'Mining for Meaning' - Word Relation Study

My PhD explores what the possible role of Big Data is in design for the built environment aimed at citizen participation. In the current Big Data discourse the most commonly cited examples address data analytics used for business successes such as Amazon, Google or Wal-Mart. What Big Data champions however tend to disregard is the fact that these business examples always have a very clear question when analysing the data: how correlations can beneficially influence their sales. The use of Big Data for revenue purposes is clear, but what is the goal of data mining in other fields? What are we are looking for in data on the public realm? And could this data help us design more participatory places or processes?

For the Royal College of Art's Work in Progress (WIP) Show of 2015 I produced and exhibited the following diagrams.

The diagrams at the top show the number of Google hits when searching for different words related to these contexts combined with ‘Big Data’ or ‘data mining’. And the two large infographics show (by size) which words are most frequently correlated in the Google search results for each of these queries.


Diagrams by Saba Golchehr ©