Barcelona as a place brand
a study on visual communication and place marketing

The research for my final bachelor project was developed together with Maja Wastesson during the bachelor’s thesis workshop, tutored by Gary Svensson and examined by Niklas Rönnberg at Linköping University.

This study suggests that there is a lot to consider when working with a city's brand: ideas, people, history, expectations and context. During the interviews, the designers and creators behind three famous campaigns from Barcelona City Council told us about their approaches and strategies.​​​​​​​

So how do you create a brand that captures an entire city? Making a city's brand economically and culturally attractive through visual communication is no small feat. There must be a number of apparently contradictory aspects: it must be clear but subtle, universal but unique, instill a sense of belonging in the inhabitants but have a global appeal. All of this must be taken into consideration, while it must also stand up over time. In addition, illustration, typography, copywriting and semiotics, from a graphic design perspective, must play a decisive role in the creation of meaning and the presentation of the message. All these ingredients act as tools and are dependent on, as well as related to, the vision of the city and its context. 

The interviews accompanying the research are documented in detail in the project report available online on DIVA. The report is especially recommended to communication students and branding practictioners who are interested in visual communication in the public sector.

Special thanks to:
Nacho Padilla from Barcelona City Council, Laia Guarro from Laia Guarro Oficina de Comunicación Gráfica and Joan Alvares from Putos Modernos for the fantastic commitment and participation in the interviews, providing this study with invaluable information and insights.

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