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Nurturing Data Visualization

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Building your own skills is one step in strengthening how you use visualization in your work, but fostering organizational change can be hard. Here are a few quick considerations on how to nurture data visualization as a personal skill and as an organizational value, and tips for successful collaborations on data visualization activities.

Originally presented as part of the HC3 Innovation Webinar Series on March 8, 2017.

Published in: Data & Analytics
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Nurturing Data Visualization

  1. 1. Nurturing Data Visualization as a personal skill & organizational value Amanda Makulec, MPH Visual Analytics Advisor John Snow Inc. Presented 8 March 2017 HC3 InnovationWebinar 15: DataVisualization
  2. 2. M y s t o r y ( a n d w h a t I ’ve l e a r n e d )
  3. 3. O r g a n i z a t i o n s h ave c o m p l e x e c o s y s t e m s .
  4. 4. T h e Tre e s (Building your own skills.)
  5. 5. BuildingYour Skills READFlowingData.com InformationisBeautiful.net thefunctionalart.com PolicyViz.com AnnKEmery.com EvergreenData.com StorytellingwithData.com For inspiration For instruction Learn from experts who have spent years exploring information design.
  6. 6. BuildingYour Skills CRITI QUE Look at examples and think about what works, what doesn’t, and why. 1980 2008
  7. 7. BuildingYour Skills PRAC TICE Find opportunities to practice your design skills at work or for fun.
  8. 8. BuildingYour Skills SHARE Join communities where you can connect with data viz enthusiasts working in different areas of information design.
  9. 9. T h e Fo re s t (Creating change where you work)
  10. 10. Show rather than tell. 0 200000 400000 600000 800000 Washington DC Los Angeles, CA New York, NY Chicago, IL Boston, MA Mean Estimate Mean Estimate
  11. 11. Data Visualization Hub Find the people who are interested… …and connect them in a multidisciplinary community. Mobilize an internal network. Data Developers CommsDesign Adapted from Kotter (2012)
  12. 12. Find your champions and nurture them. Research Technology Design Communication Adapted from: https://onthinktanks.org/articles/visualising-data-both-a-science-and-an-art/ Look for people with different perspectives on information design.
  13. 13. Heavy lift Light touch Quick impact Sustained change Sustained ChangeTakes Time Invite someone whose data viz work you admire to do a lunch presentation
  14. 14. Heavy lift Light touch Quick impact Sustained change Sustained ChangeTakes Time Bring in an external facilitator for an all day viz workshop Invite someone whose data viz work you admire to do a lunch presentation
  15. 15. Heavy lift Light touch Quick impact Sustained change Sustained ChangeTakes Time Bring in an external facilitator for an all day viz workshop Start an internal data viz listserv & send monthly resources Invite someone whose data viz work you admire to do a lunch presentation
  16. 16. Heavy lift Light touch Quick impact Sustained change Sustained ChangeTakes Time Bring in an external facilitator for an all day viz workshop Identify a list of internal viz experts who can help project teams Start an internal data viz listserv & send monthly resources Invite someone whose data viz work you admire to do a lunch presentation
  17. 17. Heavy lift Light touch Quick impact Sustained change Sustained ChangeTakes Time Bring in an external facilitator for an all day viz workshop Identify a list of internal viz experts who can help project teams Start an internal data viz listserv & send monthly resources Hire specifically for visualization design skills in your MERL, comms, and dev teams Invite someone whose data viz work you admire to do a lunch presentation
  18. 18. A T h r i v i n g E c o s y s t e m 5Tips for Success in DataViz Collaborations
  19. 19. Speak the same language.
  20. 20. conceptual data driven declarative exploratory idea illustration everyday data viz idea generation visual discovery Matrix credit: Harvard Business Review’s Good Charts
  21. 21. Ask lots of questions.
  22. 22. Measure twice, cut once.
  23. 23. Program start Program end TIME With program Without program Start thinking about WHO WHAT HOW at the start Program impact
  24. 24. Understand your audience.
  25. 25. Put yourself in their shoes.
  26. 26. Not just job titles stakeholder groups organization names Focus on the human side of your data viz audience.
  27. 27. Sketch first.
  28. 28. Be realistic with deadlines. (especially when you’re first honing your design skills)
  29. 29. Amanda Makulec, MPH John Snow Inc. Visual Analytics Advisor @abmakulec

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