The short version is I’m a researcher at the Brown Institute for Media Innovation at Columbia University.

I work at the intersection of data, GIS, visualization, journalism, architecture, urbanism, and the humanities, and I teach graduate level workshops and seminars on mapping, advanced GIS and data visualization. In the past I’ve worked as a research scholar at the Center for Spatial Research and the Spatial Information Design Lab, as an architectural designer for Carlos Zapata Studio and D.G.T. Architects, and as the GIS project coordinator for the Catholic Charities of New York.

Here’s a more detailed version:


  • Masters in Architecture, Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation, Columbia University in the City of New York, 2012.
  • Masters of Science in Urban Planning, Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation, Columbia University in the City of New York, 2009.
  • Bachelors of Arts in Philosophy, Department of Philosophy, Universidad de Los Andes, 2004.







  • Mapping Data Flows, a visual exploration of the types of data collected by Amazon, Apple, Facebook, and Google, and what they use it for. Battelle, J., Saldarriaga, J., Martin, Z., Albasi, M., Bhuta, N., Penney, V., 2018 - 2019.
  • Counting and Mapping Police Killings, a statistical and mapping investigation into extra- judicial killings in the Philippines, Coronel, S., Ball, P., Saldarriaga, J., Security Forces Monitor, 2018 - 2019.
  • Conflict Urbanism: Infrapolitics, a spatial investigation into the politics and social acts behind infrastructure in three global-south cities, Mumbai, Johannesburg, and Medellín. Kurgan, L., Rao, A., Saldarriaga J., McSweeney, M., 2017 - 2018.
  • Conflict Urbanism: Colombia, an interactive mapping and spatial analysis project examining the Colombian conflict and its effect in the urban environment. Kurgan, L., Saldarriaga, J., Rettberg, A., 2015 - 2017.
  • Mapping Mughal Hindustan, 1500 - 1600 CE, a scholarly and interactive mapping project which re-frames the various sites of early Mughal Hindustan as affective geography. Ahmed, M., Saldarriaga, J., Devulapalli, S., Fattaleh, N., Sá Pereira, M., in progress.
  • How We Die, a dynamic topographical installation that visualizes the leading causes of death in New York City between 2007 and 2013. Saldarriaga J., Sanchez, S., 2018.
  • Locations of Justice, an interactive mapping project documenting the reach and locations of the institutions and agencies involved in New York City’s criminal justice system. Kurgan, L., Saldarriaga, J., Hartman, J., Architectural League, Urban Omnibus, 2017.
  • The Haven Project, an interactive data visualization project analyzing health and environmental metrics for New York City. Kurgan, L., Saldarriaga, J., Izen, J., New York Restoration Project, 2015.
  • Science Surveyor - Context on Deadline, an interactive application providing context information for science journalists on a deadline, Holloway, M., Tenen, D., Kurgan, L., Jurafsky, D., McFarland, D., Saldarriaga, J., Basic, G, 2014 - 2015.
  • Citibike Station Imbalances & Citibike Rides, data visualization and mapping projects studying Citibike usage, activity data and station imbalances, Saldarriaga, J., King, D., Kaufman, S., Ferzoco, J., 2014.
  • Port to Port, an interactive data visualization and mapping analysis of 6 years of oil shipment routes to and from U.S. ports, Kurgan, L., Saldarriaga, J., Berner, A., Murray., S., 2014.
  • NYC Taxi Activity, data visualization animations illustrating movement and imbalance patterns in New York City taxicabs, Saldarriaga, J., King, D., Peters, J., 2012.
  • Here Now! Social Media And The Psychological City, data visualization and mapping project studying social media check-ins in New York City. Williams, S., Saldarriaga, J., Bullen, G., Tan, F., Youse, N., 2011.



  • Mapping Data Flows, data presentation for the AI and Data Governance panel at the Global Solutions Summit 2020.
  • Mobility + Spatial Agency: Autonomy in the New Urban Interface, AIA New York, New York, 2019.
  • Spatial Data Analysis and Visualization, lecture for the Housing Studio masters course at The City University of New York, New York, 2018.
  • Research Through Visualization, lecture for the Strategic Communications masters course at The City University of New York, New York, 2018.
  • Visualizing the conflict: Maps, animation and experimental methods, lecture sponsored by the Masters in Peacebuilding at the Universidad de Los Andes, Bogotá, Colombia, 2017.
  • Conflict Urbanism, lecture for the Inaugural Programming “Foundations of the Digital, Foundations in the Humanities: Race, Gender, Class” lecture series at Studio Chi, DePaul University, Chicago, 2017.
  • Research Through Visualization, lecture for the Research Methods course at the Masters of Science of Architecture at Penn State University, State College, PA, 2017.
  • Visualizing New York’s Citibikes: Imbalances, Social Justice Issues And Its Interaction With Other Modes of Transportation, lecture for the International Workshop in Data Analytics and Visualization in Transport, IFSTTAR, Paris, France, 2014.
  • The Uncertainties of Data, lecture for the City As Resource Lecture Series, Zürcher Hochschule der Künste, Zürich, Switzerland, 2014.


  • Conflict Urbanism: Colombia - The Memory of a Conflict Through a Single Dataset, presented at the Visualization and the Holocaust conference, Nasher Museum of Art at Duke University, Durham, North Carolina, 2019.
  • Mapping and Data Analysis of Forced Displacement, presentation at the Build Peace conference, Bogotá, Colombia, 2017.
  • Conflict Urbanism: Colombia & Aleppo, presented at the NACIS Annual Conference, Montreal, Canada, 2017.
  • Conflict Urbanism: Colombia, demoed at the Tapestry conference, St. Augustine, FL, 2017.
  • Environmental Costs of Spatial Regulation of Taxicabs, presented at the Second Annual Symposium on Transportation Informatics, Arlington, Virginia, 2016.
  • Access to Taxicabs for Unbanked Households: An Exploratory Analysis in New York City, presented at the ACSP 2016 56th Annual Conference, Portland, Oregon, 2016.
  • Environmental Costs of Spatial Regulation of Taxicabs, presented at the NACIS Annual Conference, Colorado Springs, Colorado, 2016.
  • Access to Taxicabs for Unbanked Households: An Exploratory Analysis in New York City, presented at Bloomberg’s Data for Good Exchange conference, New York, New York, 2016.
  • Modeling Social Justice Issues in Urban Zones Using Big Data: Evidence from Bikeshare and Taxicab Data, presented at the Workshop on Big Data And Urban Informatics, University of Illinois at Chicago, Illinois, 2014.



  • Introduction to Computational Journalism, an introductory five-day workshop on tools, methods, and concepts such as programming, reproducible research, web-scraping, and APIs, for professional journalists from the European Broadcasting Union (Summer 2019).
  • Points Unknown: New Frameworks for Investigation and Creative Expression Through Mapping, four and five week workshops and full semester graduate course combining mapping, narrative and storytelling for the School of Journalism and the Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation (Fall 2017, Spring 2018, Fall 2018, Spring 2019, Fall 2019, Spring 2020).
  • Data Visualization for Architecture, Urbanism and the Humanities, an introduction to data visualization theory and methods for students new to the fields of computation and information design. Interdisciplinary, undergraduate and graduate levels (Spring 2017, Spring 2018).
  • Mapping for Architecture, Urbanism and the Humanities, an introductory mapping course combining methods and topics for architecture, urbanism and the humanities. Interdisciplinary, undergraduate and graduate levels (Spring 2016, Fall 2016).
  • Advanced Geographic Information Systems, an urban planning graduate seminar in advanced techniques and methods in geographic information systems (Spring 2014, Spring 2015, Fall 2015).
  • Open Cartographies, an architecture graduate course exploring new techniques in mapping, web- mapping and data visualization (Fall 2014).
  • Geographic Information Systems, a GIS course for the Epidemiology and Population Health Summer Institute (Summer 2015).




  • Puerto Rico Mapathon, a collaborative workshop to improve geographic data of Puerto Rico in wake of hurricane Maria. Organized along with the Group for Experimental Methods in the Humanities. Covered by the New York Times, The Atlantic CityLab, PBS and Wired, 2017.
  • Citibike Citibike Rebalancing Study, featured in The Washington Post and StreetsBlog NYC, 2014.
  • Rides, a video animation of 48 hours of Citibike rides. Featured in The New York Times and Fast Company Co.Design, 2014.
  • New York City Taxi Activity, a visualization of origins and destinations of yellow cabs in New York City. Featured in The Atlantic CityLab, 2012.
  • Here Now! Social Media and the Psychological City, featured in ArchDaily, 2012.
  • Taxi! A video animation of taxi rides around New York City. Featured in The Atlantic CityLab and FlowingData, 2012.


  • Proficiency in GIS (ArcGIS and QGIS), Postgresql (including PostGIS), Webmapping (including Leaflet, Carto, Mapbox, Tangram), Rhinoceros (including Grasshopper), 3DS Max, Maya, AutoCAD, Adobe Creative Suite, Python (including Pandas and Numpy), Javascript, Processing, Arduino, d3.js, p5.js, HTML, CSS, Git, SPSS, and MS Office.


  • English (fluent), Spanish (native), French (fluent), Modern Greek (Basic)

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