Alongside the new ICA Commission on Cognitive Visualization, the Map Design Commission held a series of very well attended sessions at the Association of American Geographer’s annual meeting in New York 23-28 February.
A wide array of papers explored overarching issues of the value of design in mapping to specifics including the way colour is applied in particular circumstances and reworkings of the Minard map. The best papers from the sessions will be published as part of a Special Issue of The Cartographic Journal later this year and evidences the importance of design in mapping.
More generally, there was quite a focus on mapping at the conference and a particularly well attended session by the team at the New York Times graphics department gave an insight into their work. The maps and infographics in the New York Times are widely recognised as being some of the clearest, cleanest contemporary examples of good design and the session showcased much of their work and processes.