Places & Spaces: Mapping Science Exhibit

The Places & Spaces: Mapping Science Exhibit visited the University of Michigan Hatcher Graduate Library from March 7 through May 24, 2011.

From my trip to the exhibit — the Network Science Research poster from University of Michigan contributors featured prominently at the entrance:


 From the poster:

The works presented here were invited to accompany the international Places & Spaces: Mapping Science exhibit on display at the University of Michigan Library in March 1 to May 24, 2011.

The maps showcase excellence in network science research and education at the University of Michigan. They were created in many different areas of science, including medicine, bioinformatics, sociology, organizational studies, information science, and physics, to advance our understanding of the structure and dynamics of networks.

On a practical side, Jeff Horon’s map demonstrates the innovative usage of science analysis and mapping in support of team formation and grant proposal writing that helped secure a P30 award by National Institutes of Health that finances a new Nutrition Obesity Research Center at the University of Michigan.

It is our hope that the Mapping Science exhibit will inspire future collaborations across disciplinary and geospatial boundaries, the application of effective visualization techniques to communicate the results of these studies, and the adoption of advanced data analysis and visualization methods to improve daily decision making.

Download the poster: PDF

The exhibit features maps describing the power of maps, reference systems, and forecasts as well as science maps for economic decision makers, policy makers, and scholars. These are the ‘stars of the show’ but I won’t go into detail here since they are already well-described on the exhibit website.

The exhibit also features WorldProcessor Globes reflecting ‘Patterns of Patents & Zones of Invention’ over time and across geography:


Patterns of Patents & Zones of Invention [WorldProcessor #286]

“This globe plots the total amount of patents granted worldwide, beginning in 1883 with just under 50,000, hitting 650,000 in 1993 (near the North Pole), and (shifting the scale to the southern hemisphere) continuing to 2002 on a rapid climb towards 1 million. Geographic regions where countries offer environments conducive to fostering innovation are represented by topology. Additionally, nations where residents are granted an average of 500 or more US patents per year are called out in red by their respective averages in the years after 2000. © 2005 Ingo Gunther”


And the ‘Shape of Science’ given “quantified connectivities and relative flows of inquiry within the world of science”:


“This rendering is of a prospective tangible sculpture of the Shape of Science, based on the research of Richard Klavans and Kevin Boyack, spatializing the quantified connectivities and relative flows of inquiry within the world of science. © 2006 Ingo Gunther w/ Stephen Oh”


The exhibit also includes interactive video monitors and hands-on maps for kids.

 Attributions and Acknowledgements:

Network Science Research Poster

“Several University of Michigan faculty created maps included in the exhibit: Santiago Schnell, Molecular and Integrative Physiology; Lada Adamic, School of Information; M. E. J. Newman, Physics; Jeff Horon, Medical School; Helena Buhr, Natalie Cotton, and Jason Owen-Smith, Sociology and Organizational Studies.”


Overall Exhibit

Places & Spaces is curated Dr. Katy Börner and Michael J. Stamper, School of Library and Information Science at Indiana University. Places & Spaces also receives input from the Places and Spaces Advisory Board. The exhibit is sponsored by the National Science Foundation under Grant No. IIS-0238261, CHE-0524661, IIS-0737783 and IIS-0715303; the James S. McDonnell Foundation; Thomson Scientific/Reuters; Elsevier; the Cyberinfrastructure for Network Science Center, University Information Technology Services, and the School of Library and Information Science, all three at Indiana University. Some of the data used to generate the science maps is from Thomson Scientific/Reuters.

Thank you to Dr. Katy Börner and Michael J. Stamper for curating the exhibit. Thank you to Tim Utter and Rebecca Hill for bringing the exhibit to the University of Michigan.

This exhibit was mentioned in press at:

Heritage Newspapers Online and Print Editions

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