One dimension of my science communication activities has been creating visualizations of data and concepts that communicate key issues to diverse audiences. The following are select examples from visualization projects I have led. Please contact me if you are interested in high resolution versions or code. 


Population Trends

I created and developed a website, CTBirdTrends, with Chris Elphick that I maintained from 2012-2020. The goal of the site was to create a one-stop location for information on the latest population trends for every bird species in Connecticut that is represented in USGS’s Breeding Bird Survey. I offered several types of visualizations each of which had a distinct purpose:

  • Animations, which showed route-level data and its relationship to population trend estimates from Bayesian models (click screenshot below to go to animation)

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  • Movement charts (based on the Hans Rosling bubble chart), which allowed the user to create their own plots for any species or groups of species (e.g. by habitat association)

  • Super graphics, which showed population trends for every species represented in the data to facilitate inferences about community level trends and the state of Connecticut’s bird populations as a whole (click below for high resolution version)

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  • I updated the data, trend estimates, and graphics to support an article I wrote with with Dr. Robert Askins on the current state of early successional species for Connecticut Audubon Society's Connecticut State of the Birds. 

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Tidal marshes

I have created several visualizations to support communication and conservation surrounding coastal ecosystems and tidal marsh specialists, such as the Saltmarsh Sparrow (Ammospiza caudacuta).

  • Animated population trends. I am interested in finding new ways to communicate population trajectories, especially when the pattern is more complex than a simple increasing or declining trend line. 

  • Dashboards for management. I am interested in finding new ways to deliver complex data sets through simple interactive visualizations to inform ongoing management and conservation. Here are a few examples that integrate ecological and physical data for coastal and marine species that I created for the Atlantic Coast Joint Venture. 

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  • Soundscapes. I have been exploring the potential of artificial soundscapes for communicating population trends and extinction risk. The benefits of using audio instead of or in addition to graphics and pictures potentially include adding an immersive quality, highlighting often overlooked aspects of species at risk (especially for species that are heard more often than seen), and adding a sense of realism to communicating what can be lost. I created the soundscape below for bird species that are tidal marsh specialists. The frequency of singing is determined both by published data on singing rates and the relative abundance of species from population projections. 

  • I have incorporated several visualizations into an online 'scrollytelling' story (currently under development) that aims to introduce a general audience to the ways in which sea-level rise has influenced the natural history and future of a unique group of coastal specialists, including the Saltmarsh Sparrow (Ammospiza caudacuta).


Offshore wind

I have created several visualizations to support planning and decision making for offshore wind development, especially in the Atlantic Outer Continental Shelf. Links to the two primary apps, CollideR and RepoweR, will be live in early 2022. 

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Interactive visualizations for teaching

I have created several interactive apps with R 'Shiny' to communicate difficult concepts in statistics for teaching at the graduate level, especially Bayesian updating, uncertainty, and sampling. Screenshots from select apps are shown below; click to visit the apps.

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