Schuneman Symposium Focuses On Data Visualization In Storytelling

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The E. W. Scripps School of Journalism and the School of Visual Communication in the Scripps College of Communication are sponsoring the annual Schuneman Symposium on Tuesday, March 25 at the Baker Center Theater.

The topic this year is “Data Reportage: Seeing Stories in Numbers” and it features five top speakers from national news organizations such as Bloomberg and National Geographic.  There are also representatives from the Memphis Commercial-Appeal, the Poynter Institute and Knight Lab at Northwestern University.

Juan Velasco, senior editor arts and graphics for National Geographic, will open the gathering at 9 a.m. talking about how his publication is visualizing meaningful data for global audiences.   Before joining National Geographic, he was a graphics reporter at El Mundo in Spain and the graphics arts director at the New York Times.  His specialty is combining journalism, art, and design to convey complex stories.

Lisa Strausfeld, the global head of data visualization for Bloomberg, will speak at 10:30.  She joined Bloomberg in 2012 and leads a group developing interactive data products for Bloomberg. She previously spent 10 years with Pentagram working with private clients.  She was given the 2010 National Design Award for Interaction Design and holds five patents for user interfaces.

The afternoon will be launched by John Sale, the visuals editor at the Commercial-Appeal.  He also is a 1980 Ohio University graduate.  He has spent 27 years as a picture editor in Memphis, as well as, in Pittsburgh and Spokane, Washington.

Zach Wise, of Northwestern, will talk at 3:05 about “Data as Context in Storytelling.” He is an Emmy Award winning interactive producer and Associate Professor at The Medill School of Journalism. He also spent time as a visiting professor at the School of Visual Communication at Ohio University.  He founded the original Soul of Athens initiative.  He has won numerous major awards throughout his career in Las Vegas and at the New York Times

Wise is an Athens native and earned his master’s degree in photojournalism from Ohio University in 2006.

The final speaker of the day will be Sara Quinn of the Poynter Institute.  She teaches visual journalism and multimedia.  The title of her presentation is “Finding the Heart of the Story.”

She has developed eye tracking research for newspapers, tablets, and online reading habits that is used throughout the news industry. Before joining Poynter, she worked at news outlets across the nation, as well as, in Europe and Canada.

The Schuneman Symposium on Photojournalism and New Media is an annual event funded by a grant from Ohio University alumni R. Smith and Patricia Schuneman. Each year, it focuses on a cutting-edge topic in mass communication. 

The symposium is free and open to all members of the public.  You do not need to be affiliated with Ohio University to attend.