An Information Visualization Application Case to Understand the World Happiness Report

  • Nychol Bazurto-GomezEmail author
  • J. Carlos TorresEmail author
  • Raul GutierrezEmail author
  • Mario ChamorroEmail author
  • Claire BulgerEmail author
  • Tiberio HernandezEmail author
  • John A. Guerra-GomezEmail author
Conference paper
Part of the Communications in Computer and Information Science book series (CCIS, volume 847)


Happiness is one of the most important components in life, however, qualifying happiness is not such a happy task. For this purpose, the World Happiness Report was created: An annual survey that measures happiness around the globe. It uses six different metrics: (i) healthy life expectancy, (ii) social support, (iii) freedom to make life choices, (iv) perceptions of corruption, (v) GDP per capita, and (vi) generosity. Those metrics combined in an index rank countries by their happiness. This index has been published by means of a static report that attempts to explain it, however, given the complexity of the index, the creators have felt that the index hasn’t been explained properly to the community. In order to propose a more intuitive way to explore the metrics that compose the index, this paper presents an interactive approach. Thanks to our information visualization, we were able to discover insights such as the many changes in the happiness levels of South Africa in 2013, a year with statistics like highest crime rate and country with most public protests in the world. In the same fashion, the application illustrates recent Yemen’s history, which in 2011 had a fall in the ranking, as in 2014 and onwards. Looking at the historical facts of this country, we see in 2011 a revolution began, explaining the fall in the happiness level, followed by a period of transition, that explains the peak in following years (2012–2013), finally, in 2014 the revolution continues, resulting in a civil war.


World happiness Coordinated and multiple views Information visualization application 


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Imagine GroupUniversidad de los AndesBogotaColombia
  2. 2.UC BerkeleyBerkeleyUSA
  3. 3.Make it HappySan FranciscoUSA
  4. 4.World Happiness ReportSan FranciscoUSA

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