CoVis 2009

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CoVis 2009: Workshop on Collaborative Visualization on Interactive Surfaces[edit]

Approx. October 11, 2009, Atlantic City, New Jersey

In conjunction with VisWeek 2009 (Vis, InfoVis, VAST):


Submission deadline: August 1st, 2009 Notification of acceptance: August 26th, 2009 Final camera ready submissions: September 14th, 2009 Workshop: TBD - approx. October 11th, 2009


Prospective participants are invited to submit position papers of up to four pages in length which outline one or more potential topics/solutions to discuss during the workshop. Accepted Papers will be published in the technical report series of LMU Media Informatics. This means that they will receive an ISSN number.

Papers should be formatted according to the IEEE Vis/InfoVis 2009 format:

Submissions should be sent to Dominikus Baur: dominikus.baur(at)


It is common for small groups of people to gather around visual displays of information to discuss or interpret the information to form decisions. Groups can share the task load of exploring large and complex datasets and can share various interpretations of a dataset when working together. However, tools to support synchronous collaboration between several people in their data analysis are still relatively scarce. Traditionally, visualization and visual analytics tools have been designed from a single-user perspective and for desktop computers. While hardware such as multi-touch displays and network capabilities have emerged that lend themselves especially well to collaboration, software support for collaboration around visualizations is still relatively scarce. One of the reasons is that single-user systems do not necessarily translate well to collaborative scenarios or interactive surfaces and require specific re-design. The design of digital systems for collaboration around visualization and visual analytics systems, therefore, poses additional challenges: we need to understand (a) how people collaboratively work with visual representations of data and which methods they use to solve information analysis tasks as a team, and (b) what the exact design requirements are for collaborative visual analysis scenarios.

In this workshop we would like to discuss these challenges and discuss the role of interactive surfaces as an emerging technology for supporting collaborative visualization and visual analytics settings.

Topics of interest include, but are not limited to:

  • the design of information visualization, scientific visualization, or visual analytics interfaces and environments for co-located collaborative work,
  • design of interactive visual representations for collaborative work on interactive surfaces,
  • the use of interactive surfaces to visualize and interact with information and data,
  • social components in collaborative visual analysis environments,
  • aspects of cognition in multi-user visualization and visual analysis environments,
  • evaluation of collaborative information visualization, scientific visualization, and visual analytics systems,
  • multiple and coordinated views for collaborative visualization and data analysis systems,
  • design of multi-display environments for information analysis work,
  • collaborative visualization and visual analytics applications,
  • collaborative sensemaking, and
  • experience with traditional collaboration in information and data intensive fields.


The main objective of the workshop is to bring people from academia and industry with relevant backgrounds together (a) to discuss ongoing research work in the field of multi-user collaborative visualization and visual analytics and (b) to jointly investigate how interactive surfaces can contribute to this area. This includes the analysis of problems encountered in the field, the presentation of specific solutions, and the discussion of special characteristics compared to the core research areas. The workshop is intended to be a platform to exchange information and experiences, to stimulate discussion, and to identify novel aspects and ideas to the topics above. During this workshop, we would like to identify a number of open problems that need further investigation and identify priorities to target research in this direction.

We would like to put an emphasis on the following two (interrelated) questions:

  • What are the existing challenges inherent in designing interfaces for visualizing, exploring, and analyzing data in a collaborative fashion?
  • What unique challenges exist in building visualization systems for collaborative environments?


Petra Isenberg, University of Calgary (Primary Contact) Michael Sedlmair, BMW Group - Research and Technology Dominikus Baur, University of Munich Tobias Isenberg, University of Groningen Andreas Butz, University of Munich


Anastasia Bezerianos, Ecole Centrale Paris Nathalie Henry, Microsoft Research Stacey Scott, University of Waterloo Michael Haller, Upper Austria University of Applied Sciences Johannes Schöning, DFKI Saarbrücken Shahram Izadi, Microsoft Research Raimund Dachselt, Otto-von-Guericke University Magdeburg Daniel Keim, University of Konstanz David S. Ebert, Purdue University Melanie Tory, University of Victoria


If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us at: petra.isenberg(at)

For more information, please see the workshop web site: