Population forecasts by UN

Cole at storytellingwithdata is running a redesign contest for this article in the Economist. The article describes global population forecasts by UN. I found the data really interesting and decided to try my hand at a redesign!

Some things that I followed:

  • The source data is huge – it has population forecasts based on fertility rates, split by gender and a whole lot of other interesting details to drill into. I decided to stick with the data that the Economist article is using – for the redesign contest, but also to keep the scope of the visualization limited. Ideally, I would love to visualize population density along with just absolute population.
  • The redesign aims to tell a very similar story as the Economist article – the predicted rise in population of Africa, decline in the population in Europe, and the trends in the most populous countries in the world.
  • Some thoughts behind the redesign:

  • Comparison of % contributions of each region to the total world population in order to show the sharp expected rise in the population in Africa, and decline in Europe.
  • Detailed analysis of the predictions from 2015 to 2050: I used a waterfall in conjunction with a simple area chart. This is intended to quickly visualize just how much the population growth of Africa contributes to the overall growth in this time period. This view also reinforces how the population of Africa is expected to double in this time period, and Europe is the only one which is actually expected to decline.
  • Top 10 countries: To show the dynamic nature of countries in the top 10, I created a line chart and filtered to show only the top 10 countries for each year.
  • All feedback welcome!

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