Accessibility statement

Jill Simpson



PhD – (in progress), University of York
MA - Social Research, University of York
BA Hons – Sociology, Newcastle University 

My ESRC-funded PhD project forms part of an interdisciplinary research network called 'Relating to data through visualisation'. My data studies project explores the meaning-making processes at work in both the design of data visualisations and their interpretation by ‘ordinary users’.

The project is supervised by Professor David Beer and Dr Rosemary Hill.

My research interests combine critical data studies, interdisciplinary social research and public engagement through creative practice.


Selected publications


  • Simpson, J. (Forthcoming). “Visualizing Data: A Lived Experience.” In (Ed.), Kennedy, H., and Engebretsen, M. Data visualization in society. Amsterdam University Press
  • Simpson, J. (2017). ‘Visualising Mental Illness.’ openDemocracy [Online]

Conference presentations: 

  • Simpson, J. (2019). “Imagining Users in Data Visualisation Design.” Data Power. University of Bremen, Germany. 12-13 September 2019.
  • Simpson, J. (2018). 'Ways of Seeing (with) Data.' Responding to Berger: A Workshop. University of York, York. 5 January 2018.
  • Simpson, J. (2017). 'Data art: learning crafty and critical approaches to big data.' Nordic Workshop Series: The Remediation of Education (REED). Textual Innovations as resources for learning. University of Agder, Kristiansand, Norway. 13-14 September 2017.
  • Simpson, J. (2017). 'Curating Sociology: crafty and critical approaches to big data.' Traversing Boundaries: Interdisciplinary Social Research Postgraduate Conference. University of York, York. 25 May 2017.

Public engagement:

  • Invited Speaker: “Visualising Mental Illness.” Materializing Mental Health Class, Design School of Carnegie Mellon University, September.
  • Invited Speaker: “Thinking Critically about Data Presentation. Case study: Dear Data.” York College. April.
  • Winner of the Spotlight competition, a PhD research showcase at the University of York, January 2018.



  • 2018 GTA Seminar leader, Department of Sociology, University of York.
    Social Theory (first-year undergraduate module)


  • Jan 2020 - Associate lecturer, Department of Sociology, University of York (P/T, 0.5)
    Principally teaching and supervising dissertations on the Social Media and Management MA programme.
  • 2018 and 2019 Guest Lecturer, Department of Sociology, University of York.
    Advanced Qualitative Methods (MA taught module)

Contact details

Ms Jill Simpson
PhD Student
Department of Sociology
University of York
North Yorkshire
YO10 5DD