2017-2018 Dean’s Research Fellows: Data Storytelling, Visualization and Communication

Pedro Cruz, Assistant Professor, Art + Design

Sarah Jackson, Associate Professor, Communication Studies

Brooke Foucault Welles, Associate Professor, Communication Studies

John Wihbey, Assistant Professor, Journalism


This research team is using census data to examine and make visible the population flows in and to the United States from 1790 to 2010. Their study focuses on three areas: 1) resident foreign population by place of origin, 2) internal U.S. migration flows and extraction of underlying network, 3) identification of missing populations and stories that bring to light issues of race and inequality in the United States. Data visualization tools are used to illustrate findings and create awareness about issues of immigration, race, and justice. The team will create an exhibition featuring physical objects that tell stories based on the data, and will work toward the creation of an online interactive visualization tool allowing users to compare states and specific population groups. The project serves as a poignant example of how the arts, humanities, social sciences, and data science can work together to illuminate trends and patterns that underscore historical and contemporary inequalities in the U.S.