VEC Candidates - VIS 2022 Elections

VIS Executive Committee (VEC) Candidates

The VIS Executive Committee (VEC) oversees the planning and success of IEEE VIS. The VEC solicits bids for future VIS conferences, is involved in their planning, and evaluates how well each VIS has achieved its objectives. The VEC makes proposals for change for ratification by the VSC, and implements improvements to better meet conference objectives. It approves associated events, proposes most OC positions, and works with the OC to deliver the conference.

The VEC provides oversight and planning for the VIS conference as described in the VIS Charter.

The 2022 candidates for the VEC are:

Matthew Brehmer

The IEEE VIS conference has been the primary home for my research and the central hub of my professional network. Between 2013 and 2015, I presented the entirety of my PhD dissertation work at the IEEE VIS conference, and I benefited immensely from the mentorship that I received at the VIS doctoral colloquium, an experience that also led to several fruitful collaborations. Since completing my doctoral studies, I have enjoyed giving back to the VIS community by serving four times on the VIS organizing committee (as VisInPractice co-chair), five times as a member of the program committee, as a member of the 2018–19 subcommittee to attract and retain practitioners at VIS, and as a contributor to 2018 BIRS workshop on restructuring IEEE VIS for the future.

The past few years have been an exciting time for the field of visualization, one that has presented new opportunities for engagement between researchers and practitioners. In particular, I point to the 2019 establishment of the Data Visualization Society (DVS) and the affirmation of data visualization design and engineering as professions. In 2020-21 I served on the DVS nomination committee that oversaw the appointment of a new board of directors, ensuring that engagement with visualization researchers and educators continue to be part of the society’s mandate. If elected to the VEC, I will conversely promote engagement with professional visualization practice as an important part of IEEE VIS’s mandate. I firmly stand with recent calls to broaden the intellectual diversity of the VIS conference, and to me this means more than the inclusion of research traditions from academic communities beyond those that have been historically well-represented at VIS: it means bringing researchers and practitioners together in a common forum, with beneficial outcomes for both groups. I believe that my role and experience as an industry-based researcher will enable me to take on such community-building initiatives at VIS.

Stefan Bruckner

I am an active participant, contributor, and organizer that has been a member of our community for over 15 years (see I care deeply about it and would like to further devote my efforts to its growth and development. I am willing to take on and carry through tasks and believe to be able to constructively engage in the governance of VIS.

One of my main goals is to continue the process of fostering democracy, transparency, and diversity within our community. While we have made a lot of progress with respect to this in the past years, I believe there are still plenty of areas in need of improvement and I am devoted to engaging in further initiatives towards increased inclusivity and openness. This naturally includes aspects such as gender, ethnic background, and geography, but also extends to academic lineages and schools of thought. I also strongly support further developments towards open science. Despite several efforts in the community, here we still lag behind other fields, and it is critical that we bring together all stakeholders in order to find forward-looking solutions that go beyond the mere toleration of publicly available preprints.

As the premier scientific event in our field, VIS has an important responsibility in signaling minimum standards and best practices in terms of reproducibility, replicability, and availability of all scientific artifacts and this is an important challenge that we need to address. For example, the Graphics Replicability Stamp Initiative (GRSI) is gaining increasing traction and is already well integrated into several journal processes including TVCG. I think it would be interesting to investigate, whether something like this could be better and more prominently integrated into the VIS conference process, where there are of course several additional constraints regarding timeline, etc.

Finally, as a member of the Eurographics Executive Committee (since 2019, re-elected until the end of 2024), I believe I could also contribute to the coordination between organizations and communities.

Helwig Hauser

Being an active long-term member of the visualization research community, I have a sincere interest in the positive and successful development of our main events, with IEEE VIS undoubtedly being the most important one. My extensive experience from a wide variety of community services, including my current roles as Overall Papers Chairs of IEEE VIS 2022 and as Editor in Chief of Computer Graphics Forum, as well as the chairing and organization of numerous visualization events (for ex., as IEEE InfoVis Paper Chair in 2013 & 2014) as well as my service on a number of related Steering Committees (e.g., the EuroVis Steering Committee), could be a valuable contribution to the VEC’s main task to oversee the IEEE VIS organization. One particular goal would be to contribute to the review and further development of IEEE VIS after the recent unification – being OPC for IEEE VIS, this year, provides me with detailed close-up insights regarding the new structure and how it works. Thinking that bringing together the earlier separated branches of VIS was the right change and should be continued, I still see the need to further improve the current structure of VIS. One major question in this regard is the future trade-off between conference-first and journal-first routes into IEEE VIS. Further strengthening the latter may contribute to even better papers at IEEE VIS and to relaxing the overly packed time schedule that IEEE VIS is operated along.

Ingrid Hotz

I have been participating in and contributing to IEEE VIS since I started my PhD in this area and consider the community my scientific home. Now I am leading a group in Scientific Visualization at Linköping University and I have been actively engaged in the community for more than 20 years. So, I would be happy to take a part in further shaping its future development.

While I consider the community mostly welcoming this is not a naturally given fact but needs continuous active development. I think that probably the most important aspects thereby are to keep processes transparent and have democratic decisions. In this aspect, two points that I especially care about are improving diversity in participants and research topics. Understanding difficulties for underrepresented groups and attempts to improve diversity have drawn my attention since I started my academic career. As there are no easy answers and solutions, I would like to see an open active discussion about this topic in the community and if possible implement novel ideas. When it comes to the diversity of research topics also a continuous scientific renewal (like. the REVISE activities) and adaptation to current developments are important to maintaining VIS to be a relevant community that can keep its members. This means on the one hand side keeping high standards, but also being flexible and welcoming to new research developments and ensuring a positive and fair reviewing process.

Narges Mahyar

I am an Assistant Professor in the Manning College of Information and Computer Sciences at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. I am an interdisciplinary researcher conducting fundamental and applied research at the intersection of Visualization, HCI, and Social Computing. My research focuses on designing, developing, and evaluating socially impactful technologies and visualization techniques to reduce the marginalization and exclusion of minority voices and perspectives and empower people to make informed data-driven decisions. For the past 15 years, I have been an active member of the VIS and HCI communities. My work has resulted in 23 peer-reviewed journals and conference publications and has received several awards from the top visualization, social computing, and HCI venues, including four Best/Outstanding Paper Awards from the EuroVis 2022, CSCW 2020, VAST 14, the Council of Educators in Landscape Architecture 2017, and two Honorable Mention Awards from DIS 2021 and ISS 2016. Moreover, I have served in various leadership and organizing committee roles, such as Fast Forward Co-Chair (VIS 2019). Other examples include serving as Paper Co-Chair (Creativity and Cognition, 2021), AC/PC member (VIS 2022, 2020, CHI 2022, 2020 Creativity and Cognition 2018, 2017, ISS 2016, etc.), and Organizing Committee member (BELIV 2018, DEXIS 2015, etc.). Currently, I am serving as an Organizing Committee member for the Visualization for Social Good Workshop (Vis4Good) 2022.

My experiences and cross-disciplinary interchanges across VIS, HCI, and other communities (Digital Civics, Social Computing, Natural Language Processing, Architecture, Urban Planning, etc.) granted me a unique perspective on challenges and opportunities to propel the VIS community toward a more inclusive, collaborative, and interdisciplinary community. My objective is to contribute to the continuing growth of IEEE VIS as the premium venue in visualization research by supporting (1) a more diverse and inclusive community that provides ample opportunities for all members, including women and underrepresented groups, by highlighting their work and engaging them in leadership roles; (2) new venues for interdisciplinary research and opportunities such as meetups for applied researchers to facilitate broader networking across disciplines — especially among early career researchers — to communicate the importance of visualization research and build collaborations that foster impactful and innovative research; (3) equity of access by facilitating hybrid formats via augmented and virtual tools to extend opportunities across the world for presenting and sharing new and exciting research; and (4) transparency and open science practices via introducing incentives and approaches for encouraging the practice of open science within our community.

Jinwook Seo

I joined this community as a student almost 20 years ago. I was fortunate to see this community growing, with my students who enthusiastically presented their first papers at VIS now attending VIS with their own students. To make VIS become a more prosperous and sustainable community, I think it is important to make VIS more diverse and more connected. Our VIS community has strived to open up the barriers like gender, geographic region, academic genealogies, and even the three sub-conferences. Having served as an APC for the first and second unified VIS conferences, I believe we can make the unified VIS conference move forward and flourish. I believe great papers and constructive reviews are two important pillars of a great academic conference. I am happy to see many great VIS papers have been published, but I believe we need more community efforts to improve the overall quality of reviews. Starting from better recognizing great reviews, we can think of ways to transfer the knowledge and experience of writing great reviews to our whole community, especially to new VIS researchers. I believe our VIS community can be more strongly connected not only by presenting our own great research contributions but also by helping colleagues through great reviews.