Food Supply in the Middle East Data Viz

  • We were given an assignment in Metrics & Data Visualization class to find and visualize a public data set. I was interested in seeing if data about food can be presented and visualized to provide a human centered lens on how the Israeli Palestinian conflict shapes people’s daily lives. I thought juxtapositioning food supply data collected by a third party like the UN, from Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories, could be a good way to tell a story about the differences and similarities of life on both sides, through talking about a basic necessity that everyone should be able to relate to and understand - food, and what is on offer and available as an Israeli or as a Palestinian.

    I made the presentation interactive, so the reader can navigate between the different graphs. The full, interactive version can be accessed here:
  • The data visualized is a comparison of annual quantities of food available for human consumption in Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories (West Bank and the Gaza Strip) from 1996—2011. I pulled it from the UN's Food and Agriculture Organization's Food Balance Sheets (FBS). The data is displayed in caloric value per person per day, and juxtapositioned to dietary recommendations and caloric value of familiar food items, in order to give viewers a better sense of what the values mean. 
    The additional data regarding recommended daily caloric intake was taken from the USDA's Dietary Guidelines for Americans, as the those are the basis for the dietary recommendations compiled by the World Health Organization for the population in the Eastern Mediterranean region (the Middle East). Caloric value of familiar food items was also sourced from the USDA.