How much water is consumed based on what we're eating, drinking, buying, or based on where we live? Two Harvard Graduate School of Design students, Joseph Bergen and Nickie Huang, set out to show the world in a creative data visualization. The interactive online graphics show visitors how much water they use based on what country they live in or, even better, allows users to see how much water is used to create common consumer beverages and products.
We thought this project and website was pretty cool and so did the website visualizing.org which awarded the two GSD students top honors in their World Water Day Challenge.
In a post on visualizing.org announcing the award, the group says: "The judges all agreed that Bergen and Huang's treatment garnered high marks for being unique, easily accessible, and interactive. They made their visualization useful too, with a playful "LABEL" feature that enables users to generate a water footprint label for any item of choice. As the designers put it: "Label your lunch, your drink, your friends, yourself, even the whole world with its water footprint!" If one goal of good visualization is to promote transparency, and foster social change, then we all agreed: What Is Your Water Footprint scored high marks, and our top-notch ranking."