Tuesday, 20 October 2015

Fighting Ebola with Tableau

Peter Gilks, Nelson Davis and John Mathis

The Tableau Foundation deployed Zen Masters and software to help fight Ebola

Tableau foundation began in 2012 and 2013 IPO of Tableau created funding for the Foundation. Aim 'to encourage the use of facts and analytical reasoning to solve the World's problems'. Does Mission Grants, Community Grants, Disaster Response and Employee Service & Giving.

The President of Guinea said “the Tableau Foundation work helped to transform the fight against Ebola”.

Volunteer network of Tableau experts eager to help non-profits to do more with data.

Background: 1st outbreak in Guinea in December 2013. There have been c.3800 cases and c. 2800 deaths. The GDP per capita is less than $500. There is a population of 10.5 million people
5 stage process: 1. Contact Identification, 2. Contact Tracing, 3. Diagnosis, 4. Treatment, 5. Safe burials

Electronic Data management and Contact Tracing was a big step forward. Used basic smartphones to capture the data. Data was sent straight back to the system so live updates were possible. It helps to increase transparency around the tracing.

CommCare created a simplistic app to capture data and create on the ground recommendations. Visualising the data was not the best so in stepped Tableau.

Data flow was a daily upload that goes in to SQL Server and the data was held on Tableau Server. 

Data was not always as clean as hoped. Training of colleagues was continual so this meant data quality was challenged here as well. Transactional data also posed challenges. It was also in French so that was added fun.

Cultural challenges was tough as trying to develop reporting for use of those that haven’t had high reporting exposure adds to the challenge.

Quick fire dashboards were the requirement rather than running extensive usability testing.

Level of Detail would have made the transactional data a lot easier to handle and measure but the team were using 8.2.

Scaffolding was used to get round date issues but adding a data filter to look at whether the data was less than today to make sure the records are reduced as much as possible.

Doctors used the dashboards to work out how to allocate resources and could make as many data led decisions as much as possible because if it wasn’t optimal more people would contract Ebola


You can volunteer at https://servicecorps.tableaufoundation.org

1 comment:

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