Unesco Institute for Statistics

How Much Does Your Country Invest in R&D

Global spending on research and development has reached a record high of almost 1.5 trillion dollars. Media reports are rife with speculation as to when China will outrank the United States in terms of R&D spending and what it will mean politically and economically. But a closer look at the data reveals emerging players, who are ramping up their financial investments and number of researchers. If you look at the data, the top three spenders (relative to GDP) are actually the Republic of Korea, Israel and Japan. 
To make these data available to the public, The UNESCO Institute for Statistics asked FFunction to create an interactive data visualization. 
The interface needed to:
  • function seamlessly across desktop, laptop and tablet
  • have the ability to pull data directly from the UNESCO Institute for Statistics API
  • have a high level of transparency in terms of source code and documentation
  • be available in English, French and Spanish
  • include social media buttons for easy sharing
  • be easily embeddable in third party sites
Most importantly, the interactive had to be engaging enough for the lay-person but sophisticated enough for experts with sensitivity to the framing and accuracy of the data. This point was key, because this interactive has an important role to play in monitoring the new Sustainable Development Goals worldwide.