Home / Event / Training Workshop: Mapping Information, Ideas and Arguments with Visual Sensemaking Tools

Training Workshop: Mapping Information, Ideas and Arguments with Visual Sensemaking Tools

Date: Friday, 19th May 2017
Time: 09:00 AM
Location: CIC Ideation Studio

In recent years, UTS staff from diverse faculties and business units have expressed interest in information mapping schemes and tools. At this full-day workshop, speakers Paul Culmsee, Kailash Awati and Simon Buckingham-Shum described a scheme for mapping information, issues and arguments, and introduced a visual hypertext tool (Compendium), which has been in research and development for over 20 years.

Date & Time: Friday 19 May, 9:00am – 5:00pm

The speakers:

  • Paul Culmsee, an IT veteran of 25 years, a sensemaker, author and Director of Seven Sigma Business Solutions.
  • Kailash Awati, a Senior Lecturer at the UTS Connected Intelligence Centre, teaching in the Master of Data Science and Innovation program.
  • Simon Buckingham-Shum, Professor of Learning Informatics and Director of the UTS Connected Intelligence Centre.

Attendees left the workshop with:

  • Hands-on experience with IBIS (Issue-Based Information System) — a deceptively simple scheme for capturing personal analysis/reflections and collective deliberation, and the mapping of complex information spaces.
  • Hands-on experience with Compendium, a software tool designed to support hypertextual mapping of multi-perspective information spaces and IBIS.
  • Knowledge of case studies that show Compendium’s full capabilities.


9am — Coffee and Compendium technical clinic

9:45am — Welcome and introductions

10:00am — What’s the problem?

10:30am — Does this ring true?

10:45 — Introducing IBIS

11:15am — BREAK

11:30am — Hands-on IBIS (pen and paper flip chart activity)

12:00pm — Hands on Compendium: the basics

12:30pm — LUNCH 

1:30pm — Case studies

2:00pm — Hands on Compendium: tags, embedding, exporting to Word

3:00pm — Map typles and powerful questions

3:30pm — BREAK

3:45pm — Bringing it all together: Map this dialogue

4:15pm — An end-to-end case study

4:40pm — Wrap up discussions

5:00pm — Workshop concludes


Paul Culmsee is an IT veteran of 25 years, sensemaker, author and the director of Seven Sigma Business Solutions. Based in Perth, Western Australia, he specialises in sensemaking, helping organisations (re)discover their purpose, knowledge management, strategic planning, IT governance, facilitation and all facets of SharePoint delivery.  (He also has various nerdy certifications so can also mix it with the tech side of things…) Paul is one of four certified Dialogue Mappers worldwide. Dialogue Mapping is a sensemaking craft originally developed by Jeff Conklin of Cognexus Institute. Dialogue Mapping is a radically inclusive technique to help groups deal with wicked problems. With Kailash Awati, Paul is the author of The Heretics Guide to Best Practices: The Reality of Managing Complex Problems in Organisations (which in the context of this workshop, describes the use of Compendium for sensemaking). It won an Axiom Business book award in the area of Lean/Operations Management and Continuous Improvement and was a finalist in the Foreword Business Book of the Year. Paul has also published peer reviewed works and was a contributing author to Knowledge Cartography: Software Tools and Mapping Techniques.

Kailash Awati is Senior Lecturer at the Connected Intelligence Centre, UTS where he teaches into the Master of Data Science and Innovation program. He is also co-founder and principal of Sensanalytics, a consultancy specializing in sensemaking and analytics.  His current professional interests include the application of data science to business problems and the use of sensemaking techniques to improve decision making in organisations.   He is co-author (with Paul Culmsee) of a couple of books on sensemaking, and has written a number of peer-reviewed papers in areas ranging from project management to physics. Kailash blogs at Eight to Late where he writes about a wide variety of topics relating to data and decision-making.

Simon Buckingham Shum is Professor of Learning Informatics at the University of Technology Sydney, which he joined in August 2014 to direct the new Connected Intelligence Centre. He brings a Human-Centred Informatics (HCI) approach to the broad challenge of making thinking visible in order to “augment human intellect for complex problems” (to cite one of his inspirations, Doug Engelbart)This work is distilled in Visualizing Argumentation (2003), Knowledge Cartography (2008, 2nd Edn. 2014), and Constructing Knowledge Art (2015). As part of this work he co-founded the Compendium Institute (1999-2014) to build the capacity of the community using Compendium, the visual hypertext tool that his research team developed and released open source, building on and extending the groundbreaking work by their collaborators in the U.S.: Al SelvinMaarten Sierhuis and Jeff Conklin. He brings a background in Psychology (BSc, York), Ergonomics (MSc, London) and Human-Computer Interaction (PhD, York).

Install Compendium

Attendees will need to install Compendium.

Thank you for your interest in this event. We look forward to seeing you at the workshop!