Data Storytelling for Librarians and the Data Storytelling Toolkit

 This fall, with Dr. Matt Turk and RA Xinhui Hu, we launched the Data Storytelling Toolkit for Librarians project (https://imls.gov/grants/awarded/re-250094-ols-21) with a free webinar on 9/30 (recording publicly available at https://mediaspace.illinois.edu/media/t/1_69ag1gj0) and 675 registrants! 

The Data Storytelling Toolkit for Librarians (DSTL project website: https://uiucdstl.wixsite.com/uiucdstl) will connect real-world examples of data use with data stories (including narrative strategies and data visualizations) as adaptable templates for communicating and related online free resources for data exploration and visualization. The long-term vision is to cultivating data storytelling expertise as a signature expertise of our field, so that when communities have data storytelling needs, they are met at libraries and by librarians.

As of 11/15/22, we have collected 11 data use scenarios, which we're now calling "common storytelling needs." The goal is to develop support for the most common stories that librarians need to tell with and about the data they collect. The top 5 are being determined by triangulating interview (5/15/22-8/15/22), survey (9/30/22- 11/1/22), and workshop (9/30/22 and 11/15/22) data.

This topic is so much in demand that we’ve had to expand opportunities for participation. The design has not changed, but we’ve scaled up to 6x the expected participation in the initial webinar and 2x the expected participation in the Core Design Team workshops. We’ll use this scale for planning as we go forward to Phase 2, starting in the spring.


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