by Ranna Jaraha & Erin Abler
From delivery to creative to data analysis, each department at Razorfish Healthware has its own packed agenda. As we juggle to meet the needs of all our clients, some days it’s hard to feel like we have time to breathe, much less take on another task. But even during those demanding times, when a special project comes along, we’re the first to jump at the opportunity—such was the case with the 2012 Civic Data Challenge.
What exactly did we have to do? Well, the idea seemed fairly simple: take civic health and community attachment data – in addition to public data on health, safety, education and the economy – and transform it into something engaging and informative, such as a visualization or interactive product. As a health and wellness agency focused on creating experiences that change lives, this was right up our alley. Before we knew it, we were diving into sheets and sheets of excel data that would make most heads spin. There was a huge variety and complexity in the data that could be leveraged to tell many different wellness stories.
Counting data analysts, writers, designers, and animators in our ranks – as well as management, illustration, and voiceover talent – we divided work based on individual strengths as well as budding interests. The resulting story – about the connection between arts education and community wellness – grew organically from our research. We showcased our findings through an illustrated video that told the story of how arts education and its connection to community health touch on a variety of civic concerns. You can see it now on Vimeo.
Though we are proud just to have participated, we are even more thrilled to announce that our entry has been selected as one of four winners in the Challenge.
Our win means that our findings will be shared throughout a variety of digital channels. Hopefully our video will function as a catalyst to broader public appreciation of the arts as an important part of a well-rounded citizenry and a brighter future.
We’d like to acknowledge the National Conference on Citizenship and the Knight Foundation, who organized the contest. And of course, a big thanks to everyone at Razorfish Healthware who supported the effort and demonstrated once again that our passion for understanding and sharing insights into what makes for a healthier world isn’t just limited to doing that for our paying clients.