Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute

Modernizing Impact Reporting

MBARI hero

The Challenge

In 2018, Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute (MBARI) approached us to help them modernize their annual reports. After 20+ years of printed reports, they knew it was time to go digital. Now an ongoing partnership, we initially provided guidance and support managing the transition and found creative ways to use their rich content, from long-form articles to amazing underwater photos, videos, charts, and graphs.

The Outcome

With the solid technology backbone we created, the MBARI team now creates their digital annual report without incurring large production costs. An interactive experience results in more engaged audiences and a larger spread of awareness of the good work being done in the Monterey Bay and other locations across the globe. We've now helped MBARI launch three reports, each featuring a unique interactive opener.


  • Content & Campaign Consulting
  • Digital Infrastructure
  • Strategic Brand Building

Focus Areas

  • Climate Action & Environment
  • Science & Technology

MBARI Refresh Homepage
MBARI 2018 Annual Report Homepage

Designing a Flexible Framework

The website not only needed to be updated with new content and imagery, but MBARI also needed a brand new section that they were very excited about, showcasing new species. We upgraded the Content Management System (CMS) to make it easy to update content and upload new photos and videos to this new species section as well as individual articles.

MBARI 2018 Refresh Article Photos
Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute 2018 New Species
Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute Articles Awards

An Immersive Experience

In its 32+ year history, MBARI has discovered hundreds of new species in the Monterey Bay. We designed a new section on the annual report page showcasing many of the species it's discovered since the last annual report was published. The user can hover over each species to learn a little more about them, or click into a pop up to view a video or additional imagery.

Improved Foundations

We also updated the infrastructure of the site to serve content faster and more reliably. This allows MBARI to efficiently compose articles and featured stories in a flexible way. Each of the articles require formatting and assets; pictures, graphics, videos, slideshows, pull quotes, and more. The result is a robust annual report with a vast collection of diverse and engaging stories.

Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute Featured Articles
MBARI Annual Report 2018 Interior Pages

The Print Companion

Not all of MBARI’s stakeholders that need access to the annual report prefer digital. We continue to make a print version of the annual report each year that is a shorter summary of what is available online. The two versions are complementary to each other and provide MBARI new and creative ways of showcasing their accomplishments digitally while maintaining the traditional printed form.

MBARI book species

The book is printed on recycled paper and it’s smaller near square format gives it that tactile coffee table book feel. Content within the book directs readers to the site, for a more full experience.

MBARI Refresh Print
MBARI book cover
MBARI interior
West Cliff Wharf IMG 0137

Scope of Work

  • Content & Campaign Consulting

    • Brand Extension, Collateral, & Materials
  • Digital Infrastructure

    • Modern Bespoke Website Design & Development
    • Digital Blueprints
  • Strategic Brand Building

    • Content & Messaging Strategy
  • Other

    Related Work

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