Best Paper Awards

Best paper and honorable mention awards are selected by a dedicated committee of experienced community members. Both awards recognize outstanding work from the pool of accepted papers. Best paper committees use a variety of criteria to select the best paper including potential impact to the community, the importance of any results obtained, technical challenges overcome, etc.

Full Papers

The Best Papers Committee for VIS 2021 full papers consists of five distinguished members: Stephen North (Chair), Tatiana Landesberger von Antburg, Stefan Bruckner, Ingrid Hotz, and G. Elisabeta Marai. The Papers Chairs Committee would like to thank the Best Papers Committee for their work and to congratulate the awardees!

Best Papers

Feature Curves and Surfaces of 3D Asymmetric Tensor Fields
Authors: Shih-Hsuan Hung, Yue Zhang, Harry Yeh, Eugene Zhang

Justification: “This paper makes fundamental advances to the field of asymmetric tensor field visualization. It contributes a novel topological approach in conjunction with a practical algorithmic solution. Thus, this study addresses a challenging problem with outstanding, innovative solutions, and has high potential to impact future visualization applications in tensor visualization.”

IRVINE: Using Interactive Clustering and Labeling to Analyze Correlation Patterns: A Design Study from the Manufacturing of Electrical Engines
Authors: Joscha Eirich, Jakob Bonart, Dominik Jäckle, Michael Sedlmair, Ute Schmid, Kai Fischbach, Tobias Schreck, Jürgen Bernard

Justification: “This paper is a model design study on applying visual analytics to a manufacturing process. It addresses a practical, emerging, and largely unexplored problem, and presents exemplary collaborative work highlighting the power of visual analytics. The proposed solution was developed in deep collaboration with domain experts over several iterations, carefully distilling tasks and effective visualizations. The paper showcases a strong evaluation, and convincingly demonstrates the practical utility of the proposed analytics and interaction modalities that clearly improve the performance of manufacturing engineering professionals in analytic tasks.”

Perception! Immersion! Empowerment! Superpowers as Inspiration for Visualization
Authors: Wesley Willett, Bon Adriel Aseniero, Sheelagh Carpendale, Pierre Dragicevic, Yvonne Jansen, Lora Oehlberg, Petra Isenberg

Justification: “This paper is bold, innovative, fun, thorough and persuasive, and a wonderful and rare example of breakthrough, creative thinking about data visualization research. It introduces two theoretical frameworks to explore the dual issue of epistemic powers (i.e. that advance knowledge) in vision and cognition, and their important key mechanics, which span instruments to fairness and accessibility. It provides an original, important and legitimate perspective on what we do, including a wider perspective on evaluating the benefits of visualization. This paper will be remembered for many years for its original perspective, thought-provoking messages and persuasive explanations.”

Simultaneous Matrix Orderings for Graph Collections
Authors: Nathan van Beusekom, Wouter Meulemans, Bettina Speckmann

Justification: “This paper presents a technically sound approach and novel evaluation technique for simultaneous matrix ordering of multiple graphs. This is an important problem in graph comparison and in dynamic graph visualization. The paper is outstanding in its clarity, and aims at reproducible results. The evaluation that is presented should have considerable impact on future research. This work has wide applicability both in graph drawing, and in other matrix-based visualizations.”

Best Paper Honorable Mentions

An Evaluation-Focused Framework for Visualization Recommendation Algorithms
Authors: Zehua Zeng, Phoebe Moh, Fan Du, Jane Hoffswell, Tak Yeon Lee, Sana Malik, Eunyee Koh, Leilani Battle

Augmenting Sports Videos with VisCommentator
Authors: Zhutian Chen, Shuainan Ye, Xiangtong Chu, Haijun Xia, Hui Zhang, Huamin Qu, Yingcai Wu

Causal Support: Modeling Causal Inferences with Visualizations
Authors: Alex Kale, Yifan Wu, Jessica Hullman

Communicating Visualizations without Visuals: Investigation of Visualization Alternative Text for People with Visual Impairments
Authors: Crescentia Jung, Shubham R. Mehta, Atharva Kulkarni, Yuhang Zhao, Yea-Seul Kim

Context Matters: A Theory of Semantic Discriminability for Perceptual Encoding Systems
Authors: Kushin Mukherjee, Brian N. Yin, Brianne E. Sherman, Laurent Lessard, Karen Schloss

Explanatory Journeys: Visualising to Understand and Explain Administrative Justice Paths of Redress
Authors: Jonathan C. Roberts, Peter W. S. Butcher, Ann Sherlock, Sarah Nason

Interactive Exploration of Physically-Observable Objective Vortices in Unsteady 2D Flow
Authors: Xingdi Zhang, Markus Hadwiger, Thomas Theussl, Peter Rautek

KG4Vis: A Knowledge Graph-Based Approach for Visualization Recommendation
Authors: Haotian Li, Yong Wang, Songheng Zhang, Yangqiu Song, Huamin Qu

Loon: Using Exemplars to Visualize Large Scale Microscopy Data
Authors: Devin Lange, Eddie Polanco, Robert L. Judson-Torres, Thomas A. Zangle, Alexander Lex

M^2Lens: Visualizing and Explaining Multimodal Models for Sentiment Analysis
Authors: Xingbo Wang, Jianben He, Zhihua Jin, Muqiao Yang, Yong Wang, Huamin Qu

Real-Time Visual Analysis of High-Volume Social Media Posts
Authors: Johannes Knittel, Steffen Koch, Tan Tang, Wei Chen, Yingcai Wu, Shixia Liu, Thomas Ertl

Rethinking the Ranks of Visual Channels
Authors: Caitlyn M. McColeman, Fumeng Yang, Timothy F. Brady, Steven Franconeri

SightBi: Exploring Cross-View Data Relationships with Biclusters
Authors: Maoyuan Sun, Abdul Rahman Shaikh, Hamed Alhoori, Jian Zhao

spEuler: Semantics-preserving Euler Diagrams
Authors: Rebecca Kehlbeck, Jochen Görtler, Yunhai Wang, Oliver Deussen

VBridge: Connecting the Dots Between Features and Data to Explain Healthcare Models
Authors: Furui Cheng, Dongyu Liu, Fan Du, Yanna Lin, Alexandra Zytek, Haomin Li, Huamin Qu, Kalyan Veeramachaneni

VizSnippets: Compressing Visualization Bundles Into Representative Previews for Browsing Visualization Collections
Authors: Michael Oppermann, Tamara Munzner

Short Papers

The awards for short papers were selected by the best paper committee (short papers) from a competitive list of candidates.

We would like to thank the committee members
Markus Hadwiger,
Yunhai Wang,
and Yingcai Wu
for their work and dedication.

Congratulations to the awardees!

Best Papers

Jurassic Mark: Inattentional Blindness for a Datasaurus Reveals that Visualizations are Explored, not Seen
Authors: Tal Boger, Steven Most, Steven Franconeri

Best Paper Honorable Mentions

Semantic Resizing of Charts Through Generalization: A Case Study with Line Charts
Authors: Vidya Setlur, Haeyong Chung

Exact Analytical Parallel Vectors
Authors: Hanqi Guo, Tom Peterka


We would like to thank the members of the best poster committee: Alex Endert, Christophe Hurter, and Daniel Jönsson. The committee received a short list of the top 6 posters, which were recommended as best poster candidates by the reviewers. After resolving potential conflicts of interest, they selected 1 best poster and 2 honorable mention awards.

Congratulations to the awardees!

Best Poster

Towards Automatic Grading of D3.js Visualizations Authors: Matthew Hull, Connor Guerin, Justin Chen, Susanta Routray, Duen Horng Chau

Best Poster Honorable Mentions

TrafficVis: Fighting Human Trafficking Through Visualization Authors: Catalina Vajiac, Andreas Olligschlaeger, Yifei Li, Pratheeksha Nair, Meng-Chieh Lee, Namyong Park, Reihaneh Rabbany, Duen Horng Chau, Christos Faloutsos

Argo Scholar: Interactive Visual Exploration of Literature in Browsers Authors: Kevin Li, Haoyang Yang, Anish Upadhayay, Zhiyan Zhou, Jon Saad-Falcon, Duen Horng Chau