Cognitive and psychological science insights to improve climate change data visualization

Harold, Jordan, Lorenzoni, Irene, Shipley, Thomas F. and Coventry, Kenny R. (2016) Cognitive and psychological science insights to improve climate change data visualization. Nature Climate Change, 6. pp. 1080-1089. ISSN 1758-678X

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Visualization of climate data plays an integral role in the communication of climate change findings to both expert and non-expert audiences. The cognitive and psychological sciences can provide valuable insights into how to improve visualization of climate data based on knowledge of how the human brain processes visual and linguistic information. We review four key research areas to demonstrate their potential to make data more accessible to diverse audiences: directing visual attention, visual complexity, making inferences from visuals, and the mapping between visuals and language. We present evidence-informed guidelines to help climate scientists increase the accessibility of graphics to non-experts, and illustrate how the guidelines can work in practice in the context of Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change graphics.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: climate change,communication,psychology
Faculty \ School: Faculty of Social Sciences > School of Psychology
Faculty of Science > School of Environmental Sciences
Depositing User: Pure Connector
Date Deposited: 10 Dec 2016 00:05
Last Modified: 31 Aug 2020 23:45
DOI: 10.1038/NCLIMATE3162

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