Linköpings kommun

An innovative design system for an innovative city

Linköping is a municipality in Östergötland County, Sweden. Linköping is one of Sweden's fastest-growing cities, where self-driving buses already run on the streets, and world-leading science is shaping a better future.

About the project

When Linköping municipality asked Emakina to refresh their brand identity 'without changing the font and logo' and with a digital-first approach, we embraced the challenge with gusto.
This Swedish city dates back to the 14th century and has evolved to become known as a fast-growing municipality where self-driving busses run the streets and world-leading science shapes a better future. So, how did we go about modernising the Middle Ages?

The challenge

Linköping felt that their visual identity was outdated and not adapted for mobile. At the same time, their design system was fragmented and created confusion both internally and externally. They wanted Emakina to create their new identity to be authoritative yet modern, inspirational and colourful – all without changing the logo or font.

Our solution

Constant collaboration and finding synergies between municipality, academy, and business is the formula that has always been the driving force behind the city of Linköping. Emakina wanted the new visual identity to reflect this. So, we came up with a wide range of graphic components that can be combined and cherry-picked depending on what is needed.
To create this design system, we started with the logo. We removed the tagline and put it into another component that can be added when needed. We also used the face of the lion in the logo to make it work better in small sizes, remade the typography of the wordmark and placed the logo in a black box to ensure optimal visibility. In terms of colour – apart from greyscale, we narrowed the colour palette down to only five, which are to be used one at a time. We also introduced new settings and rules for how to use the Helvetica font and added geometric shapes that can be combined with colours and text.

The result

In the end, Emakina created a fresh new identity for the City of Linköping (using old assets), held together by a creative design system that allowed this Swedish municipality to meet its citizens in the best possible way – both on and off screen.