Lyn Bartram

Professor Emerita, Associate Member - Computing Science

Teaching & research interests

  • Data Visualization
  • Visual analytics
  • Human-computer interaction
  • Affective interfaces
  • Information design for sustainability
  • Interactive buildings
  • Data media and practice

Lyn's biography

Lyn Bartram is a Professor Emerita in the School of Interactive Art and Technology at SFU and Director of  the Vancouver Institute of Visual Analytics, an SFU Research Institute engaging researchers, practitioners and organizations with challenges and opportunities in the emerging universe of big data. Her work explores  the  intersecting potential of interactive technologies, visual analytics and computational media from both theoretical and applied perspectives, particularly to better support data-enabled thinking beyond the traditional applications of expert data science. On the theoretical foundations aspect,she and her students study how we can leverage the capabilities of human perception, cognition, affect and behaviour to reduce the overhead of using information systems. This underpins applied work into the democratization of data visualization, and how interactive visual analytics can more effectively enhance and extend peoples' data practices. She is especially interested in personal visual analytics.  She works in both standard and practice-based research methods in applications related to data visualization, personal visual analytics, computational sustainability, and computational aesthetics.

A computer scientist by training, she engages extensively with data practitioners at all levels of competence and discipline through her work as Director of VIVA, the Vancouver Institute of Visual Analytics. VIVA is an interdisciplinary university  institute with the mandate to educate, foster research collaboration and enhance literacy around  data-driven thinking, visual analytics and exploratory data analysis. Our audiences and collaborators are both internal to the university and the external  community, spanning a wide scope of disciplines, domains (e.g. health, finance, governance, research, scientists and entrepreneurs) and levels of expertise.  As Director she leads initiatives in training; outreach to community groups, content development of courses and project proposals; advising to other agencies and departments in the university around integration of new data methods; data analysis; and production of outreach strategies and materials for internal and external audiences.


  • BA, Political Science, University of British Columbia
  • M.Math, Computer Science, University of Waterloo
  • PhD, Computing Science, Simon Fraser University

Current & upcoming courses

This instructor is currently not teaching any courses.