Charting New Horizons: Amanda Makulec on Leadership, Community, and the Human Touch Behind DataViz image
S10 E257 · The PolicyViz Podcast
Charting New Horizons: Amanda Makulec on Leadership, Community, and the Human Touch Behind DataViz
738 Plays
2 months ago

Amanda Makulec is the current Executive Director of the Data Visualization Society (DVS), and in this week’s episode of the PolicyViz Podcast, we discuss her journey and the DVS’s evolution as it approaches its fifth anniversary. Amanda shares her experience starting as a volunteer all the way to leading the entire organization. With her second term coming to an end, she emphasizes the importance of term limits and her commitment to ensuring the organization’s sustainability by focusing on operational systems, finances, compliance, and community responsiveness.

Topics Discussed

  • Leadership and Evolution of DVS. Amanda discusses her path from volunteering to leading DVS and reflects on the importance of term limits and her dedication to the sustainability of the society.
  • Community Building and Knowledge Sharing. Amanda discusses DVS’s role as a hub for individuals from different tech backgrounds to share insights and best practices and how DVS seeks to create more meaningful community spaces.
  • Data Literacy and Supportive Initiatives. We discuss DVS’s commitment to data literacy and providing a nurturing environment through initiatives like the Outlier conference and the Nightingale magazine.
  • Navigating Social Media and Communication Platforms. As I’ve talked about with other recent guests, we talk about decreased engagement on Twitter/X and limited real-time interaction on LinkedIn. We discuss the balance between online space fragmentation, privacy, and psychological safety, as well as DVS’s use of Slack and potential migration to other platforms such as Discord.
  • Financial Challenges and Operational Sustainability. We talk about the financial constraints of DVS, including the high costs of Slack, and the importance of allocating the budget wisely to support key community and operations management roles.

➡️ Check out more links, notes, transcript, and more at the PolicyViz website.

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