How to best visualize uncertainty

Interview with Paolo Eusebi

Our job as statisticians focuses primarily on the analysis and communication of uncertainty in its many aspects. For this episode, I think of uncertainty as the variability in the population we are studying, the uncertainty around estimates, or the model uncertainty, which we might capture via looking into various models.

Interestingly, the visualization of uncertainty – one of the primary forms we use to communicate it – is a rather unknown field. In this episode, I’m very excited to speak with Paolo Eusebi, who has done research in this field to answer the following questions:

  • What can we learn from examples outside of medical research? How is it explained to the general public?
  • What’s the current status in medical research?
  • How can we become better in communication of uncertainty?
  • What are further excellent resources regarding the display uncertainty?

Listen to this episode and learn more:

Find the slides from Paolo here:

https://www.psiweb.org/docs/default-source/default-document-library/uncertainty_psi_200827_pe.pptx?sfvrsn=1838dadb_0

View also the webinar about visualization here (only for PSI members):

https://www.psiweb.org/vod/item/psi-webinar-using-visualisation-to-help-make-decisions

Resources:

  • Cairo, Alberto. The truthful art: Data, charts, and maps for communication. New Riders, 2016.
  • The MU Collective directed by Jessica Hullman and Matt Kay
  • Wilke, Claus O. Fundamentals of data visualization. O’Reilly Media, 2019. 
  • PSI Visualisation Special Interest Group (VIS SIG)                          
  • Van der Bles et al. “Communicating uncertainty about facts, numbers and science” Royal Society open science 6.5 (2019): 181870.
  • Bonneau et al. “Overview and state-of-the-art of uncertainty visualization.” Scientific Visualization. Springer, London, 2014. 3-27.
  • Spaghetti Plots and Hurricanes’ Paths                

Paolo Eusebi

Contract Statistician

Statistician with broad experience in all aspects of biostatistics, epidemiology and health services evaluation.
Interested in consulting offers.

Specialties: Data management, data analysis, research projects.
Knowledge of main statistical software packages such as SAS, STATA and R. 

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