Tell a data story. Visualize a better world.

In collaboration with the World Bank, the United Nations Foundation, and the Global Partnership for Sustainable Development Data, Google Cloud is hosting a data storytelling contest called Visualize 2030.

The 2030 Agenda

From ending poverty to preserving biodiversity, The 2030 Agenda is made up of 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) that define a plan of action for people, planet, and prosperity. These goals seek to meaningfully transform three critical areas: ending poverty, helping society, and preserving the environment.

The challenge

To tell a data-driven story that reveals how at least two SDGs influence each other and what actions might be taken in order to reach those goals by 2030.

The reward

The top five eligible submissions will receive:

  • $10,000 (USD) cash prize
  • Announcement during the
    World Economic Forum at Davos
  • Publication by Google Cloud

The toolbox


Contestants had to use data from at least one of the newly available BigQuery public datasets provided by the UN Statistics Division and the World Bank.


Contestants used Google Data Studio — a free service for analysis, visualization, and reporting — to visualize the data and create their data story.

Meet the judges

Experts in multimedia storytelling, data analytics, sustainable development and journalism, the judges will be using their knowledge, along with the assessment criteria, to select the five contest winners.

Richard Curtis

Rajesh Mirchandani

Chief Communications Officer, United Nations Foundation

Simon Rogers

Claire Melamed

Chief Executive Officer, Global Partnership for Sustainable Development Data

Rajesh Mirchandani

Haishan Fu

Director, World Bank's Development Data Group

Haishan Fu

Richard Curtis

Writer, Director, Co-Founder of Red Nose Day and UN Sustainable Development Goals Advocate

Cindi Howson

Cindi Howson

Research VP, Gartner

Fausto Ibarra

Fausto Ibarra

Director of Product Management, Google Marketing Platform

Claire Melamed

Simon Rogers

Data Editor, News Lab at Google

Stay tuned

The contest closed on November 16, 2018. This January, five winners will be announced at the World Economic Forum at Davos — a yearly gathering that brings together leaders from around the world to shape global, regional, and industry agendas.

See what makes a winning story

Data first

Start with the data. Approach it as a scientist would: observe, hypothesize, and test your hypothesis against the data. The data should dictate the visualization, not the other way around.

Narrative arc

Build a narrative framework around your findings. What is the exposition? The rising action? The climax? And finally, propose a solution that may help achieve two or more of the SDGs by 2030.


Invite audiences to engage with your data story and ask their own questions of the data. This adds a sense of discovery to the interrelated threads and findings.

Design language

Maintain a unique look and feel throughout your work. Make font, size, alignment, and color purposeful. Ensure that the design guides your audience along your narrative arc.


Ensure access to your insights by designing your data story with a global audience in mind. In order to achieve the 2030 Agenda, your visualizations and story need to be easily understood by all.

Spread the word and share your story with #visualize2030

Data Solutions for Change

Visualize 2030 is an extension of Google Cloud’s Data Solutions for Change initiative, where nonprofit organizations and NGOs have the opportunity to apply big data to real-world challenges.

Learn more


The Visualize 2030 contest is for college and graduate students aged 18 or older (or the majority age in your country of permanent residence).
To be considered for the contest, you must be an active and enrolled student with an accredited university or college. As long as you’re actively enrolled and can prove it, you can participate.
Data Studio is a free online visual analytics and dashboarding service. You can learn more about Data Studio by reviewing the product overview page and help docs.
Visualize 2030 is a US-based contest, but students from other countries can participate so long as they live in a country in which Google Data Studio is available and they meet the full list of eligibility criteria. The official rules contain the eligibility criteria in full.
The application and data story must be in English. If English is not your first language, feel free to note that in your application as we will take that into consideration when assessing your submission.
Applicants are allowed only one submission. Multiple submissions will result in the applicant being automatically disqualified.
We will be selecting a total of five winners, each evaluated objectively and holistically against the judging criteria outlined above.
Each winner will receive a gross $10,000 (USD) cash prize. Google will not be responsible for claiming, paying, or otherwise handling any applicable taxes in your permanent country of residence. See the official rules for details.
First, please see the official rules to see if your question is answered there. Otherwise, please log into the Google Group and contact the administrator.