American Anthropological Association’s (AAA) new public education initiative, World on the Move, seeks to address an increasingly common sentiment that migration and displacement is a new and negative trend. Modern transportation has made global mobility easier, cheaper, and faster, and international migration continues to grow rapidly. With this new initiative, AAA aims to change the public conversation, with the goal of ultimately impacting inequitable policies and practices through insights gained from anthropological research. 

Mike and Lindsay exercise a high level of creativity and professionalism. They are skilled artists and designers that establish realistic work plans and always keep deadlines. I couldn’t ask for more.

Leslie Walker
Project Manager, Public Education Initiative
American Anthropological Association

A new public initiative

Migration is tradition

The marketing materials developed for World on the Move were created to start raising awareness, support, and funding for a new traveling museum exhibit. 

This educational initiative will juxtapose historical migration trends with current migration trends, demonstrating that this is not a new phenomenon. Most of us are immigrants and refugees or descend from them. World on the Move will start a conversation to help a broad cross-section of the public critically assess their notions about migration.

Putting a face to a story

People’s attitudes and government policies towards immigration generally correlate. When public opinion towards immigration is, on average, negative, government policies aim at decreasing the level of immigration to their countries and vice versa. But, when asked to think of particular immigrants in their own neighborhood, people assert that those individuals and families positively affect their community. Putting a face and personal story to larger trends makes them easier to grasp and remember, which is why the imagery for this campaign specifically featured faces from around the world.

World on the Move highlights five thematic areas of why people migrate:

  • Education and economic opportunity
  • Natural disasters and environmental change
  • War and conflict
  • Forced movement (e.g. enslavement, trafficking)
  • Cosmopolitan Travel

Each featured immigrant correlates to a highlighted migration story:

Eastern Africa

The “cradle of life” for the human species and the site of our initial human migration.

South Pacific

Contemporary examples of climate change and coastal erosion driving people to Australia and Indonesia.

Middle East

War and conflicts starting as early as the 1940’s prompting people traveling to Europe.


Current trends of leaving rural provinces in Western China to travel to urban Eastern China or Japan.

West Africa

The slave trade from the coast of West Africa to the Americas.

Mexico and Central America

Contemporary migration patterns of Latin Americans to the United States.

Two styles of print

Two brochures were developed — a classic trifold was for large scale distribution, and a specialized one was created for important donors and supporters. 

Illustrated movement

The specialized brochure features a sliding mechanism that literally illustrates immigrants moving from one country to another. When the piece is opened, the imagery moves instantly, expressing the point that migration happens all over the world, all throughout time, and will continue to do so with or without acknowledgment. 

Online brand

Fullscreen video on the web

In addition to the print pieces, we put together an animated featured video for World on the Move. Not only is it being used to promote the education initiative, the video sequence was exported for use on the web. We built a custom solution to play the animation when a visitor first lands on the home page of Understanding Migration, enabling users to understand the essence of the education initiative. 

While we were working on the website and to bring the branding together, we spruced up the styles and layout of the WordPress website, adding a final finesse to the campaign.