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Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Data visualisation: Contributions to evidence-based decision-making

A SciDev.Net Learning Report

"Data visualisation – the visual representation of data in charts and graphs – has grown in popularity in recent years. Media outlets and research communication organisations alike have invested in the production of data visualisation, committing to the belief that visualisation is an effective form of communication.

In this report, Chapter 1 contextualises the rise of data visualisation and its purported potential to stimulate a 'data revolution' in development. The specific contributions of data visualisation to research communication goals are discussed in Chapter 2. Chapter 3 explores instances in which data visualisation is an appropriate form of research communication, recognising that it is not a ‘magic bullet’ solution to the need for more evidence informed decision-making, but should instead be used selectively. Chapter 4 discusses ways to enhance the effectiveness of data visualisation. Lastly, Chapter 5, provides concluding remarks and highlights areas in which further research and discussion are required so data visualisations can be used to the greatest effect in the research communication sector.

While a number of claims have been made around the potential of data visualisation as a communication tool, there has been a relative lack of informed discussion around the role that data visualisation can play in the research communication sector.

This report builds on our experiences of producing data visualisations and in data journalism more broadly, and brings together the lessons we have learned with insights from the broader sector of research communication. What follows will help researchers, research communication managers and journalists to make more informed decisions about when to invest in data visualisations in order to meet research communication goals."

My source: SciDev.net on twitter

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