Wash U – IRI

The Implementation Research Institute (IRI) is an organization associated with Washington University (St. Louis) that focuses on career advancement and education of individuals researching new methods for the mental health field. They bring together faculty that provide mentorship to fellows over the course of a year and guide them in their research.


IRI wanted a simple site to serve as a place for potential fellows to learn about their program, the faculty serving as mentors, and how to apply to become a fellow. Since the deal with a complicated subject, one of the biggest challenges was effectively communicating what they do to site users.


Our process began with logo design. We knew it was going to be a challenge to portray exactly was IRI does, but we brainstormed several options and came out with top choices that we felt like represented the brand and created visual interest. We

The first concept was very structured and included a visual nod to a magnifying glass using concentric circles as a part of the letter “R.” This concept represented the scientific inquiry and research that IRI faculty guide fellows through.

The second concept involved the cycle of exploration and research and how all the new research can lead to even more discoveries. The circular symbol represents the cycle of innovation and reinvention while the circles bursting forth represent the spread of knowledge.

The final logo concept depicts a brain made out of neural connecting points. It represents not only the focus of IRI, mental health, but also the connections formed between faculty and fellows as they push forward with new research to changes innovate in their field.

After receiving feedback from the client, we moved forward with the brain mark from concept three and the font choice of concept two to complete our final mark.

At this point, we experimented with different color palettes, eventually settling on a rich palette of teals and greens. The teal expresses the innovative technological advances that IRI strives to make, while the green is a vibrant, friendly color to represent the collaboration and teamwork involved in IRI’s process.

Our font choice for the final logo was Glegoo, a friendly serif font that had a techy edge. It’s modern but traditional at the same time, amplifying IRI’s desire to build on current mental health methodology while innovating for the future. We carried Glegoo through to the web design to tie everything together, but paired it with a clean, legible san serif called Oxygen for the smaller paragraph copy.

Our goals for the web design, were a simple easy to use site where all fellows and faculty could get to the resources they need while providing an informative site for any potential fellows interested in the program. To describe IRI’s methods and purpose, we created an infographic based on the logo.

In other areas of the site, we produced simple gridded content to organize information, including the faculty and fellow bios and informative icon call to actions that are on every page so users can access important information easily.

To see more of our final web design, check out IRI’s website here.