By Gefion Thuermer – KCL

Data is a key resource for all MediaFutures participants, who use data to build solutions and art works. King’s College London hosted the Data Stories Symposium 2020 on 26th & 27th November, as part of their ‘Data Stories’ project, which explores how people engage with data.

The Symposium brought together experts from academia, industry and the third sector to discuss, generate ideas and inspire future interdisciplinary collaborations aiming to explore Human Data Interaction in relation to storytelling with data. In two half-days of presentations and workshops, participants at this free online event explored how to engage with data, and use it to create stories. Each session was also captured in a live drawing by artist Catherine Allan.

The series of talks and workshops shone a light on how data is used in many different contexts to frame the world we live in, and the issues we care about; how it is used in the arts or the news; how it is visualised, and how we can interact with it. In two interactive workshops, attendees drew comics to make data more accessible, and learned about and tried the ‘Smoking Gun’ game experience, which lets players work through a whistle-blower wanting to leak data.

More information, as well as recordings of the sessions and the visual summaries, are available at