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Nicole Hengesbach


Hello! I am a final year PhD student at the CDT Urban Science.

My research engages with urban data through critical perspectives and practices, with a special focus on how urban data are represented in data visualisation. This is of special relevance for contexts at the intersection of the civic culture and where data analysis and data visualisation increasingly inform decision-making, foster knowledge building, engagement, awareness, literacy and citizens’ agency.

While mostly lying at the intersection of data studies and data visualisation, my research draws from technical, technologically orientated disciplines, in concert with concepts and approaches from geography, philosophy and humanities. This interdisciplinary approach promises to obtain new perspectives that open up conventional concepts and ideas, and address the contemporary challenges deriving from data practices.

My PhD research is supervised by Greg McInernyLink opens in a new window and João Porto de AlbuquerqueLink opens in a new window.


Before beginning my PhD with WISC, I did an MA in Urban FuturesLink opens in a new window from the University of Applied Sciences Potsdam. During my studies there I put emphasis on engaging with urban data and data visualisation. As part of my Master's I spend some time as a visiting student at the Centre for Interdisciplinary MethodologiesLink opens in a new window at the University of Warwick. I was taking modules within the MSc Urban Analytics and Visualisation programme as well as working on a meta-analysis that investigates the potential of data visualisation in terms of public participation and engagement.

I did my undergraduate studies in Dutch-German Studies at the University of Münster. This included a year of studying at the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, where I studied social urban history as well as media and communication.


2019/2020 Sessional Tutor for IM921Link opens in a new window


Hengesbach, N. (2022). Undoing Seamlessness: Exploring Seams for Critical Visualization. CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems Extended Abstracts, 2022, New Orleans, LA, USA. Available here.

Hengesbach, N. (2019). Ways of Seeing Urban Data. Critical Visualization and the Limits of Air Quality Data. Workshop Paper at CityVis: 2nd Workshop on Urban Data Visualization. IEEE VIS Conference, Vancouver. Available here.


Maps, trees and missingness: Representing data limitations in critical visualisation. WPCCS 2021 - 19th Warwick Postgraduate Colloquium in Computer Science, December 2021. Details here.

What would a critical visualisation look like? Exploring pluralism to surface limitations in urban data. Information+ Conference 2021, September 2021. Pre-recorded presentation here, slides available here.

From Limitations to Qualities in Critical Urban Data Visualisation. WPCCS 2020 - 18th Warwick Postgraduate Colloquium in Computer Science, December 2020. Details here.

Visualising the Limitations of Air Quality Sensor Data. WPCCS 2019 - 17th Warwick Postgraduate Colloquium in Computer Science, December 2019. Details here.

Moving Beyond Data Assemblages to Understand Air Quality Sensor Data. Beyond Smart Cities Today, Rotterdam, September 2019. Details hereLink opens in a new window.

Photo Nicole Hengesbach


N dot Hengesbach at warwick dot ac dot uk

Room 4.18
Mathematical Sciences Building
University of Warwick