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The Quote Text

Research. World. Community. Excellence. Those are the words we heard the most when we spoke with faculty, staff, students, alumni, trustees, people from all corners of the university. And we agree: That's us, to a T. That's why the Johns Hopkins identity looks the way it does – with the book representing knowledge and discovery, the world symbolizing our global reach, and the crest of Lord Baltimore indicating our connection to our community. It sounds simple because it is. It's who we are: America's first research university.

Guidelines Download PDF

You've got questions. We've got answers. The identity guidelines have detailed information on expected logo usage. They exist to help graphic designers and other stewards of the identity work with logos and other university marks. You'll find information about horizontal and vertical versions of the logos, size variations, clear-space requirements, the Johns Hopkins signature, and much more. These guidelines are specific to the identity and do not encompass "brand" colors, fonts, or other creative recommendations. Can't find what you're looking for in the PDF? Email

Our Seal

The academic seal was adopted by the board of trustees on December 7, 1885. It represents the university's dedication to the advancement of knowledge in service to the community and the world.

The mark, the result of a design collaboration between Baltimore historian Clayton C. Hall and Stephen Tucker, the Somerset Herald of London's College of Arms, represents all of Johns Hopkins University—and it's not going anywhere.

It indicates institutional sanction for official, legal, and ceremonial purposes. It should be reserved for these special uses where its detailed illustration can be used to the greatest effect. If you would like to request use of the seal, contact

JHU Seal
It's part of our history. And our future. It's part of our history. And our future.

You might be wondering, "Is the JHU seal going away?"
Find the answer at

Use of Name GuidelinesDownload PDF

The Johns Hopkins University name and associated logos represent the high caliber of Johns Hopkins’ faculty, staff, students, and alumni and convey the quality and breadth of their endeavors. The Johns Hopkins name and logo are among the university’s most valuable assets.

Public trust in Johns Hopkins University is best served when the institutional name and brand are used accurately and in the context of our missions: education, research, and discovery for world benefit. However, the public's trust may be eroded when the name and brand are used inaccurately or to endorse an outside product or service. Even the appearance of an endorsement can harm Johns Hopkins University’s reputation for independence, objectivity, and excellence.

Therefore, to uphold the public's trust and to maintain the institution's reputation and credibility, members of the Johns Hopkins community should carefully consider any proposed use of the Johns Hopkins University name. Johns Hopkins actively protects its name and marks from improper or misleading use by individuals or organizations not associated with the institution and is committed to assuring that use of the name and marks by faculty, students, alumni, staff, Johns Hopkins programs and others is appropriate.

Questions? Contact your divisional communications professional or email

Good question. Find the answer at

Not Finished

Hold on a minute, there. We're not done. Not even close. The identity is a big step toward projecting Johns Hopkins as a unified university that leverages all of its strengths. But some of you are probably wondering about colors, fonts, imagery guidelines, and more. We hear you, and we get it. The identity launch is phase 1 of a multi-phase process. The next step will be expanded guidelines, which—like the identity—will be flexible. Stay tuned.


Questions? Comments? Suggestions? The Office of Communications or the communications leader in your school or division can assist.


We know you like to be in the know. That's why we're committed to keeping the university community informed about the new identity. Sign up for updates and you'll never miss a file change, new guideline, or added resource.

Frequently Asked Questions

How can I order business cards or stationery with our new logo?

Order new business cards or stationery through the JHU eMarketplace within SAP. If you do not have access to the SAP eMarketplace, please call or email Jessica Wingeart at vendor Webb Mason (443-589-1557 or for a user ID and password to access the site here:

Why is JHU undertaking an identity initiative?

Our most important asset is our name: Johns Hopkins. Yet, as respected as we are, we don't tell our collective story very well. People understand some of our strengths, but not all of them. The goal of the identity initiative is to create a shared visual for the entire university that allows us to begin telling a more cohesive and powerful story.

When did this initiative start?

It began several years ago with comprehensive data collection and stakeholder interviews. In 2012, President Daniels formally announced the initiative after consultation with the deans and executive directors from all of the schools and divisions.

What was the process for arriving at the final designs?

The process for this initiative was collaborative in several important ways. First, the initiative was led by a team of communications directors from every school and division. This team worked together for more than a year to create the final designs. Additionally, throughout the process the team sought feedback from the JHU community, and this feedback helped guide the direction of the final designs.

Why wasn’t I asked for my opinion?

Many, many people provided feedback and valuable insights about this initiative. Every effort was made to give stakeholders throughout the university an opportunity to share their thoughts. Emails were sent all faculty, staff, and students, as well as alumni for whom the university has email addresses. We also reached out via social media channels. Glenn Bieler, VP of Communications for the university, gave more than 40 presentations to different groups across the university soliciting feedback on the proposed designs; the communications directors met with members of their schools to solicit feedback; and everyone in the university community had the opportunity to view an online presentation and provide feedback through the identity website.

How were the new designs chosen?

A successful identity reflects the story of the organization. We asked members of the JHU community to articulate this story in their own words, and these words stood out the most: research, knowledge, world, community, excellence and people. The final design for the university logo reflects these important words: the book representing discovery, research and education above all else that we do; the globe representing the positive impact we make throughout the world; and the crest of Lord Baltimore representing our commitment and connection to our local community. All of these elements, including the shield, were based on symbols from the university seal. Some school/divisional logos share the shield shape but incorporate existing graphics that have special meaning for those schools/divisions. The result, even with this flexibility, is a unified look that is more fitting of an elite university.

Why was the university seal used as the basis for the new design?

The design had to reflect the entire university. The seal was the only symbol that represented everyone.

Isn’t the seal the current university logo?

No. The current university logo is the Johns Hopkins University wordmark.

Why not use the seal as our logo?

Like all university seals, our seal is a formal symbol meant for ceremonial and official purposes where institutional sanction is important, for example on diplomas, awards of achievement, and legal documents. The formal design works well in situations where the seal stands alone and no other graphic competes with it. The new identities, on the other hand, are what are known as “logos”: They were designed for daily communications and promotion where a less formal and more flexible design is necessary. This flexibility is important for Johns Hopkins, and the new identity architecture allows for the inclusion of existing symbols that are meaningful to certain schools and divisions.

Does the new logo replace the seal?

No. The seal holds a place of special importance to the university, and always will. It will continue to be used for ceremonial and other official purposes. It is not going away.

What colors are being used for the new identity?

The new logos can be blue (Pantone+ 288 C), black or white. Blue (Pantone+ 288 C) was included in the color selection because it is a common color already being used throughout the university and has a strong tie to Johns Hopkins through the School of Medicine and health system. Additionally, it works well in the logo, giving it strength and readability. Note that blue (Pantone+ 288 C), white, and black are not official university colors. Johns Hopkins does not have universally accepted colors that represent the entire university. We have academic colors (gold and sable) and athletic colors (light blue and black), but no official colors.

Won’t it be expensive to update our materials and signage with a new logo?

We are very mindful of cost and understand that it can take years to replace all of the logos currently in use, particularly on signage. The new logos should be used only when new materials are printed or where the cost implications are small. Nothing needs to be thrown away or redone just to replace a logo; the updating of materials is at the discretion of the school or division.

Is the Johns Hopkins Medicine identity changing?

No. The Johns Hopkins Medicine identity will remain the same. If you are currently using the Johns Hopkins Medicine logo, continue using it until further guidelines have been developed for use of the new School of Medicine logo. Please visit the Johns Hopkins Medicine branding and use of name website at

Download Your Logo Files and Guidelines

School and Divisional Contacts

Central Office of Communications
Krieger School of Arts and Sciences
Whiting School of Engineering
Carey School of Business
Sheridan Libraries and Museums
Center for Talented Youth
School of Education
School of Medicine
Applied Physics Laboratory
School of Nursing
Bloomberg School of Public Health