Data visualisation is a powerful and effective way to communicate and present statistics in an interactive and graphical manner. It enables users to explore data, by emphasising the context of the data and allowing the creation of stories that are potentially more engaging to a broader audience than tables of data alone.
The Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) is one of many National Statistical Organisations (NSO) that have been researching and developing different tools and techniques to present their data in a more attractive and understandable format.
A popular data visualisation on the ABS website is the Australian Population Pyramid. It is an animated pyramid graph showing the change of population distribution over time, by age and sex. It sources data from the Australian Demographic Statistics and Population Projections, Australia, 2006 to 2101 publications.
House Price Indexes: Eight Capital Cities is another example of an existing data visualisation produced by the ABS. It uses Google motion charts to demonstrate comparison of median house prices amongst states and territories using the House Price Index data.
ABS is now examining how it can further enhance its data visualisation capability and is investigating options for developing templates that will be dynamically updated as new statistics are released. It will also continue to use its betaworks platform to showcase, test and seek feedback on data visualisation prototypes. Visit the ABS website for more information on how you can interact with ABS data.
Policy Visualisation Network
The ABS is part of an Australian Government led initiative called the Policy Visualisation Network. The purpose of the Policy Visualisation Network is to bring policy makers and designers together to explore how the Australian Public Service (APS) can better use visualisation techniques to provide more informed policy analysis, advice and/or engagement. The Network was established in early 2012 to assist the APS to identify and share appropriate skills and techniques across all the policy visualisation domains.