Modern Data Visualization at CDC: Fast, User Tested, and Web Ready by Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Covid and Monkeypox have made it clear, CDC must tell the data story as it unfolds with interactive visualizations that are mobile-friendly, high-traffic ready, user-tested, and accessible. Our objective was to modernize visualizations at CDC to meet these goals without using any specialized application developers or additional licenses.
This project is about visualizing data across the agency as part of CDC’s Digital Communication Modernization and Data Modernization Initiatives. It includes ensuring a unified look across CDC by employing visual design expertise, best practices, and user-tested data and recommendations so that audiences can understand the agency’s intended messages.
We’ve built tools into CDC’s Web Content Management System using an Open source development model which is also integrated with distributed data pipeline to make data update easier.
There are approximately 30 visualization types currently available, including various charts, tables, and maps. Over 1000 web-ready interactive visualizations are already available on CDC.gov for topics including COVID-19, Monkeypox, drug overdose, vaccination, and more.
These new tools allow staff to go from final data file to web-ready visualization in under half an hour. Since May 2022, there have been over 8 million views of the Monkeypox data visualization pages on CDC.gov.
Credits• Fred Smith; Technology Team Lead • Cesar Rivera; Visual Design Branch Chief • Alex Casanova; Enterprise Systems Team Lead • Palak Patel; Data Visualization Team Lead • Meredith Newlove; Visualization Information Specialist • Mikaelyn Benson; Visualization Information Specialist • Deirdre Launt; Visualization Information Specialist • Brigette Hall; Visualization Information Specialist • Dan Higgins; Visualization Information Specialist • Patrick Brady; Visualization Information Specialist • Kimberley Lyles-Folkman; QAQC • Akiko Wilson; Visual Communication Design Team Lead • Angel Glaude-Hosch; Presentation Design Supervisor • James Archer; Medical + Digital Illustration Supervisor • Stacey Thalken; Health Communications Specialist • William (Bill) Scott; Technical Project Manager (CTR) • Kayla Warren; User Experience Specialist (CTR) • Matthew Pallansch; Senior Developer (CTR) • Adam Doe; Senior Developer (CTR) • Jeff Rainey; Senior Developer (CTR) • Robin Crocker; Business Analyst (CTR) • Song Choi; Graphics Specialist (CTR) • J Serrano; Graphics Specialist (CTR)