City University London: Starting on the journey

Communicating: Building an identity based on a combination of academic excellence, a central London location, and a focus on business and the professions.


The VC’S view: “I joined City about eighteen months ago. In the months leading up to my arrival the question of how we could further differentiate City was at the heart of discussions I was having with the institution. “City was already distinctive, being based in central London with the Lord Mayor as Chancellor and with a focus on business and the professions. This brought City a great deal of success in terms of financial stability, popularity, student employability and salaries on graduation. However, this position was not where the university wanted to be in the longer term. It did not play to our existing academic strengths, it overlapped with the position taken by some other universities in the capital and it did not support our academic reputation.“We reached agreement within the university that we should build on our long history of being closely interwoven with the City, business and professions in London but add the explicit third element of ‘academic excellence’. That additional differentiating element is now driving our various initiatives in anticipation of our detailed strategic plan.”

In this case study discover:

  • How did they work towards their distinctive identity?
  • What is the role of communications?
  • How will they know if it's working?

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Topics: Communicating your distinctiveness, Case Studies, HE Case Studies.

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PDFiconCity University London: Case Study (PDF 96 KB)

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