Storytelling with data



In this video, professionals discuss data visualization and the impact that data storytelling can have on individuals and the world. Hear thoughts from Peter Misner, Principal at Canyon Creek Elementary, Cheryl Phillips, Hearst Professional in Residence at Stanford University, and Robert Kosara, Research Scientist at Tableau Software.

Storytelling brings data to life, allowing the viewer to make a personal connection to the information.

In this video, Pete Misner, Principal at Canyon Creek Elementary, Cheryl Phillips, Hearst Professional in Residence at Stanford University, and Robert Kosara, Research Scientist at Tableau Software discuss the importance of creating stories with data—emphasizing emotion and interactivity.

It’s interesting about storytelling and why it has such an impact. And I think it's because it really makes a personal connection. If you can find a personal connection in a vast amount of information, and then relate that to a person, they get it. And all of a sudden, they remember it more effectively. And the same thing happens with visualization.

Pete Misner, Principal at Canyon Creek Elementary in Bothell, Washington states, "I think storytelling is crucial to working with data of any kind because it has a conclusion. It leads to a next action—a call to action. It has a purpose."

Cheryl Phillips, Hearst Professional in Residence at Stanford University adds, "It’s interesting about storytelling and why it has such an impact. And I think it's because it really makes a personal connection. If you can find a personal connection in a vast amount of information, and then relate that to a person, they get it. And all of a sudden, they remember it more effectively. And the same thing happens with visualization.

Emotion is a really important tool and you can get at it in all kinds of ways. If you are just doing narrative storytelling, you might do it through a really poignant quote or a description of a person. In visualization, you can do it through color and also a sense of where you are in a place."

"There’s been a lot of research in data visualization that’s been focused on exploration or analysis of data—but there’s a third part to it after exploration and analysis and that is the presentation of the data," says Robert Kosara, Research Scientist at Tableau Software. "And that’s very important because you want people to actually take action."



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