Learning from Vernon’s Isotype test
A design history footnote
This paper goes back to the 1970s, the decade when IDJ was born, to recall a collaboration with Marie Neurath of the Isotype Institute. The project challenged a widely published research project on Isotype charts by psychologist Magdalen Vernon, and the original sketches and design drafts are used to make observations about Isotype, design expertise and design research.
- 1.The Vernon ‘Isotype’ chart
- 2.Background to our intervention
- 3.Marie Neurath’s transformation
- 4.Reflections on transformation skills and processes
- 4.1Persistence of the original arrangement of data
- 4.2Active white space, and its role in raising questions
- 4.3Column order and topic
- 4.4The key role of the title
- 4.5Using an available repertoire of solutions
- 4.6The importance of skillful execution and visual judgement
Published online: 22 October 2020
Alexander, C., Ishikawa, S., Silverstein, M., Jacobson, M., Fiksdahl-King, I., & Angel, S.
Behavioural Insights Team
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