Disability resource flows — Prototype

In January 2013, members of our team went to Toronto to explore policy options around employment for disabled youth.

Steve Williams discusses the prototype Sankey diagram he developed with Terry Stewart. This video illustrates how resource flows around disability could be visualized if the resources were available to gather full budgetary data.

Sankey diagrams are very useful for visualizing resource flows. In this example, we wanted to get a sense of where financial support for those living with disability in Ontario was coming from. How much was from public and private sectors? What role did employers play? Who were the intermediaries? How many government ministries were involved? How much of the resources were going to families and how much to individuals? The model shows this flow from left to right. The thickness of the lines represents the relative scale of financial resource from each segment. Note that in this case, the lines are illustrative only as the research is not yet complete for all segments. Viewers of the model can move the different segments around to improve visibility and hover over the connecting lines to see the values associated with the flows.

Play with the prototype and see the code.

The prototype is based on this Sankey diagram, built using the Sankey library in D3.

We will be featuring more of Steve Williams’ models developed for SiG@Waterloo, and his thinking about these issues, on Social Innovation SimulationSteve Williams blogs on visualization and modelling at constructive.net

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