how the Society is perceived by its members and others. It has asked such questions as the following: What does ASCE mean to you? When you think about your connection to the Society, what comes to mind? What are your highest aspirations for our profession and the organization that serves it? As a result of this study, ASCE’s Board of Direction has adopted a new strategy, along with a new logo, for establishing the Society’s corporate identity.
The Society retained McKinley Marketing, a consulting firm based in Washington, D.C., to conduct extensive research to determine the fundamental characteristics that are associated with ASCE. The research included focus groups, a comprehensive brand assessment survey, and collaborative exercises with participants that included members of ASCE, the public, and the media. The research also included a review of the brands of notable for-profit and nonprofit organizations.
On the basis of these research data, the board and the consulting firm determined that ASCE’s brand is best represented by six key attributes, which may be conveyed by the following statements:
- ASCE as a professional group is a trusted source of knowledge, information, advocacy, and networking.
- ASCE is a leader of the civil engineering profession; it advances the profession by consistently acting to promote the highest standards in order to safeguard society.
- ASCE’s technical resources—including its publications, periodicals, and educational and training programs—are highly regarded and are perceived as being produced by experts in their fields.
- ASCE’s history, strong sense of purpose, and responsible stewardship qualify it as an enduring organization that will wisely use its resources to consistently meet the expectations of future generations of members.
These attributes will serve as a compass that will guide the Society in its present and future efforts.
In addition to articulating the Society’s key attributes, the research participants stated that ASCE should do more to represent civil engineering as a contemporary, innovative, and dynamic profession. As part of this process ASCE has updated its visual identity by refreshing its logo, corporate materials, and overall appearance.
The research participants also named four core areas, or “subbrands,” that they use to sift through ASCE’s information and resources. These core areas, which form the major pillars of ASCE’s work, are knowledge and learning, leadership and management, membership and community, and issues and advocacy. To give these areas a more distinct profile, color coding and icons will be used, as seen in this issue of ASCE News. The graphic design of the newspaper also has been refreshed, the intent being to make the front page more reader friendly and to portray civil engineering as an innovative and dynamic profession that has a significant role to play in addressing some of society’s most pressing problems. The colored icons will also be used in other ASCE materials and resources. Other changes reflecting the new brand will be implemented during the next year. (See page 3 for a detailed description of the core areas and how they relate to ASCE’s materials and resources.) To provide feedback on the graphic improvements to ASCE News, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
The members of the Task Committee on Branding, which helped guide this initiative, are Harold Farchmin, P.E., F.ASCE, the chair; Kelly Brennan, P.E., M.ASCE; Deepal Eliatamby, P.E., F.ASCE; Kimberly Hughes, P.E., M.ASCE; Jon Magnusson, P.E., S.E., Dist.M.ASCE; Thomas Rachford, Ph.D., P.E., F.ASCE; Robert Stevens, Ph.D., P.E., F.ASCE; Joseph Syrnick, P.E., M.ASCE; and Robert Victor, P.E., M.ASCE