Visualization and Communication

Working Group 6



The principal objective of WG 6 is to explore the application of visualization and interaction design to the challenges involved in standardizing, browsing, analysing, and understanding the unprecedented quantity of epistolary data and metadata potentially brought together on the digital infrastructure envisaged by the Action. After studying the results of previous work and the strategies for co-designing a next-generation research environment (I), the core task of WG 6 will to conceptualize and specify a new generation of visualization tools applicable to all stages of the process of working with epistolary materials (II). The group’s secondary task is to consider the enhancement of this core infrastructure with means of communicating both the scholarly and the technical interest of the Action to a variety of different audiences, within (III) and especially beyond (IV) the academy. These four main tasks are outlined in more detail in the agenda below.


WG 6 is lead by Paolo Ciuccarelli, an Associate Professor at the Department of Design of the Politecnico di Milano (Italy) and Scientific Director of its DensityDesign Research Lab.



I. Existing tools and approaches: an overview of previous work

  1. collecting and analysing available visualization tools identifying possible collaborations with other institutions and projects;
  2. developing co-design strategies to be applied in future collaborations;
  3. collecting possible case studies within the COST Action to be used in first prototype/experiments;
  4. outlining a general strategy for the design of a future digital platform/environment (together with the other group and especially with WG3 and WG4).

II. Conceptualizing and specifying new tools and approaches

  1. helping scholars express and articulate their own experiences with the use of visualization tools and, more in general, with the relational dimension of the data;
  2. defining how interaction design and data visualization can contribute to the process of uploading, refining, and enriching the data, with a particular reference to RDF;
  3. defining how interaction design and data visualization can participate in the process of exploring the data with a particular interest on the interpretative nature of humanistic modes of inquiry.

III. Communication within the scholarly community

  1. coordinating the communication and the online presence of the COST Action, notably in the design of a highly interactive Action website;
  2. designing, specifying, and costing the creation of a scholarly networking platform;
  3. designing, specifying, and costing the creation of an on-board, born-digital scholarly journal, integrated into the union catalogue, and devoted to new kinds of scholarly publication building directly on both large archives of data and metadata and on interactive and animated visualizations of them.

IV. Communication with broader publics

  1. discussing the multiplicity of publics (archives, libraries, museums, universities, schools, publishers, and other cultural heritage institutions) which might be served by the digital infrastructure at the heart of the Action and the enhanced forms of visualization, communication, and interaction facilitated by it;
  2. outlining diverse strategies and tactics needed to build proactive and effective reciprocal relationships with those publics, including potentially new forms of digital publication and dissemination.