Data visualisation tool, Trademapper – WWF / Traffic

Trademapper is an interactive data visualisation mapping tool to visualise international trade-flow data developed for WWF TRAFFIC to track illegal wildlife and wildlife products.


Trademapper - interactive data visualisation tool for WWF and Traffic

The problem

Illegal wildlife trade is a major threat to many endangered species. Wildlife conservationists and scientists use large volumes of data to monitor this continuously evolving trade.

Our Brief

Aptivate was asked by WWF and Traffic to create Trademapper – a data visualisation tool that would let users condense data, and present it clearly and interactively to track and measure the spatial movement of illegal wildlife products and determine what factors influences the trade.  They were certain they wanted it to be open-source and browser-based.

The process

I worked closely with the clients and two developers in a short one-day discovery session where we developed and expanded our understanding of who the users for Trademapper would be. We created personas and explored user journeys. We developed quick story cards for the main features and spent some time prioritising them in order to get down to a minimum viable product by taking a thin-slice approach based on the key user journey from start to finish. This was a challenge but everyone could see the value in it as we started to be tempted off-course. Because we followed a user-centred approach, it was easier to justify choices around which features would be implemented during our very short 2 iteration project.

Data visualisation using D3

I was involved hands-on throughout the whole project from information architecture, interaction design and branding through to front-end development along with javascript D3.js data visualisation tool. The project is now live and has been well received by the wildlife conservation sector.

Screen Shot 2016-03-16 at 18.59.20

User feedback from Twitter

Some images of steps in development. You can see the iterations and changes we made to the line styles, interface element improvements and pop-up positioning. The project was one of my favourites because of the incredible team working on it, and especially the product owner – Willow Outhwaite.