The Art (and Importance) of Data Storytelling
The Art (and Importance) of Data Storytelling


Data is everywhere – which makes fluency in understanding, using, and communicating with, and about, data an essential skill. Often, we focus on building impressive visualizations and models only to find our audience confused about what we need them to actually learn, or act on, from our data. Data storytelling helps to bridge the gap between data practitioners (those diving deeply into data to make predictions and highlight trends) and data consumers (those who just want and need the trends and recommendations). As data scientists, we have the ability and interest to dig into data to learn its stories. Moving from a data scientist to a data storyteller allows us to share those stories with those who are not as immersed in the data. Data storytelling helps push you from data interpreter to data influencer.
In this talk, you’ll learn more about the importance of developing a story for your data and some of the initial ways to build a cohesive narrative. We’ll use the science of human vision and processing to talk through some best practices for creating high leverage visualizations that strengthen data stories. We’ll also look at how we can make improvements and enhancements to visualizations to add power to our stories in order to get and sustain our audiences’ attention.
The most impressive data analysis is useless without the ability to clearly communicate essential takeaways and offer up persuasive recommendations. Data scientists of any technical level will benefit from learning about how to better communicate with data. Taking a storytelling approach to sharing your data can help get your work noticed and recommendations heard.


Diedre is a Lead Data Storytelling Trainer at StoryIQ where she helps organizations improve their communication with and about data. An accidental math teacher, Diedre learned the power of demystifying numbers in New York City classrooms and the power of influencing decision-makers with data during her time running for the NYC Department of Education. Diedre is an Adjunct Lecturer at Hunter College in New York and has spoken at NCTM, iNACOL, and Learning Forward about adult learning methodology and best practices in professional learning.

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