We want to show that all of our research themes are connected.
This was perhaps the most exciting line in any think tank project brief I’d ever read (I don’t get out much). The REMINDER project (Role of European Mobility and its Impacts in Narratives, Debates and European Union Reforms) approached Soapbox to discuss building a toolkit that would help wrap up the fifty or so reports and briefs that the program had generated across five major areas.
That's because when it comes to intra-European Union (EU) migration, policy, media coverage, public attitudes, and actual migration statistics interact in complex and important ways. That means you can’t really understand, say, media coverage of EU migration without also understanding policy and public opinion or actual trends in migration.
The REMINDER team wanted to show those interactions.
The key is investing in the time and effort to marry the right form to the content. The REMINDER project dedicated around 20% of its budget to content strategy and design, then invested about 80% of staff time into writing, editing and approving the 60+ articles in the toolkit. That’s an 80/20 rule we might do well to copy in future.
The web is full of possibilities for a new kind of thinking and for a new kind of writing. The medium is still pretty new, so we don’t have very many conventions for what this sort of thing should look like yet, though there are a few starting to pop up. We’ll have to do some experimentation. Some of it will work. Some of it won’t.