Motivation – To introduce the audience to visual analytics and its relevance to cognitive and decision sciences by stimulating dialog on the current state of visual analytics research, unresolved challenges and future directions. Research approach –Current research will be presented and demonstrated in the areas of public health and safety. Findings/Design – The panelists will introduce the audience to visual analytics, its relationship to the digital information explosion, and promote discussions on challenges faced by visual analytics relative to NDM methodologies. Research limitations/Implications – Visual analytics is still an emerging science that is continuing to evolve. The implication of visual analytics is a new approach to analyzing large dynamic heterogeneous information spaces resulting in faster and better decisions. Originality/Value – Visual analytics represents a new science to support analytical decision making. Take away message – The expanding digital universe is confounding many analysis tasks with vast amounts of diverse information. Visual analytics is an emerging science to address these challenges through supporting an interactive, human-driven decision making process.