Redesign of The Economist

Creative Brief


1. Client & Working Team
2. Defining the Problem
3. Audience
4. Goals
5. Approach
6. Deliverables
7. Milestones and Deadlines


Client: The Economist weekly newspaper
Project Management: Kaloyan Yankulov
Design: Kaloyan Yankulov


Erik Spiekermann executed the last redesign of The Economist in 2001, eleven years ago. As Spiekermann himself says: “I think that every publication needs its design evaluated every six or so years.” Currently The Economist has an outdated visual presentation, which requires improvements. It’s navigational structure although consistent is not in step with the consumer needs of the modern younger audience, which is exposed more and more to the quick browsing experience that the World Wide Web offers today. It lacks visual hierarchy between the content sections, which impedes the exploration of the newspaper and renders difficult the navigation through the sections in an environment that’s not friendly for thorough reading i.e. on the bus stop, on a plane, quick lunch break, etc. As The Economist values the time of its readers and we believe them to be busy people with their professional or otherwise engagements, we define that as a usability problem of the newspaper. Aesthetically The Economist also requires improvements, younger audience don’t find the design attractive and engaging enough.


Currently The Economist Audience is predominantly old people. Statistics show that 47 is the median age of The Economist subscriber. Most of them are financially stable with a high job position. And almost all of them (91%) read the magazine at home. Does that mean The Economist is ignoring its young audience? We don’t believe so. The Economist is an ideas publication and as its collective says The Economist is for the Ideas People. As The Economist believes “We get paid – and promoted – for the strength of our ideas. Management techniques and balancing budgets are important but it is creativity and brainpower that bring the top jobs.” As younger people are one of the most creative and innovative part of the population attracting younger subscribers will not only benefit them but the magazine itself as well. Our main focus as we redesign will be to attract readers that are in their 20s while still preserve the seriousness and consistence of the bullet-proof 2001 design.


• To attract people that are in their 20s.
• To improve the content navigation.
• To improve aesthetics of the newspaper’s design.


• Create a more visually appealing design, emphasizing the photography in it, increasing the white space and improving the layout.
• Create a colour language that aims to improve navigation through the newspaper. Presenting different sections of the newspaper with their particular colour.
• Experiment with different typographic choices.

6. Deliverables

• three separate covers
• a two-page table of contents (two single pages or a spread),
• one news section (one or two pages)
• one long feature (five pages or more) and
• one short feature (two or three pages)

7. Milestones and Deadlines

Deadline: 3rd May 2012


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