The Visualization in Science and Education GRC is a premier, international scientific conference focused on advancing the frontiers of science through the presentation of cutting-edge and unpublished research, prioritizing time for discussion after each talk and fostering informal interactions among scientists of all career stages. The conference program includes a diverse range of speakers and discussion leaders from institutions and organizations worldwide, concentrating on the latest developments in the field. The conference is five days long and held in a remote location to increase the sense of camaraderie and create scientific communities, with lasting collaborations and friendships. In addition to premier talks, the conference has designated time for poster sessions from individuals of all career stages, and afternoon free time and communal meals allow for informal networking opportunities with leaders in the field.
The 2023 Gordon Research Conference on Visualization in Science and Education will continue the tradition of bringing together a multi-disciplinary group including researchers from the social and natural sciences, artists, technologists, journalists, educators from formal and informal settings, and others engaged in the production, study, and application of visualizations to advance and promote scientific understanding. The theme for the 2023 conference is "Visualizing Complex Systems", which will involve exploration of multi-dimensional topics such as climate change, epidemics, Indigenous knowledge systems, and social justice. The Gordon Research Conference offers an ideal format for exploring such topics due to its residential setting and highly collaborative atmosphere that promotes discovery of new intersections between fields. Mini grants are provided to support further development of collaborations that emerge in the meeting.
The study of complex systems typically involves what Rittel and Webber (1973) describe as “wicked problems,” that defy simplistic analysis. They are inherently interdisciplinary, with phenomena and dynamic relationships colliding and intersecting in ways that ill fit traditional disciplinary categorization. Helping people see the order in systems through visualization of this complexity is, itself, a wicked problem, often involving the mashing of data from different fields with significant consequences for how researchers and stakeholders can advance knowledge for the common good.
In the 2023 Gordon Research Conference on Visualization in Science and Education, speakers will apply technical, ethical, artistic, scientific, educational and philosophical lenses to how visualizations can clarify or intensify the uncertainty inherent in natural, engineered, social, biological (and hybrids of all these) systems. We will also consider how the mind understands systems and how visualizations support or obstruct mental systems-model building. We will apply the collective wisdom of speakers and participants to understand how visualizations can support both scientific analysis and public decision making around pressing socio-scientific issues.