Helping You Marshal Data to Achieve Last-Mile Impact

Davis: Data Storytelling by Velir logo

Creating beautiful and interactive visualizations of data is important to drive usage. However, we've learned over the years that usage doesn't always equal impact.

Our ultimate goal at Davis is to help you communicate data in engaging, persuasive, and useful ways, so that you can achieve the last-mile impact you’re after.

We’ve experienced that it’s the combination of data and stories -- not one or the other -- that yields results. After all, our brains are wired for stories, so we collectively latch on to the personal and the poignant. Yet we also need data to help inform the important societal decisions that we collectively make.

Outcomes We Help You Achieve Through Data Storytelling

We help out clients achieve an array of outcomes through data communication, including:

  • Bringing attention to an issue, or swaying public opinion
  • Informing or influencing policy decisions at the local, state, or national level
  • Improving the delivery of programs in the public sector
  • Changing behaviors among a population – e.g. persuading people to eat healthier or conserve water
  • Catalyzing the engines of progress in a community - coalitions and collaboratives, civic technologists, service providers, the media, and advocacy organizations - by providing the data they need to carry forward their work
  • Raising funds for an organization or cause or summarizing the work of an institution - that is, describing how it’s contributing to the social good

kauffman index entrepreneurship series responsive across devices

Our Offerings: How We Help You Transform Data Into Impact

Our work with you begins with understanding who your audiences are and what actions you want them to take with data you’re providing. We need to walk in the shoes of your constituents to understand their use cases for leveraging data, and we also take the time to sit down with you to develop metrics for measuring eventual impact.

Our teams of digital and content strategists, user experience experts, designers, and data programmers offer a constellation of services to help you turn datasets into compelling stories that can achieve action. Davis’ offerings include:

  • Custom Visualizations: You may have data that you want to communicate in ways that can rise above the digital chatter. We can help you transform simple numbers in a spreadsheet into a poignant, compelling data story that elicits action.
  • Data Research Sites: We build data tools that enable your constituents to create their own maps and graphs from a comprehensive library of data provided by you. These website visitors become your information ambassadors, tailoring the data you supply to suit their needs, then integrating the resulting visualizations into their reports, presentations, blog posts, fact sheets for meetings, and other tools for social change.
  • Enhancing Internal Enablement of Data: We advise social sector organizations on how to fortify processes and grow internal capacity to catalog, manage, update, and disseminate data in efficient and effective ways.
  • Day-to-Day Visualizations for Your Website & Social Media Channels: These days, the steady drumbeat of communication demands our clients regularly produce maps and graphs to complement material they’re publishing through their website and social media channels. We can recommend third-party tools that align with your needs, and create custom solutions tailored to your editorial workflow and design requirements.
  • Data Storytelling Mentoring: We help our clients be effective data storytellers, so that they’re adept at communicating with numbers. We share lessons we’ve learned in leveraging data to achieve impact; summarize trends taking place in data visualization; host convenings for our clients; provide mentoring related to data storytelling; and help clients develop messaging related to findings.

Examples from Our Data Work

Over the years, we have built practical, innovative, and compelling data stories and query tools that help our clients transform facts into impact.

commonwealth fund quality spending interactive 2016

Like the Commonwealth Fund, who asks the important question, what would happen if health care in your state improved to match the best state?

Or the communication firm, Purpose, who turned to Velir to create a data story about issues affecting shift workers - that is, the large percentage of the US workforce that have no fixed schedules.

Whether it’s neighborhood-level work to help an advocacy organization map data on children’s issues in New York City.

Or the global work of an international consortium that includes the Gates Foundation, Results for Development, the World Health Organization and the World Bank to raise awareness about the importance of primary health care in developing countries.

Our mission at Velir is to adopt yours and take it further, and with data that means helping you harness facts, so that your audiences take notice - and take action. 

prb world population data sheet 2014 devices screenshots

Principles that Guide Our Work

  • We take a design thinking approach to client projects, recognizing how vital it is to understand how your end-users want to use data in their lives and work.
  • To achieve long-term impact in this realm, we emphasize teaching our clients to fish, in order to help ensure they have the capacity and skills to realize their aims going forward.
  • We believe that simply visualizing data is not the end goal. It’s one step along the way in a process that can lead to social change, from finding and organizing datasets to analyzing the information for meaning to visualizing findings and, finally, to communicating and encouraging use. We can support our clients’ work across this continuum.
  • To ensure broad impact for the public sector, we look for opportunities to scale our offerings via webinars and speaking engagements; blog posts to share what we’re observing in the data communication space; and roundtable convenings that enable clients to connect with each other on what works in the field of data engagement.
  • In this information age, we recognize our clients can’t alone achieve their goals. We emphasize the need for them to partner with information ambassadors in their data ecosystem (e.g. government agencies, service providers, advocacy organizations, employers, faith-based organizations, etc.) who can help promote and support what’s being communicated via data.

Our Data Storytelling Portfolio

Featured Projects

data viz aarp data explorer

data viz prb world population data sheet

data viz commonwealth fund 2016 scorecard

data viz r4d phcpi

Full Portfolio


If you would like to partner with us on a data storytelling initiative or learn more about our capabilities, click the button below to connect with us!

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