University of Toronto


Munk School of Global Affairs


Strategy / IA / UX / Creative


Website / CMS / Big Data

Deeply integrate research on global affairs with teaching and public education

You’ve heard it before… “it’s good to know people”. Well, that’s how this relationship began. In February 2009, I ran into an old colleague of mine on Adelaide Street in Toronto. He mentioned that he was in charge of leading the rebranding of a very well known school at the University of Toronto called “The Munk School”. They were about to close the RFP process, but he asked if I would want to throw my hat in the ring. I sure did! We won the account and the rest is still history in the making.

Thanks for the opportunity, name redacted!

The Munk School of Global Affairs proved to be the first in a long line of higher education clients that would soon follow. It was an opportunity to become intimately familiar with a new industry, and start laying the groundwork for wonderful things to come. But let’s get back to this “monster”.

The new name had been selected (Munk School of Global Affairs) and a logo created. The identity was taking shape, and the brand was well on its way across campus. Now we had to tackle the all-important website. From the start, this client indicated that this was not going to be a typical university website. They wanted it to attract not only prospective and current students, but also wanted it to become a hub of information regarding global affairs. This presented a challenge - maintaining balance and focus.

Design should be a process whereby a client has the opportunity to explore big ideas. Brian opens up space for that energy and contributes in ways that bypass the complexity of digital development and instead emphasizes vision. Consistently he has helped the Munk School of Global Affairs create concepts that have played a significant role in the success it has achieved online. He cares about the projects – and more importantly, stands for them.
—Sean Willett, Chief of Communications

In order to meet the needs of all stakeholders, we implemented priority navigation, large and engaging content carousels, easy to digest content buckets and formating in newspaper layout (a common design convention).

Our next challenge was content. An unprecedented volume of content. We needed to ensure that a robust content management strategy was in play. Our solution enables the client to add massive amounts of content to the site, at any time, without taking away from the core design elements and with no technical glitches. Ever.

Not only is The Munk School still a happy client, but they continue to spread the good word about working with me, which has resulted in numerous other successful post-secondary projects.


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