A “beautiful” encounter with David McCandless

I had the privilege to meet David McCandless, data journalist and founder of Information is Beautiful, at the European Commission 2019 #EUknowledge week.

David gave the opening keynote speech “Making complex knowledge meaningful – the power of data visualisation”. This is my live sketchnotes of his presentation.

Sketchnotes David McCandless

One of my colleagues summarised his speech as follow:

“We are engulfed in a sea of data. Using graphical images that everybody understands, helps to tell the story behind numbers. […] The story behind data doesn’t lie behind the numbers but in the message that the visualisation brings. […] Visualisation has the power of analysis, it turns data into a landscape that is ready for you to explore […] Data visualisation is like taking a photo, it brings into contrast what is in or out of focus, what is in the background, what is on the forefront. As a data journalist David feels close to photography journalism. You can zoom in or you can go wide to tell your story […] Visualisation unlocks what needs to be known, it gives clarity to big data.  […] To be better understood you convert to a visual language. When you can encode the message in visualisation you bring clarity and there is beauty in clarity. “

I am so happy and honoured that David signed my sketchbook with “Beautiful”. It means a lot to me from the man who wrote “Information is beautiful” and “Knowledge is beautiful“.

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Visualisation of the 2017 #EURegionsWeek on Twitter

My original Visualisation of #EURegionsWeek 2017 on Twitter article is now  published on the Regional Studies, Regional Science open access journal.

It gives me a sense of pride that @RSRS_OA asked me to publish my data visualisation in their journal. I’d like to thank them very much for giving me this opportunity.

As so often with me, I started this project as an experiment. Little by little I worked on the data and, after a lot of tests, I finally arrive at this beautiful visualization. I anticipated that there was more to say, then I continued my investigation to conclude the article with the influencers.

I acknowledge that being published on the Regional Studies, Regional Science journal is a nice recognition. Nevertheless, I still prefer my original article where I allow my visitors to interact with the graph and with data. And as a bonus, I also give them some background information about the methodology and the used tools.

 

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