Dan Roam was one of the key note speakers at the annual IFVP-conference (International Forum for Visual Practitioners) in August. The conference was held in San Francisco, the place-to-be for a visual practitioner. (Back in the seventies Bay Area was the breeding ground for the emerging Graphic Facilitation field and has been the home for a number of Graphic Facilitators ever since. Check for example The Grove out which is one the the pioneers).
Dan Roam is not a graphic facilitator as such. But he is a visual thinker and with his book “The Back of the Napkin” he showed the world how simple stick figures could convey very complex problems. His key note speak at the conference told the story of his visual explanation about the american health care system that in a short time made it all the way to the White House. (Check it out, its great!)
The visual practice is growing and has an important place in the world, Dan Roam argued. If we are able to create overview in complex systems and issues, we will be able to make much better decisions in the future. If you take a closer look at the graphic recording above, you will see that the most important role for the visual practitioners is to address and reduce complexity and uncertainty and add value to the conflicts of the world.