Data Science By Design (DSxD): Best Practices of Visual Storytelling

Data Science By Design (DSxD) is a community of practice to curate ideas about data narratives, innovative communication approaches and aesthetic visual design principles. This project aims to conscientiously develop the future of data science with diversity, inclusion, and open education as guiding principles that incorporate transparent research practices and accessible training. Our events and resources will empower and support attendees to produce visual content that effectively and artfully communicates the practice of data science research in the form of how-to guides, infographics, and zines. Community-developed products will be made freely available to the wider data science community.

The motivation for “Data Science By Design” is to make the methods and outcomes of data science more accessible to individuals from a wide range of disciplinary, cultural, and educational backgrounds. Our approach makes the work of data scientists more transparent and emphasizes the creativity required for data science jobs. The goal is to provide a space for technical ideas to be shared in an accessible way, and an opportunity for data scientists to learn the tools and gain the personal contacts to help them communicate their work and practice to a wider audience. In this new community of practice, data scientists will be able to work with and mutually learn from specialists in a variety of creative fields, including data visualization, graphic design, and art.

Two upcoming 1-day virtual events (in Late Spring and Early Fall 2021) will focus on developing narratives to communicate data-centric research, and support the creation of informative and design-conscious content for sharing the best practice of data science. This series of support-centered events is intended to help participants learn about concepts like narrative structure and design, while considering how creative tools can be leveraged to empower data scientists to become effective storytellers. Participants’ work will eventually be collected into an anthology, with components that may take the form of a comic, a zine, an interactive visualization, or an illustrated personal story — and we may even expand past the visual by possibly including data sonification or spoken word. Whatever the product, it will demonstrate the many ways that data scientists can make their daily work and research discoveries more accessible and transparent.

Anyone who has a data story to tell, or is a creator interested in learning more about data science is welcome to engage and participate. Use the Data Science By Design Interest Form to submit your ideas for programming and suggestions for speakers who are actively creating visual or narrative content for data science (interpreted broadly) at our upcoming events. Sign up for the Data Science By Design listserv to receive notifications about upcoming events, grants, or resources organized by the DSxD team.

Project Leads

  • Ciera Martinez is BIDS’ Research Lead for Biodiversity and Environmental Science, and a former BIDS Data Science Fellow. She is a biologist and data scientist researching how organisms react and evolve in response to their environment. 
  • BIDS Data Science Fellow Váleri Vásquez is a graduate student at UC Berkeley studying the use of genetic-based interventions like CRISPR-Cas9 for the control of mosquito-borne diseases.
  • Former BIDS Data Science Fellow Sara Stoudt is a lecturer in the Statistical & Data Sciences Program at Smith College, and will be an Assistant Professor of Statistics at Bucknell University in Fall 2021. She is a statistician with research interests in ecology and the communication of statistics. 

Data Science By Design is funded by Code for Science and Society and an ADSA Career Development Network Seed Grant.

News and Events

New anthology, community celebrates creativity in data science
June 7, 2022  |  Rachel Leven  |  CDSS News

Data Science by Design (DSxD) book launch: ‘The Future of Data Science’
June 1, 2022  |  Marsha Fenner  |  BIDS News

Data Science by Design (DSxD) Grants & Anthology, "The Future of Data Science" — Apply June 1-18
May 27, 2021  |  BIDS News

DSxD Creator Conference
May 27-28, 2021

Data Science By Design
January 28, 2021 | Ciera Martinez, Váleri Vásquez, Sara Stoudt  |  Data Science By Design, Medium

BIDS Affiliates

Ciera Martinez

Biology and Environmental Sciences Lead

Sara Stoudt

BIDS Alum - Data Science Fellow

Váleri N. Vásquez

Energy and Resources Group