Data visualisation blogs are a dime-a-dozen, and few of them provide consistently good infographics or charts that are actually of use to professionals in business or risk management.
But don’t despair: there are still good sources out there. You just have to know where to look.
Here at Polecat we produce, share and rely on data visualisations to communicate our insights about risk. We know what good visualisations look like – and we know they’re hard to find – so we’ve rounded up the most reputable sources of high-quality infographics and visualisations here for your use.
Have a look, and let us know if you have any suggestions for the list.
- Infosthetics. Information Aesthetics is a leader among data visualisation blogs. Since 2004 it has curated visualisation projects that present data and information in original ways. Content ranges from the quirky (see these data-driven descriptions of popular films) to the more business-focussed, like this animated organisation chart.
- Eagereyes. Robert Kosara has been writing Eagereyes, a thoughtful ‘blog’ about data visualisation, for ten years. Content ranges from general interest data journalism and the fundamentals of data to more practical topics, like visualisation techniques and how to scrape an HTML table.
- Flowing Data. This blog is much more than a repository of interesting infographics. It posts about data-driven visualisation projects, maps, infographics and statistics. Highlights include this interactive map of global shipping routes and this searchable map of regional news stories.
- The Why Axis. Bryan Connor writes lengthy, thoughtful critiques of data visualisation projects and tools. Though it’s been awhile since a new post has appeared on The Why Axis, it’s still a good source of information on large-scale visualisation projects, like The Landscape of Climate Finance.
- Cool Infographics. The name says it all. Randy Krum loves engaging, data-rich infographics, and he posts the best ones here. Professionals will love posts such as Visualising the Fortune 500 or this one about finding your ideal workplace.
- Visualising Data. This UK-based blog rounds up the best visualisations and infographics on the web, and also features discussions about visualisation trends and resources for making your own graphics.
- Pew Internet. A collection of charts and graphics produced by the Pew Research Centre. The centre’s research focuses on the social impact of digital technologies, and the visualisations featured on this blog showcase interesting insights about social media conversations and content consumption, among other topics.
- Michael Sandberg’s Data Visualization Blog. Michael Sandberg wants to get people excited about data, and he’s doing it ‘one visual at a time.’ Professionals and risk managers will enjoy infographics like this one about trends in the US workforce and this timeline of the history of analytics.
- Visual Complexity. This website showcases stunning graphics and visualisations that present complex datasets from a range of industries. There a few odd entries (tagged and visualised song favourites, anyone?) but others are genuinely interesting – and useful – for risk management professionals. Take this map of Twitter topic networks, this interactive map of reddit topic networks, or this map of complaints about the Madrid subway.
- Excel Charts. This blog is a trove of helpful information about visualisation best practices, tools and tutorials. Topics range from general interest and visual perception to displaying change over time, plotting distributions and how to build dashboards in Excel.
- Evergreen Data. Stephanie Evergreen helps her clients communicate effectively with a research-based approach to visualisation and design. Her blog contains a wealth of information about everything from how to make a lollipop graph in Excel to how to make reports more engaging.
- Washington Post Information Graphics. Showcasing some of the best examples of data journalism, Postgraphics is where you’ll find infographics, visualisations and visual snippets produced by The Washington Post. Content is usually related to recent news and current affairs, covering everything from the US Presidential Election to extreme weather events and the Blue Origin space craft.
- The Guardian. This page is home to data visualisations produced or shared by the team at The Guardian. Highlights include this map showing the height and density of England’s buildings.
- Graphic Detail. A visualisation blog run by The Economist that features a new chart, map or infographic every working day. This is a great resource for newsworthy visualisations, mostly covering politics and economics. Recent favourites of ours include this graph showing the average trading volume of the Yuan and these charts showing the rise of far-right parties in Europe.
- Perceptual Edge. This blog is written by Stephen Few, a leading expert in data visualisation and business intelligence. You won’t find many glittering charts or rich infographics here, but you will find a decade’s worth of well-written and thought provoking articles about statistics, analytics and ‘data viz’ tools.
- Visual Loop. A collection of over 3500 infographics and visualisations, some of which are interactive – like this EU unemployment tracker. Content covers everything from business and politics to history and anatomy.
- Visualizing Economics. This is the blog of Catherine Mulbrandon, a UX designer with ten years of experience in the finance industry. Mulbrandon takes complex economic and financial data and creates engaging charts and graphics on topics like housing prices and stock market volatility.
- Spatial.ly. Dr. James Chesire is a geographer with a penchant for mapping data. This blog is where he publishes some of his work, musings about data mapping, and the occasional tutorial.
- FTData. This website is the combined effort from individuals across the FT network specialising in data journalism and statistics. Subject matter varies between current affairs to finance, however the focus is on looking at ‘statistical issues in depth’ and providing ‘original analysis of data.’
- Wolfram Blog. Strictly speaking, this is not a data visualisation blog. But Wolfram Blog does feature a good section on data visualisation, with posts covering topics like computational thinking, applied statistics and visualisation best practices.
- Storytelling with Data. The author of this blog wants to ‘rid the world of ineffective graphs’ and does so through thoughtful critiques of data visualisations and helpful tutorials.
- The datapine blog. Described as a source for ‘news, insights and advice for getting your data in shape’, this blog is ideal for anyone looking for information about dashboarding best practices, measuring KPIs and data-driven business intelligence.
- Ann’s Blog. Ann Emery is a data visualisation specialist. Her blog is an excellent resource for Microsoft Excel tutorials and practical advice about how to create compelling charts and graphics.
- The Data Blog. In support of the World Bank’s open data initiative, this blog is dedicated to sharing charts and visualisations that highlight global development issues. In addition, it’s a particularly good resource for data on development, economics and demographics.
- Information is Beautiful. This list would be incomplete without David McCandless’s famous website. The featured infographics aren’t usually business focussed, but they are beautiful. And some – like this regularly updated interactive chart showing global data breaches – are genuinely useful for risk managers.
Know of any other data visualisation blogs?
Have we missed any? Comment below and let us know where you go to find and share the best data visualisations and infographics. And if you’re feeling inspired we can show you how to create good visualisations that actually engage executives too.