A new start

Client: Vlaams Parlement

A new mission

The new mission of the Flemish Parliament is to “Democratise Democracy”, meaning that they wanted to bring their activities closer to the general public. The previous website was mainly used by professionals: members of the parliament and their collaborators, lawyers, clerks and journalists. Anything that happens in the parliament was reflected on the website: all agenda items, reports, documents & laws dating back to 1993 could be searched for and consulted on the website.

A new perspective

Our main goal for the project was to put the new mission into action and to create a website that appealed to the public while at the same time making sure the professional users were serviced better than before. A second challenge was that next to the main website there were 3 other separate websites closely linked to the parliament: an educational platform, a website for the parliaments’ visitor center and a website about Flemish Parliament TV (a television channel dedicated to the parliament). Each of these websites had quite specific target users and functionalities. They wanted to integrate these separate platforms into the main new website.

We had to design a solution that serviced different target users and take into account the complexity of both the content and the organization itself.


We created a new brand guide with a new logo, new colours, imagery, etc. As with a lot of our projects we started by getting familiar with the parliament and the subject matters. We had workshops with all the internal departments and interviewed more than 30 target users ranging from politicians over visiting teachers to Luc from the archive department. During the research phase we also collaborated with a student from KUL (university) to research the needs and wishes of the public.

We did a story mapping exercise where we listed all the needed content and functionalities per different target user, both internal and external. The result was a functional blueprint of the project. Next up was the information architecture. We landed on a site structure and navigation system.

We reworked how the professional user could search for documents and organized user tests to make sure what we designed answered the needs of the users who use this functionality daily.

A lot of attention went into the content and functionalities for the large public. We created a virtual tour of the parliament and made sure the content of Vlaams Parlement TV could be watched on the website. We also completely revisited the news section. News items can now be linked to other entities of the website allowing interested user to dive deeper into the activities of the parliament. We also created an interactive “about the parliament” section in which user can quickly learn about all aspects of the parliament and easily navigate the informational about section.

Because of the size of the project, we created a design system: we defined colors, text style and a massive component library to ensure consistency throughout the platform and to streamline the handover to the development party.