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No More Ugly Data

Designing analytics user interfaces for government decision-makers


Government leaders are getting serious about making sense of their data.  Constant advances in graphic, mobile and Web technology make it possible to translate “big data” into meaningful, impactful and visual interfaces.  Using visualization tools to present advanced analytics can help policy makers more easily understand a topic, create an instant connection to unseen layers of data, and provide a sense of scale in dealing with large, complex data sets.

In the article “No more ugly data,” published in the February 2012 edition of Public CIO, David Steier, Joe Leinbach and Anesa Diaz-Uda of Deloitte Consulting LLP, and William Eggers of Deloitte Research discuss how agencies should consider a more user-centric and outcome-centric approach to analytics design to visualize policy problems and guide executives toward better, faster and more informed decisions.  The authors provide several examples of how simple, engaging interfaces can stimulate action and facilitate better decision making.

By following the simple design principals outlined in this article, public organizations and their private and nonprofit partners can create interfaces that help people get the information they need, when they need it to make smarter, faster decisions.

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