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Recently the RSA was filled with imagination, courage and irreverence as RSA Academy students told us what they really think about the RSA, and the John Adam Street building in particular.

In an attempt to help students of the RSA academy understand a little bit more about the RSA and to try and involve them in what we are doing, we asked for their opinions on the reception and waiting areas of John Adam Street and whether it reflects our values. When you walk into the building, can you tell that we are irreverent, courageous and imaginative, as we claim to be? What could we do to ensure that someone walking in off the street knows that the RSA is different to other organisations?

Responses from the students ranged from painting the walls bright colours and installing fish tanks and a sound system, to commissioning a cartoon of Matthew Taylor and using cat flaps instead of doors! However, a recurrent theme throughout the students’ suggestions was that we should have more visual evidence of what it is we do. And things that show what we are doing now, not just what we have done in the past. There ought to be photographs of the people that work here and the projects that we are working on. Pictures of Fellows and of their projects or interests. Pictures showing them being courageous or irreverent. Evidence that we are being brave with what we do and not taking ourselves too seriously.


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