Telling human stories with data

Telling human stories with data

Presented By Alan Rutter
Alan Rutter
Alan Rutter

Alan is a journalist, product owner, content consultant and trainer with over fifteen years’ experience working across digital, print and live content.
He is a specialist in communicating complex subjects through data visualization, writing, and design. As a consultant and trainer, he’s worked with government departments, leading media brands, charities, and startups.

Alan's brand new project is Fire Plus Algebra, which will be all about helping humans to thrive in a digital age. More details to come very soon. 

He is a Founding Member of Jolt, the innovative learning startup launching its London outpost in January 2019, where Alan delivers a range of courses to students around the world.

Alan runs workshops on infographics, data visualization and product management for General Assembly.

Alongside Simone Baird, Alan previously founded Clever Boxer, a consultancy that helps people to punch above their weight in business by being creative. They do this through events, training consultancy, and other interesting projects. Their clients have included Frieze, The Idler and Time Out. Find out more about what they do here.

Presentation Description

Robust data analysis underpins every business decision, public sector project, and non-profit initiative. But data in its raw form often fails to convince crucial lay audiences – either due to its complexity or due to suspicion and mistrust. And you can’t help get guide the world in the right direction made if you alienate key decision-makers. 

Visualization and narrative storytelling offer a path to bringing the numbers to life and persuading your audience – without losing the crucial truth that’s in the data. 

This workshop, delivered by journalist and data visualization specialist Alan Rutter,  will cover an audience-centered approach to visualizing data. 

It will introduce tried-and-tested techniques for communicating data-driven stories effectively to people from a broad range of backgrounds and deal with some of the common problems that practitioners encounter. 

We will discuss how to avoid landing at either extreme of the data visualization spectrum: bullet-proof academic analysis that fails to communicate a message; or fantastic aesthetic creations that actually say nothing at all. 

We will look at the ethics of data visualization, and how to be transparent about underlying data and methodologies. And we will discuss the considerations of different media, and how to tailor your visual approach to both your channels and audience. 

We will also look at how human beings interpret data, and how we can use design and psychology to our advantage. There is no focus on a specific tool or language, as it is far more important to have a clear idea of the intention and desired action than to obsess over a given language or piece of software. 

This workshop is suited to anyone who wants to create impact with the data they work with by turning it into compelling stories for other audiences – whether through printed materials, presentations, social media, or websites and apps.

Presentation Curriculum

Telling human stories with data
82:38
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