If you’ve ever considered yourself an informed citizen, you may have questioned how your nation’s budget was spent at one time or another. When a crisis strikes, where is that funding being pulled? When a government program is proposed, how much of that contributes to the deficit? How much is your government actually spending and on what?
Igor Peev, senior program manager on the Power Map for Excel team, took to the Office Blogs today to show his work in making millions, billions, and trillions of dollars a visual ordeal. Igor begins his recount of his events with an email he received from United States Vice President Joe Biden. Part of the email read, “This time of year, I like to break out a little saying: Don’t tell me what you value, show me your budget and I’ll tell you what you value.”
Igor saw this as an opportunity to explore the data and make a visual representation. Using Power Map, Igor decided to experiment with the data from the budauth.CSV file published on GitHub, and these were his results.
With a visualization of the budget, Igor was easily able to identify outliers in the budget that set markers for particular events. Using the Data Card feature in Power Map, Igor could pinpoint the spending for Hurricane Katrina back in 2005. He could also identify the Savings and Loan crisis of the 1990’s as well what was being spent in North America for Homeland Security.
With this form a visualization, spending hours and hours scouring reports for businesses big and small could be a thing of the past.