The Concept of “Complementary Visualizations”

The concept of “Complementary Visualizations”

One main concept in knowledge visualization is to use complementary visualizations. Because, to communicate, elaborate, or understand complex issues it is fruitful to illustrate the issue from different perspectives and with different visualization methods. The use of complementary visualizations improves the transfer of knowledge in organizations compared to an individual visualization, text, or numbers.

The practice of architects of using complementary visualizations is a source for further investigation with relevance for knowledge management, communication science, and information visualization researchers. There are three reasons: (1) Architects combine, structure, and integrate different concepts. (2) Architects intuitively use complementary visualizations for knowledge-intense tasks. (3) Architects are experts in interfunctional communication (e.g., among decision makers, site constructors, local authorities). (4) Architects constantly think in and switch among different conceptual levels (e.g., urban scale or detail of a house).

A good example how visualization were used complementary is the Case Study Science City. If you want to find out more about the communication of the project Science City you can read the chapter in the module Strategy Visualization.

science city

This image was used to illustrate the idea that Science City attract the most talented people worldwide.


This infostructure was used infront of the Mensa. The people have to pass by every day and in doing so the internalize the key statements that were mapped on the floor.


This Virtual Science City was used in an exhibition in Berlin.


The famous Science City Map was used to illustrate the interrelation with Zurich and the world.


The main idea of an open and accessible campus is captured in this sketch.


In the design of the Infospot, a public project exhibition area, we 3D sketches were used in the designphase of the Infospot. The sketches are down with the 3D Software Sketchup. It is as simple that also you can handle it within 1 hour, so the author of the image above could be you.

Last modified: Friday, 2 February 2007, 4:15 PM