Direct link to video on YouTube: https://youtu.be/UDfr73S95YU
It has been widely suggested that a key goal of visualization systems is to assist decision making, but is this true? We conduct a critical investigation on whether the activity of decision making is indeed central to the visualization domain. By approaching decision making as a user task, we explore the degree to which decision tasks are evident in visualization research and user studies. Our analysis suggests that decision tasks are not commonly found in current visualization task taxonomies and that the visualization field has yet to leverage guidance from decision theory domains on how to study such tasks. We further found that the majority of visualizations addressing decision making were not evaluated based on their ability to assist decision tasks. Finally, to help expand the impact of visual analytics in organizational as well as casual decision making activities, we initiate a research agenda on how decision making assistance could be elevated throughout visualization research.