Interactive data visualizations for a better world

Unesco, part of the United Nations, wants to fight poverty and promote peace, sustainable development and dialogue.

Also by conducting research and collecting and publishing data. This is now possible interactively, responsively and from a ‘single source of truth’.

Unesco supports education, science, culture and communication worldwide. They are perhaps best known from the Unesco World Heritage List, featuring the Dutch Water Line, the windmills of Kinderdijk, the Van Nellefarbiek in Rotterdam or the port of Willemstad on Curaçao.

Lots of data

Unesco manages much more data and information. And with that question Unesco came to Ability and our partner Smartshore: how can Unesco manage that data smartly and offer it interactively to users of unesco.org.

Preserve what works

From the start of the collaboration between Unesco, Ability and Smartshore, it was clear that a solution was needed within the existing Unesco platform. Unesco.org, a digital platform based on the open source content management system Drupal, functions well.

Unesco also works with a strong design system that has been developed for the platform. Drupal was just not suitable for managing the data.

User testing

Because we design for people, we have also done a user analysis for Unesco. This time it was also very valuable to map out the experience and wishes of the Unesco employees who manage the data.

Data portal

Based on Unesco’s existing design system, we have designed various templates and data visualizations that can be displayed within the existing Drupal platform.

For managing the data – and for displaying the data within the existing platform – Ability partner Smartshore and Unesco opted for Strapi, a modern content management system that is particularly suitable for processing data from various sources using APIs.

Unesco manages the data in a custom Strapi environment. A visitor to the ‘old’ Drupal platform will not notice this and will automatically see the correct data from Strapi.