Illustration for research proposals
Visualization of research methods, key concepts and theoretical models often makes much more clear than is possible with text only. Moreover, good illustrations showcase the core and unique selling points of a proposal and contribute to a positive attitude of the reviewers and committee members. You never get to make a first impression twice. Especially when writing a research proposal for NWO or ERC these are reasons to take illustrations seriously.
The main focus of Visser Visible Communication is the trajectory between the invitation for a grant interview and the interview itself. After requests of clients we previously helped with the preparations for their interviews, we also started to work on illustrations for thair research proposals. Sometimes we restrict ourselves to polish up existing illustrations. However, we usually are approached in a prior stage of the writing process. We read the draft proposal and we brainstorm about possible illustrations. Then we sketch different versions of these images on paper until we arrive at a set of illustrations. We draw the illustrations in a style that suits the author and the subject of the proposal and keep on editing them during the trajectory of comments of peers and development of the proposal.
Because of our years of experience in academia and working with scientists, we can contribute to the writing process from understanding of the contents of a proposal. If we do not understand a concept, we also cannot visualise it. And if we do not understand it, most likely committee members (that often are from other academic disciplines then the candidate) will also not get it. It often happens that our clients rewrite parts of their proposals, because they discover they were not clear enough. The responses on texts and illustrations of critical proof readers result in further refining of the proposal. In this iterative process every next version is a next step towards perfection.