UDV Card Deck

A tool for ideation and reflection of urban data visualization

This tool aims to enhance discussions and stimulate creativity in the design process of urban data visualizations (UDV). The UDV card deck was developed to bridge the gap between theory and practice in workshop settings, facilitating a range of activities essential in data visualization projects. Drawing from urban visualization design literature and the results from a series of expert workshops, these cards summarize key aspects to consider when designing urban data visualizations.

The UDV card deck is structured to facilitate engaging, collaborative activities while offering a methodical approach to design. We are currently working on a website featuring the card deck to print or to use digitally, a curated collection of activities, and a set of case studies demonstrating its diverse use.

Selected Urban Data Visualization (UDV) cards, summarizing key considerations from urban visualization design literature. The cards present questions and considerations, fostering a structured yet engaging collaborative experience in workshops for researchers, designers, and practitioners in the field.

Background and Workshops

The UDV card deck consists of three types of cards each serving a unique function in the design process. It is based on the taxonomy of an urban visualization design space proposed by Goodwin et al., which provides the critical considerations and dimensions that need to be addressed during the visualization process. The UDV card deck makes this design space accessible and actionable, by allowing stakeholders to visually explore, engage, and deliberate on a wide array of considerations in a playful, interactive manner.

We have tested the utilization of the UDV card deck across various projects and workshops, showcasing its versatility and effectiveness in considering the human perspective in urban data visualization concepts.

In an initial demonstration at CityVis 2022, Damla Çay led participants through a practical exercise, employing the card deck to dissect and interpret urban data visualizations. CityVis, under the coordination of Sebastian Meier from FH Potsdam, serves as an interdisciplinary platform that fosters global exchange on urban visualization projects. Our lab contributed to organizing the CityVis workshops and competitions as one of the leading organizations.

Usage of the UDV Card Deck in workshops: On the left, participants engage in a reflective activity to analyze existing urban data visualizations. On the right, during an ideation session, the cards are utilized to incorporate human perspectives, enhancing urban data visualization sketches.

Additionally, the card deck was utilized in co-design workshops aimed at crafting practical urban data visualizations. A notable collaboration with our partners from Berlin TXL culminated in the creation of a dashboard that visually represents heat energy data at the former airport site, demonstrating the card deck’s applicability in real-world urban visualization projects.