Blog post: Making data engaging through playful reflection

Hey, wanna do something really cool?

Why not go to the Office for National Statistics site to guess at the rate of quarterly economic growth, as measured by gross domestic product (GDP)?


Well, it is cool I think. It’s just painfully buried beneath the ONS style guide which seems to adhere to William Farr’s take that

“Statistics should be the dryest of all reading.”

Which is a shame because when you try out the interactive charts they’re really, very good. Asking the user to guess how things like inflation, unemployment, and GDP have changed in the months post Brexit really touches on a few things that give this content the potential to have an impact. It challenges, is personal, allows kudos/ self-depreciation and so makes people want to explore and share.

A little window dressing would have gone a long way here which I’m guessing ONS already know hence the ability to embed the activities so that hopefully someone else with fewer restrictions on style can do it for them.



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