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The overall goals of the new Commission on Cognitive Issues in Geographic Information Visualization (CogVis)
from 2011-2015 will be to:

  • promote the awareness of cognitive issues in cartography, developing human-centered cartographic theory and practice based on sound empirical findings on the use of cartographic displays for spatio-temporal inference and decision-making.
  • define short and medium term research goals that address key issues associated with building a sound theoretical base to support the construction and use of cognitively adequate and perceptually salient visual displays of geographic information.

Specific envisioned research foci will include (but are not limited to):

  • empirical geovisualization design research (2-3D, static, animated and interactive, virtual and immersive, mobile, etc.)
  • the application of cognitive theories and methods to understanding visuo-spatial displays and tool use for inference and decision-making (including mental maps, space-time behavior, navigation, etc.)
  • the application of visuo-spatial displays and tools to understanding spatial cognition
  • spatial reasoning, inference and decision making with visuo-spatial displays and tools
  • cognitive principles supporting human-visualization interaction research
  • Encourage interdisciplinary and international collaboration with cognate disciplines and relevant stakeholders, including other ICA commissions and working groups.


  • Organize sessions at the 2013 and 2015 ICC Conferences that focus on cognitive processes associated with using maps and interactive geovisual analytical systems.
  • Organize annual meetings of the commission, in conjunction with the ICC and other relevant conferences, with an attempt to co-locate commission meetings with those put on by the Geovisualization, Use and User Issues and Map Design commissions to facilitate interaction and knowledge sharing with these other commissions.
  • Disseminate the findings of our annual meetings through an up-to-date Commission website, and peer-reviewed scholarly outlets such as, edited books, collection of high quality articles in special issues of journals, etc. at least every second year.
  • Proactively seek out the involvement of and recruit young researchers interested in the Commission's work by including opportunities for training at our annual events (e.g., workshops on eye-tracking, experimental methods, neuroimaging, etc).
  • Maintain a website for electronic dissemination of research on Commission-relevant issues
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