Initiating the 5Bridges: building and sharing the structure and identity of the project
A key element of a project is the structure of its functioning through the stakeholders. That is even more determinant when the project is proposing new solutions, new ways of implementation, when there is no existing template to be referred to, and when it is carried out by numerous partners. Building a project specific identity is then an important step in order to federate all the stakeholders, and make the project launch concrete. That is why, it was essential for us to start the 5Bridges’ news on those crucial aspects of the project development.
Although the 5Bridges’ partnership was already existing before the UIA approval, its organization has been strengthened thanks to the European initiative. One of the very first tasks has been the recruitment of a Project Coordinator. Lisa Guérin was hired in December in order to facilitate the relation with the UIA Permanent Secretariat, to organize the partnership and the project governance, to follow the implementation of the activities, and to take in charge the communication components of the project.
Beyond the mandatory elements to be provided to UIA as part of the Initiation Phase (Partnership Agreement, Monitoring Plan...), we have decided to take the necessary time to build joint tools that would favour good practices for the project. This is important considering the experimental nature of 5Bridges project: the planned final solution is innovative, and the implementation choices also imply unusual ways of working (co-conception, experimentation, multi-stakeholders approach, articulation between departments, internal communication...). Moreover, one of the specificities of the 5Bridges project, is that it is a NGO project - initiated by “Les Eaux Vives” - and now strongly supported and coordinated by the City of Nantes, as Urban Authority. This implies another complexity, linked to the different stance to adopt and to the identity to build.
Then, designing a new logo has been an important step, building a new shared project visual identity. The logo embodies the 5Bridges, in its form, its symbolic, as well as in the way that it has been conceived. Indeed, it has been discussed, adjusted and collectively validated during the Project Coordination Team meetings that gather monthly the 6 Project Partners.
Let’s describe it quickly to understand its components and its significance:
- Its global composition is inspired by the very first logo of the 5Bridges, created by the NGO “Les Eaux Vives” that depicted 5 people holding hands, then showing the idea of «living together», and taking into account the origins and the history of the project.
- The 5 colours have been chosen on the basis of the colours of the partners’ logos, highlighting the collective partnership-based approach. This multiplicity of colours is also a reminder of the multiplicity of components and activities that the project is carrying out.
- Its shape suggests a house, symbol of welcoming, roof and shelter…
- The «brand name» «5Bridges» is formalized and should always be written in this way now.
The meaning of this description demonstrates that every little component can be discussed and can make sense regarding the whole project. This new visual identity is the first step for creating a specific 5Bridges’ image and initiate the project-related communication. A presentation leaflet will be soon published to allow for a quick but global overview of the project.
As already said, time is necessary for co-building with partners... and in fact, lots of tools are still under construction, but some of them are almost ready! For example, a 5Bridges’ communication Charter has been created as a reference document fixing the good practices, defining the global communication strategy, the different activities and tools that will be developed, and the rules that each of the six partners have to comply with. It is also a way to share points of views, to associate different actors through meetings, and to ensure the sound understanding of their missions…. Preparation time is never wasted time!
Several activities have also been initiated, and they will be presented in a next article.
Author: The 5Bridges Team